Auburn researchers pass milestones for patents, license agreements in variety of fields

AUBURN – Auburn University researchers set university records last year for the number of U.S. patents and license and option agreements.

During 2010, Auburn earned 25 U.S. patents, beating the second highest mark of 19 in 2007, and secured 25 new license and option agreements. Auburn researchers also cited 105 new invention disclosures, almost reaching the university’s top score of 110 four years ago.

New patents and inventions are in fields as diverse as advanced materials, biotechnology and environmental sciences.

“Auburn researchers develop ideas through rigorous analysis, design and testing,” said John Mason, associate provost and vice president for research. “They complete the process by putting that concept to work in the marketplace, whether it’s to improve the human condition, create economic opportunity or add understanding of the world around us.”

The recently released 2010 Auburn Research annual update describes progress in Auburn’s research programs and profiles several university experts working closely with private industry and government.

Cyber-security, or protecting sensitive material that travels over the Internet, is one of the university’s many growing research programs, according to Mason. Auburn researchers strengthen information assurance technologies and processes used by industry and government. Scientists on the main campus work closely with the university’s Huntsville Research Center to design cyber threat solutions for defense agencies and aerospace industries.

The Auburn Research Park continues to expand alongside the university’s research programs. In 2010, the park added an MRI Research Center. According to Tom Denney, who directs the center, the facility houses the most advanced clinical MRI, a 3 Tesla, and will soon add one of the world’s few 7 Tesla machines, used only for advanced medical research.

“The center unites expertise in engineering and health with one of the most powerful diagnostic tools available,” Denney said. “Improving cardiovascular health and advancing neuroscience are just two of the many promising medical developments we see in the future.”

The Auburn Business Incubator opened its doors in the park in May. Groundbreaking for the Center for Advanced Science, Innovation and Commerce is slated for this fall.

Contact: Brian Keeter, (334) 844-4650 (, or
Mike Clardy, (334) 844-9999 (