by Mike Gust, CCEFP Industry Liaison Officer

Hello and welcome to “From the Center” the new NFPA Reporter monthly column dedicated to providing the fluid power industry with insights about interesting happenings going on within the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP) or from now on just Center for short. I’m Mike Gust, the CCEFP’s Industry Liaison Officer. Quite a mouthful of a title I know but let’s just say I am industry’s voice on the inside of the Center and you are my customers. It goes without saying that a strong innovative engine is a cornerstone of a healthy and growing industry and I am truly excited about the impact the Center is making. For instance did you know
  • That industry and the NFPA were instrumental in getting the Center funded by the National Science Foundation (nsf.gov) almost eight years ago.
  • That since that time the CCEFP has become one of the world’s foremost fluid power research centers and the leading fluid power institute in the US.
  • That the NSF, academia and industry have since contributed over $42 million to advance fluid power related research.
  • That because of these effort there has been a 500% increase in both faculty engaged in fluid power and graduate students focusing in this technology. 
  • CCEFP universities have graduated 130 bachelor, 110 masters, and 50 PhD fluid power engineers so far.  In addition we have sponsored 80 CCEFP student interns while more than 170 of these students have been hired by the fluid power industry or one of the core industries it serves.
  • CCEFP graduates are judged by industry to be instantly effective, coming with up to $200,000 each in training, including real-world, hands-on experience with fluid power components and systems.
  • Our research program is 100% pre-competitive—meaning either fundamental or near fundamental in nature and focused primarily on expanding the overall base of fluid power related knowledge. 
  • In its first eight years, researchers sponsored by the CCEFP has published more than 500 papers and filed 35 patents associated with its pre-competitive research platform.
  • CCEFP research is used by industry and government for sponsored research projects, focused on product development and commercialization.  In eight years, this segment of the CCEFP portfolio has grown to over $2.4 million a year.
  • The CCEFP is a magnet for additional government funding to support more pre-competitive fluid power research initiatives.
For future articles I really do want to hear what it is you would like to know about the Center. Please contact me at mjgust@umn.edu with your suggestions. My intention is to showcase some of the research discoveries we have made, as well as, introduce you to our outstanding students. Best wishes for a wonderful 2014!