National Science Foundation Award and Economic Impact
Utah State University will receive $26 million over 5 years, renewable to $50.6 million over 10 years, in National Science Foundation funding to launch the ASPIRE Engineering Research Center. After 10 years, ASPIRE will achieve graduated status and will continue as a self-sustaining research center.
Engineering Research Centers are the National Science Foundation’s flagship program for transformative, federally-funded , industry-partnered, multi-institutional research. They have a proven record of transforming industries and spurring economic development in their regions and across the nation.
ASPIRE is likely to raise more than $200 million in total government and industry funding in support of its mission over the next decade.
ASPIRE is one of four new Engineering Research Centers announced Aug 4. It is the first ERC in Utah in over 30 years and is the only one dedicated to advancing sustainable transportation.
Team and Partners
ASPIRE is headquartered at Utah State University and operated through strategic partnerships with Purdue University, University of Colorado Boulder, University of Texas at El Paso and the University of Auckland New Zealand. Additional partners include researchers at Colorado State University, University of Colorado Colorado Springs, Virginia Tech and Cornell University. National Lab partners include Idaho National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Argonne National Laboratory.
ASPIRE will create two advanced hardware and software platforms for integrative, cross-disciplinary research: the Electric Vehicle and Roadway Test Track, and the full-scale city & intercity simulator. In addition, ASPIRE’s university partner researchers will work in 23 unique research laboratory facilities across the ASPIRE network.
ASPIRE’s growing partner membership currently includes 49 companies and government and non-profit agencies. Its industry membership has a combined annual revenue of more than $700 billion. Committed vehicle manufacturers include three of the world’s top-ten auto makers with combined sales of more than 21 million vehicles in 2018. Committed utilities manage more than 30,000 miles of transmission lines and more than 200,000 miles of power distribution lines across 16 states. Committed roadway owners and operators manage more than 750,000 lane-miles of roads.