UND, LM Wind Power announces new R&D partnership in REAC building

LM Wind Power announced today the opening of its new Global Research and

Phyllis Johnson

Phyllis Johnson, UND vice president of research and economic development

Development office and a partnership involving University of North Dakota faculty and students in the REAC (Research Enterprise and Commercialization) building in Grand Forks.

This office will be home to Global LM Wind Power personnel from Product Development/Core Engineering, Quality and Nondestructive Testing Development, and Advanced Manufacturing Technology. Each department will provide key input to Grand Forks new Global Research Team.

“We have several development projects underway at this time across these teams, and the move to this facility (REAC) in Grand Forks will allow us to accelerate these programs,” said Kevan Rusk, LM Wind Power Director of Core Engineering.

This new division plans to hire up to 10 employees in 2011 and extends LM Wind Power’s global R&D footprint to 7 locations, including 3 facilities in Denmark, an office in the Netherlands, an R&D center in Bangalore, India, an office opening this summer in Beijing, and now Grand Forks, North Dakota.

LM Wind Power has formed a strong partnership with UND, working on a number of projects, ranging in scope from simple testing of laminate samples to the support of Mechanical Engineering Senior Design projects to the recent sponsorship of several graduate students in the Chemical and Mechanical Engineering Departments.

LM Wind Power’s proximity and access to the University resources will continue to allow for great collaboration and access to local resources.

Dr. Phyllis Johnson, UND vice president for research and economic development and president of the Board of Directors of the UND Research Foundation (UNDRF), said that there also will be opportunities for students, both undergraduates and graduates, to take part in the real-world research, thanks to the new partnership with LM Wind Power.

“UND’s research in the field of engineering is a perfect fit with LM Wind Power,” Johnson said. “Locating LM Wind Power researchers here in Grand Forks will take our collaboration to a new level, further building our capabilities in material science.

As a result of the partnership, Johnson said that her office has awarded $75,000 to UND Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering Matthew Cavalli and Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering Brian Tande to develop improved resin formula and adhesives for wind blade manufacturing.

The Grand Forks Region Economic Development Corporation (EDC) has been working with LM Wind Power for more than five years to establish connections and collaborations with Grand Forks and UND and, ultimately, to launch this new LM Wind Power Global Research and Development office our community.

“LM Wind Power plays a key role in our regional economy and we are very pleased to announce their new division in Grand Forks. This development is an example of how strong partnerships and strategic investments made by UND and the City of Grand Forks can leverage economic growth in our region,” said Klaus Thiessen, President/CEO of the Grand Forks Region EDC.The state of North Dakota is also excited about LM Wind Powers new division in Grand Forks.

“LM Wind Power’s decision to establish a research and development division in Grand Forks is good news for North Dakota,” Governor Jack Dalrymple said. “The company’s partnership with UND and its location in the Research, Enterprise and Commercialization (REAC) facility is a prime example of our universities providing the high-tech support that will continue to enhance our educational opportunities, attract new business and create jobs.”

For more information on the press conference contact:
Klaus Thiessen President/CEO Grand Forks Region EDC 701-746-2720 klaust@grandforks.org

LM Wind Power is the world’s leading component supplier to the wind turbine industry. LM Wind Power Blades is the world’s leading supplier of blades for wind turbines, and the only supplier that operates on a global basis. LM Wind Power blades are currently mounted on more than one in three wind turbines throughout the world.
LM Wind Power has factories in four major regions: Northern Europe, Southern Europe, North America (Grand Forks, ND) and Asia. LM factories are located right in the most important wind energy markets.

The Grand Forks Region Economic Development Corporation (EDC) provides comprehensive services to support local primary sector business start-ups and expansions, as well as attract new primary sector companies and industries to Grand Forks and the surrounding region.
The EDC offers the resources, incentives, and expertise to ensure regional company growth. Grand Forks’ diversified and vibrant business environment supports companies of many kinds.

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Cutline information: Dr. Phyllis Johnson, UND vice president of research and economic development, addresses the audience while helping announce a new partnership between UND and LM Wind Power on Wednesday, April 6, at the REAC building in Grand Forks.

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