Ames Laboratory, a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory operated by Iowa State University, is a nationwide leader in understanding, designing and creating new materials to secure our energy future, such as developing better magnet materials for wind turbines and hybrid cars or improving biofuels processing.
Ames Laboratory puts our science into action by deploying technologies through licensing innovation developed by Ames Lab scientists. In 2013, Ames Laboratory inventions provided an estimated economic contribution of $610 million, representing $16 of economic activity for every dollar of the Ames Laboratory's $39 million annual budget.
Over the last 30 years, 26 spin-off companies have been formed based on scientific discoveries made at Ames Laboratory, many located in Central Iowa. Two notable Iowa-based companies are:
- Advanced Analytical Technologies Inc. AATI manufactures chemical analytical tools based on Ames Laboratory technologies. The biotech company is located in the Iowa State University Research Park in Ames.
- Iowa Powder Atomization Technologies. IPAT creates titanium metal powders that can be formed into industrial parts for military, biomedical, and aerospace applications. Their process, developed at Ames Laboratory, increase the efficiency of the titanium powder making process and, thus, lowering the cost of the powder to manufacturers. IPAT is located in Nevada, Iowa.
Did you know? Lead-free solder, developed at Ames Laboratory, has generated more than $55 million in royalty income, making it the top all-time royalty generator for Ames Lab and Iowa State University. Lead-free solder is an environmentally-friendly material that made history as the first cost-effective, broadly useable alternative to tin-lead solder, a toxic but necessary ingredient in a range of popular consumer electronics.