ttu logo

tennessee technological university

Center for Manufacturing Research

Q. What are the driving directions to the Center?

Directions to CMR

Q. What are some examples of how the CMR helps Tennessee industries?

The CMR has helped more than 500 Tennessee manufacturing entities through the following services:

  • Tailored Research Projects
  • Free Energy Assessments
  • Material Testing
  • Short-term Faculty Consulting Through UT-CIS

Q. Does the CMR manufacture a product?

No, but the Center for Manufacturing Research can provide the professional network, testing equipment, and in some cases the intellectual expertise to help market, manufacture, and prototype new/existing products. Contact us for more information on how we can help.

Center for Manufacturing Research
Tennessee Tech University
P.O. Box 5077
Cookeville, TN 38505
Phone: (931) 372-3362
Fax: (931) 372-6345

Q. How is the CMR associated with Tennessee Tech University?

Originally chartered in 1984 as the Center for Manufacturing Research and Technology Utilization, the name was shortened in 1995 for publicity and internal documents to the Center for Manufacturing Research (CMR). Administratively, the CMR operates within the context of TTU’s business and operational policies; purchasing, human resources, accounting, and contracting policies to name a few. But the CMR is distinct in the sense that its primary source of revenue is derived from an annual state appropriation as a separate line item in the State budget for Centers of Excellence administered through the Tennessee Higher Education Commission. The CMR is one of three Accomplished Centers of Excellence housed in the College of Engineering at Tennessee Technological University. The other two are the Center for Energy Systems Research and the Center for the Management, Utilization and Protection of Water Resources.

Q. As a potential graduate student, how can I receive financial support from or be involved with research projects at the CMR?

The CMR only accepts requests for Center support of graduate student stipends and fees from TTU faculty who are working in research areas that are aligned with the Strategic Foci of the Center. Faculty can receive CMR support of graduate students in one of two ways; (1) The faculty member can include graduate student support as part of a Sponsor required matching commitment in an externally funded proposal, or (2) The faculty member can submit a CMR internal proposal that will eventually lead to an externally funded project activation.

In many cases, CMR faculty and/or faculty associates may have existing projects that are funded by external agencies. If you identify an associated faculty member with an interesting research project/area, either contact that faculty member directly with your interest, or even better go ahead and apply to TTU’s Graduate School for admission.

Q. If I’m a TTU faculty or staff member, how can I use CMR facilities or expertise?

As a first step, call the Center Director at ext. 3362 and explain the type of resources that you need, the level of resources required, and if any assistance is needed. If an externally funded project is able to reimburse the Center for equipment usage and/or employee time, then a quote will be assembled that outlines the amount of resources and appropriate costs that can be billed to the project. If there are no external funds available, exploratory equipment usage grants can be awarded to faculty for a limited amount of facility usage as time and scheduling permits.

Q. How does the CMR add value to the State of Tennessee?

The Center for Manufacturing Research can point to several key thrusts as part of its return on investment, conservatively estimated at $3.00 generated externally for every state appropriated dollar. The bottom-line: The Center for Manufacturing Research at Tennessee Technological University is a resource that State industries use to enhance their productivity, stay competitive, increase sales, and ultimately provide jobs for Tennesseans who pay taxes.

Q. What are all the sources of the CMR’s funding, and how is that spent?

Between the State of Tennessee appropriation amount and external funding through research and testing projects, the Center for Manufacturing Research administers approximately $4 million in funding. The CMR supports administrative support staff, technical staff including three R&D engineers, three dedicated faculty in key strategic areas, and more than $700,000 in graduate student stipends and fees. In addition, more than $400,000 is returned to the university in Facility & Administrative fees.