A group of politicians, scientists and other leaders who helped make the SUPER Agreement happen, post for a group photo in front of a painting of old timey legislature.

Expanding collaborative research opportunities

Idaho National Laboratory and the University of Utah have signed an agreement allowing both organizations to collaborate on research and development projects aimed at advancing the nation’s energy and security technology.

The newly signed Strategic Understanding for Premier Education and Research, or SUPER agreement, allows the organizations to explore deeper research collaborations and expand opportunities for students, faculty and researchers. The five-year agreement solidifies what had been individual peer-to-peer agreements between laboratory researchers and university faculty members. Those will be replaced with a broad institutional memorandum encouraging greater collaboration including shared academic materials, visiting research scholars and cooperative symposia, seminars, workshops and conferences.

“As a national laboratory supporting national priorities, we see significant value in regional partnerships to advance innovative science and technology,” said INL Laboratory Director John Wagner. “Partnerships with regional institutions like the University of Utah expand our reach and elevate our impact.”

The laboratory and the University of Utah’s College of Engineering have conducted collaborative research in areas including nuclear energy, power grid security, and high-performance computing for the last decade. In 2018, INL opened an office on the University of Utah campus focused on further developing a wireless technology that grew out of one of these collaborations to help first responders and law enforcement agencies communicate time-sensitive information, even when airwaves are congested. More recently, the laboratory began collaborating with the school’s nuclear engineering faculty on a medical isotope project that could dramatically improve certain cancer treatments.

“As the flagship research university for our state and region, we are pleased to expand our partnership with Idaho National Laboratory,” said University of Utah President Taylor Randall. “The work of Idaho National Laboratory is critical to our country’s continued success, and our university stands ready to support that work. This type of collaboration with government and industry partners is made possible through continued investment in research facilities on our campus, and we are grateful for the continued support of state leaders who share this vision.”

The official memorandum of understanding is between Battelle Energy Alliance, which manages INL for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy, and the University of Utah. It is a nonbinding agreement that either organization may revoke at any time, and there is no transfer of funding, proprietary information, or confidential data without further agreements.

About Idaho National Laboratory

Battelle Energy Alliance manages INL for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy. INL is the nation’s center for nuclear energy research and development, and also performs research in each of DOE’s strategic goal areas: energy, national security, science and the environment. For more information, visit inl.gov.

Follow INL on social media at TwitterFacebookInstagram and LinkedIn.

Media Contacts

Vincent Horiuchipublic relations associate, College of Engineering