Kent State awarded $3 million for polymer-liquid crystal research

Leighann McGivern

Kent State was recently awarded $3 million by the Ohio Third Frontier Commission to be used for new concept devices based on nanoscale engineering of polymer-liquid crystal interfaces, according to a university press release.

The award is part of more than $21 million in grants the commission recommended through the Ohio Third Frontier Open Innovation Incentive and the Ohio Third Frontier Innovation Platform Program to support innovation activities in the state. Kent State will work with these organizations to endorse their core products over the next few years.

According to its website, the Liquid Crystal Institute is the world’s “first research center focused on the basic and applied science of liquid crystals.” LCI will be serving as lead on the project and will be collaborating with four local companies: Kent Displays Inc., AlphaMicron, Crystal Diagnostics and Akron Polymer Systems Inc.

“We are excited and grateful for the continued support from the state of Ohio to our years of effort to establish a cluster of high-tech industry and academia focused on novel liquid crystal applications beyond LCD (liquid crystal display) TV,” said Hiroshi Yokoyama, director of Kent State’s Liquid Crystal Institute, in the press release. “Northeast Ohio has a unique synergy between liquid crystal and polymer, and basic research and application opportunities that is found nowhere in the world. The Ohio Third Frontier Innovation Platform Program grant strongly complements the National Science Foundation’s Partnership for Innovation grant awarded last year to the Liquid Crystal Institute with the common objective to realize the research-driven innovation with true economic impact, capitalizing the research asset of the Liquid Crystal Institute.”

Contact Leighann McGivern at [email protected].