Three Central Oregon Businesses May Receive $9 Million through Defense Bill
Jul 28,2006 00:00 by Bend Weekly News Sources

Oregon nanotechnology efforts receive Appropriations Committee funding approval  

U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Gordon Smith have announced that the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee has approved millions of dollars in funding for defense-related projects in Oregon, including significant funding for a number of Oregon nanotechnology projects through the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI). 

Three Central Oregon businesses are slated to receive a total of $9 million if the FY2007 Defense spending bill is approved by the full Senate.

-- Microsemi’s Power Products Group (formerly Advanced Power Technology) of Bend would receive $4 million to develop technology related to the use of silicon carbide semiconductor components for use in military avionics applications. 

-- IdaTech of Bend would receive $3 million to develop fuel cell technology suitable for battlefield military applications. 

-- Mountain High Equipment & Supply Company of Redmond would receive $2 million for the procurement of a more effective and efficient oxygen supply system for high altitude rotary wing pilots.

“Oregon businesses are producing technologies that will help protect our soldiers and fortify our security at home,” Smith said.  “Many of the projects have applications beyond the battlefield.  The investments we are making today will pay off in other areas tomorrow such as using wave energy to create electricity.  This investment also sustains jobs ensuring Oregon’s economy continues to grow.” 

“Funding for Oregon's new nanotechnology research center, as well as numerous other nanotech projects, demonstrates that our state is truly a national leader in this growing field," Wyden said.  “The targeted investments we're making in basic research and innovative projects will provide a significant boost to Oregon’s economy and further develop technologies that have important applications in saving lives, for our national defense, and for civilian use.”

In addition to the three Central Oregon projects, the others are as follows:

  • ONAMI would receive $2.076 million for the Center for Nanotechnology for Thermal Management and Portable Power Generation, the new Oregon nanotechnology center Senators Wyden and Smith announced in February.  The center will develop nanotechnologies which significantly enhance the performance of microelectronics for military applications.

  • ONAMI would also receive $5 million for the safer nanomaterials and nanomanufacturing program

  • ONAMI would also receive $2.5 million for the Nanoelectronics and Nanometrology Initiative 

  • ONAMI would also receive $1.7 million for the miniature tactical energy systems development program

  • Freightliner, based in Portland, would receive over $35 million to continue its program of replacing linehaul trucks with armored versions

  • Northwest Marine, LLC of Portland would receive $5 million to procure watercraft to be used as barrier tenders to move and service barrier equipment afloat

  • Silver Eagle Manufacturing of Portland would receive $5 million to produce a limited number of mobile field hospitals and shelters for evaluation under field conditions

  • HemCon of Tigard would receive $4.8 million to study the effectiveness of chitosan dressings in treating burns

  • Digimarc of Beaverton would receive $4 million for the research and development of a real-time geospatial video sensor, allowing the information collected to be directly available for instant retrieval on the battlefield

  • The Northwest Manufacturing Initiative would receive $2.6 million to assist the region’s manufacturing industry cluster; one focus of this project is to assist small to medium sized manufacturers in the region be more competitive in defense-related contracting

  • The University of Oregon’s Brain, Biology and Machine Science Initiative would receive $2.5 million for interdisciplinary research related to cognitive neuroscience, genetics research, and informatics

  • Columbia Power Technologies of Wilsonville would receive $2 million to research, develop and construct a direct drive power buoy system, in cooperation with Oregon State University, to demonstrate the viability of wave energy as a source of electric power

  • InSport would receive $2 million for the procurement of a base layer garment for Marine Corps expeditionary forces personnel

In addition, Oregon will share in the following funding:

  • Almost $1.3 billion would go to the Army for Chemical Agents and Munitions Destruction, including funding for operations at the Umatilla Chemical Depot

  • The National Guard Youth Challenge Program would receive $15 million

  • Oregon State University would share in $1 million for the development of nanoscale ultra-low power electronics

These funds are now included in the FY2007 Defense spending bill, which must now be approved by the full Senate.