There are very few university-based advanced manufacturing centers that fill the same niche as the SIUE School of Engineering's Southwest Illinois Advanced Manufacturing (SIAM) Center.
"The products we develop reach commercialization within a few years, often in as little as six months," said Kevin Hubbard, associate professor of mechanical and industrial engineering, and director of the SIAM Center. "Most centers focus on basic research which may not see commercialization for decades."
With a staff of faculty investigators from each of the School of Engineering disciplines, the SIAM Center assists small- to moderately-sized established and start-up enterprises in activities including prototype design and fabrication, product development, process optimization and new technology development. Collectively, these activities help create and sustain technical and manufacturing enterprises in southwestern and central Illinois.
The SIAM Center employs 14 engineering students ranging from entry-level freshmen through graduate students. "Students gain on-the-job experience which translates into immediate success in the classroom and upon graduation," said Hubbard.