The Rubber Engineering Technology program has received an equipment donation from TA Instruments, a company from New Castle, Delaware, to assist students with further knowledge about the field.
According to Marc Guske, a Ferris Professor in the program, TA is a well-known leader in testing equipment for the rubber industry.
“Introductions were made at the International Elastomer Conference in Cleveland, Ohio, in 2014,” Guske said. “Testing is a big part of the rubber program and researching and asking for equipment was a key focus for myself, and Professor Yang at this expo.”
According to Guske, the donation of the Rubber Process Analyzer takes our rheology lab from dated to state of the art.
“This is the most advanced piece of equipment on the market,” Guske said. “Students will be able to utilize it to gain a deeper understanding of the rheology and cure characteristics of the compounds developed in lab.”
Rheology is the study of soft solids such as rubber and other plastics.
The program can utilize the equipment to strengthen relationships with local industry as Ferris has already received several inquires from companies asking if they can use the equipment, according to Guske.
According to an article posted by Ferris, the partnership with TA Instruments represents a $270,000 investing by the manufacturer, and came about through persistent negotiation.
This technology will allow students to do research that can be used to create papers and posters to present at technical conferences and according to Guske, TA has offered to help students conceptualize and execute these research projects, and to financially assist students to travel to various conferences to present their research.
Students in the program did not waste any time when it came to using the new state of the art equipment, according to Guske. Jeff Dickerson, a student in the program, will be doing some research this semester. He actually contacted TA directly to receive training.
Other students have received basic training and professors have started to utilize it in coursework.
“I am thrilled with the donation and the relationship with TA, I feel confident that in the future it will be utilized by the students, faculty and industry to gain more understanding of material,” Guske said.
According to an article published by Ferris, the equipment has been installed in the National Elastomer Center.