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SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- In the past, Notre Dame University had labs and centers for engineering students to use and hone their craft. But in an ever-changing world, Notre Dame has adapted to modern times- and so the Engineering Innovation Hub was created.
"Industry continues to advance," said Daryl L. Peterson, the Managing Director of the Hub. "Automation, automation, automation!"
Located in the heart of Cushing-Fitzpatrick Hall, the Engineering Innovation Hub, or EIH for short, features state of the art machinery, giving students and edge in the world of engineering, design and manufacturing.
“This is part of the University’s position to try to expand and demonstrate commitment to the experiential learning journey,” said Peterson.
Students have access to a wide variety of machinery: from automated mills and lathes to 3-D printers, water jet cutters and more.
“We’ve got so much different or diverse types of equipment here," said Peterson. "Including a GE Machine. It’s a very expensive machine that actually prints 3-D, stainless steel. It’s very futuristic and it’s the future of how we’re going to manufacture.”
But the EIH wasn't just created to give students access to these devices, but also to foster collaboration in the design process.
And that collaboration goes beyond just students and faculty.
“Our mission is very clear- it’s two-folded: one, obviously, our students first and foremost," said Peterson. "But a close second is with local industry and our whole South Bend-Elkhart Region.”
The EIH is a part of Notre Dame's iNDustry Labs program, which offers the university's technology and expertise to local businesses.
One company that's involved-- Chase Manufacturing out of Nappanee.
The Engineering Innovation Hub is a part of Notre Dame’s iNDustry Labs program, which offers Notre Dame’s technology and expertise to local businesses.
Matt Harrison, with Chase Manufacturing, said “The partnership we have here with Notre Dame and iNDustry Labs, and the access we have here at EIH or Engineering Innovation Hub, really allows us to explore new technologies and see how it could be a good fit for our business and future needs.”
And access to that kind of of equipment would only benefit local industry, and in turn, the local community.
According to Harrison “The industry really has a lot of need in order to advance in how we can integrate technologies into our manufacturing flows and I think that no other region comes to mind that has so much need, so having the opportunity with iNDustry Labs and with the University like this, I think that’s fantastic. That’s gonna really help advance our region.”
“The Engineering Innovation Hub is collaborative; it goes across more than just engineering," said Peterson. "And I think it’ll grow bigger than the South Bend-Elkhart region. In my opinion- and that’s my personal ambition- is to grow it more nationally and internationally in the next ten years.”
To see if iNDustry Labs can benefit your business or company, more information can be found at industrylabs.nd.edu