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U.S. Army Soldier & Biological Chemical Command
U.S. Army Soldier Systems Center-Natick
Public Affairs Office
Kansas Street
Natick, MA 01760-5012

Contact: Chief, Public Affairs Office
(508) 233-5340

Date: March 16, 2001
No: 01-17

Natick Soldier Center Director wins 2000 Laboratory Director of the Year

NATICK, Mass. -- The Natick Soldier Center director at the U.S. Army Soldier and Biological Chemical Command won the 2000 Laboratory Director of the Year award.

Philip Brandler received the national award, sponsored by the Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer, for his exemplary contributions to technology transfer for economic development at the Natick Soldier Center. The competition is open to more than 700 federal research and development laboratories and centers nationwide.

Technology transfer is an integral part of the Natick Soldier Center's mission of conducting research, development, testing and evaluation focused on maximizing the individual soldier's survivability, combat effectiveness and quality of life in the field.

Brandler is influential to ensuring that every opportunity is taken to effect transfer of technologies through avenues such as Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRDAs), formal and informal partnerships, and consortia. His efforts resulted in the establishment of the National Protection Center, a joint agency pilot program that provides state-of-the-art protective equipment to military personnel and civilian emergency responders, saving millions of taxpayer dollars.

Under his leadership, the Natick Soldier Center web site now includes information targeted toward industry partnering and promoting technology transfer. Evidence of his leadership success in technology transfer is the 37 active CRDAs that the Natick Soldier Center is participating in, representing a value of nearly $9 million, and the eight Dual Use Science and Technology Program projects during the past four years totaling $10.5 million. One of these projects is flameless heater technology originally developed for field rations, which has been incorporated into commercial items such as food, beverage and health care products.

Over the past five years, $700,000 of direct funding has been received from industry and academia under CRDAs.

Financial results for industry partners have also been highly positive as demonstrated by several new business opportunities because of technology transfer.

Examples include the commercialization of airbeam shelter technology, the transition of 3-D scanning protocols and data extraction algorithms to the clothing industry for rapid prototyping and custom clothing manufacture, and the transition of biotechnology advances for the development of biodegradable packaging and food utensils.

Industry commendations include two R&D 100 awards for the development of Primaloft and the Flameless Ration Heater, and the Flexible Packaging Association President's Award for the development of the oxygen-absorbent pouch.

A notable example of Brandler's leadership success in technology transfer is the receipt of the 1999 FLC Consortium Excellence in Technology Transfer Award for achieving a technical breakthrough in developing shelf-stable pocket sandwiches for military and commercial use.

Brandler participates with the Massachusetts Metrowest Chamber of Commerce in efforts to grow local partnerships, and uses Natick Soldier Center facilities and capabilities to meet the needs of local industry.

Brandler has been Natick Soldier Center director since 1994. He has held positions at NASA, AF Research Labs, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and industry. He has advanced degrees in physics, industrial engineering/operations research and business administration.

Natick is part of the U.S. Army Soldier and Biological Chemical Command (SBCCOM). For more information about SBCCOM or the Soldier Systems Center (Natick), please visit our web site at