September 23, 2009

Technology and Innovation Expo set for Oct. 9

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale staff are making final preparations for the SIUC Technology and Innovation Expo, which will feature speakers, networking opportunities, great food and a new product launch.

The event, set for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9, at the Dunn-Richmond Economic Development Center, will cater to a broad audience of researchers, business professionals, entrepreneurs and the general public. Inventors will show off their creations that they developed at SIUC and have patented and prepared for commercialization. The inventions on display span the spectrum of architecture, biotechnology, medical devices, energy and environment. The inventors will be available to answer questions and demonstrate their wares.

The event also will feature technology presentations and discussions, including one scheduled for the afternoon focusing on energy and the environment. The presentation will touch on such issues as biodiesel and clean coalmining technology. Presenters include Yong Gao, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at SIUC, who will talk about his new technology for producing biodiesel fuel.

Also during the afternoon, the Clean Coal and Mining Technology Panel will address issues including the production of clean fuels and chemicals from coal, innovative devices and improved mine safety. Ken Anderson, professor of geology, and Tomasz Wiltowski, professor of mechanical engineering and energy processes, will help lead the discussion, along with Yoginder “Paul” Chugh, professor of mining and mineral resources engineering and A.J.S. Spearing, associate professor of mining and mineral resources engineering. Francois D. Botha, director of the Illinois Clean Coal Institute at SIUC, will speak on state support of the University’s coal technology invention process.

SIUC alumnus Bob Gower will give the keynote speech for the event at 9:30 a.m.. The co-founder of Carbon Nanotechnologies Inc. with Nobel Prize winner Richard Smalley, Gower also was president and CEO of Lyondell Petrochemical Co. He currently is chairman at Ensysce Biosciences Inc.

SIUC alumnus Curt Jones, founder and president of Dippin’ Dots Ice Cream, will introduce his re-invention of coffee frappes. Those attending the catered lunch will be among the first with the opportunity to try the new frappes, which use a freezing and blending process, as well as a hot drink made with Dippin’ Dots Espresso.

At day’s end, event organizers will play host at a reception from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Those attending will have the opportunity to network and browse the many exhibits and sponsor displays, as well as get a glimpse into the progress of technology at SIUC.

Those attending also can enjoy a variety of locally made wines from Blue Sky Vineyard, hors d’oeuvres by La Bella Notte and other items.

Event organizers include SIUC Technology Transfer, Office of Vice Chancellor for Research, the College of Business, the Center for Innovation, Jackson Growth Alliance, Southern Illinois Research Park and the SIUC Small Business Incubator.

Sponsors of the event include SIUC College of Business/Center for Innovation, Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP, SIUC Office of the Provost. Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Dean, Ameren, SIUC Small Business Incubator, Southern Illinois Research Park, Southern Illinois Healthcare, Southern Illinois Entrepreneurship Center, Illinois Small Business Development Center, USDA Rural Development, Jackson Growth Alliance, SIUC Center for Rural Health and Social Service Development, The Southern Illinoisan, SIU Credit Union, Shawnee Community College, John A. Logan College, and VWR International.

Tickets for the event are $15 each. To register, go to or call 618/536-7751.