Constituent Services
Higgins Announces $4 Million More for Defense Projects in Western New York, Bringing Total $10 Million in Defense Dollars Back to District
June 21, 2006
NanoDynamics and CUBRC Each to Receive $2 Million
Washington, DC—Today, Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-27) announced $4,000,000 for defense projects in Western New York, split between NanoDynamics and the Calspan-UB Research Center (CUBRC).  The funding was secured in the FY07 Defense Appropriations Bill, passed in the House of Representatives last night. 
“The great contributions that NanoDynamics and CUBRC are making to Western New York and to our Armed Forces are exciting and continue to grow,” said Congressman Higgins.  “Both these companies are playing a critical role in our nation’s defense and military preparedness, whether by more effectively protecting our troops in combat, or by streamlining our defense research capabilities.  I am proud to represent a district that serves as home to these two institutions—they employ hundreds of hardworking Western New Yorkers, and are the backbone for cutting edge research and development in our region, around the country and throughout the world.”
The funding Higgins secured is in addition to the identical amount included in the FY06 Defense Department Appropriations bill passed in June 2005. 
NanoDynamics will receive $2 million in funding for a portable SOFC (Solid Oxide Fuel Cell)/JP-8 demonstrator, which will develop a light, safe, reliable, and cost-effective power source that will increase the soldier of the future’s tactical sustainability and survivability.  The Army has identified a critical need for ultra-lightweight man portable power, chargers, and power management for dismounted soldiers, and this funding will directly address that need.  In addition to this $2 million in funding for NanoDynamics in the FY07 Defense Appropriations Bill, last year Higgins secured $2 million in the FY06 Defense Appropriations Bill for the same project and an additional $2 million in the FY06 Energy & Water Appropriations Bill for a methane-powered fuel cell for water treatment facilities.
“NanoDynamics is very excited about continuing this important program and we greatly appreciate the support of Congressman Higgins and the New York delegation,” said Keith Blakely, CEO of NanoDynamics.  “The advances in our proprietary fuel cell technology that were achieved as a result of prior year appropriations have significantly exceeded our expectations.  With this announcement, we anticipate NanoDynamics will soon be able to provide portable fuel cell systems having major power and weight advantages to combat soldiers for real-world field testing and qualification.  The economic and logistical benefits of using fuel cells are very significant and the employees of NanoDynamics are pleased to be playing an important role in our Nation’s efforts to improve the effectiveness of our military.”
CUBRC, also based in Buffalo, will use the $2 million it received for the establishment of a National Center for Information Fusion Research, which will provide our nation’s defense, intelligence, and homeland security communities a single point of access to world-class researchers and scientists who have distinguished themselves in this discipline.  The establishment of this center will bring new capabilities focused on enhancing our defense, intelligence and homeland security situational awareness and assessment capabilities. The center will bring experts from UB, Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), and Penn State together under one roof.
“Congressman Higgins’ support for the National Center for Multisource Information Fusion Research (N-CMIF) will allow us to develop new and innovative information fusion-based technologies that are addressing some of the most difficult problems in the defense, intelligence and homeland security communities.  The funding provided through Mr. Higgins efforts allows us to significantly expand our research and development capabilities and provide us with ability to compete for and win new contracts and create additional new job opportunities in Western New York.  Further, this funding will help us educate the next generation of researchers in this highly specialized field and also provide job opportunities for these individuals as they complete their studies.  The research opportunities and the jobs created through the expansion and growth of N-CMIF are well paying and desirable high technology positions that we need to create and sustain here in Buffalo.  This squarely fits CUBRC’s mission to develop and promote new economic activity in Western New York and UB’s quest to become one of the premier research universities in the country,” said Michael D. Moskal, Director, Information Exploitation Group at CUBRC.
The bill must now be considered by the Senate and will then be taken up by a House-Senate conference, after which it will be voted on in both chambers before it proceeds to the President for signature.


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