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Honeywell and UNM pursue joint technology research

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — University of New Mexico engineering students and professors are expected to benefit from a new agreement with Honeywell to pursue joint research and development of technologies to meet national security needs.

The memorandum of understanding, signed Monday by UNM and Honeywell Federal Manufacturing and Technologies, will help cut red tape when that Honeywell division subcontracts with UNM on research projects that it manages for the National Nuclear Security Administration and the U.S. Department of Energy. The arrangement could expedite approval of projects, allowing more professors and students to work on cutting-edge research that often leads to career opportunities for UNM graduates, said Robin Stubenhofer, vice president of engineering at Honeywell’s National Security Campus in Kansas City, Mo.

“Placing contracts with UNM and other universities can get complicated given federal acquisition regulations, so this MOU outlines some basic contractual terms that will make it easier to place work here at UNM,” Stubenhofer told the Journal. “For Honeywell, that helps move research further along while potentially developing a future workforce.”

The agreement can give Honeywell better access to a skilled workforce, said Honeywell Center of Excellence leader Kevin Baughn.

“It establishes a recruiting pipeline,” Baughn said. “It knocks down barriers to research projects, which provide professors and students exposure to our work.”

Honeywell Federal Manufacturing and Technologies employs about 2,700 in Missouri. About 200 people work at a satellite near the Albuquerque International Sunport.

Between 30 percent and 40 percent of the Albuquerque employees are UNM graduates, and the company wants to hire more, said Steve Chagnon, senior technical manager for the local facility.

For UNM, the memorandum of understanding reflects university efforts to seek more sponsored research with industrial partners, said Joe Cecchi, dean of the School of Engineering.

“This expands opportunities for faculty to do research while providing real-world, hands-on experience for students,” Cecchi said.

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