'The Potential of OARDC is Extraordinary': U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton
Biosystems engineer Yebo Li shows U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton his patented polyurethane foam made from waste. (Ken Chamberlain photo)
WOOSTER, Ohio -- "The potential of the work being done in this place makes it extraordinary, and makes me excited." U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton, of Ohio's 13th District, summarized with those words her visit yesterday (4/5) to the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC).
Sutton toured the center's Wooster campus and learned about some of the projects underway there, particularly those involving renewable energy and bioproducts under public-private partnership models.
"This was a great opportunity to visit about the impact of OARDC research and OSU Extension outreach programs on Ohioans, and to interact with some of the scientists who are making contributions that can improve the well-being of our citizens," OARDC Director Steve Slack said.
Sutton met with Clemens Halene, engineering vice president for quasar energy group, which runs an anaerobic digester that produces biogas from waste on OARDC's BioHio Research Park. She also spoke with agricultural engineers Yebo Li and Harold Keener about projects involving the conversion of biodiesel byproducts into polyurethane foam and production of algae for fuel.
"It seems to me that having all these entities, public and private, work together in the same space really helps all the parties involved move forward. One feeds on the other," Sutton said of the partnerships fostered by OARDC. "When you develop the research and the workforce, economic development and job opportunities arise from that.
"I look forward to being an advocate in Washington to make sure that the potential of this institution becomes a reality."
OARDC is the research arm of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.