The Rensselaer Center for Automation Technologies and Systems (CATS), a NY State-designated Center for Advanced Technology since 1989, assists client companies with applied manufacturing R&D to help them meet specific business objectives — increasing productivity, profitability, domestic and international competitiveness, and the number and quality of products offered — so that they can grow and create jobs. The center partners with NY State systems integrators to offer clients complete solutions to a wide range of manufacturing problems in the Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL) 1-8 range (i.e. problem definition / pilot plant demonstration) after de-risking development in our labs.
CATS partnership provides manufacturers access to:
• An independent, objective look at the effectiveness of their processes and systems that is unbiased by the need to sell a particular solution
• Creative problem solving
• Expertise in process and manufacturing system development, experimental design and system optimization, prototyping, automation, robotics, additive manufacturing and product design for manufacturability
• Leading faculty and graduate students of a nationally ranked (#39 in latest US News & World Report) technical university
• The future workforce of engineers and scientists with hands-on experience that employers critically need
• Well-equipped R&D facilities, labs, and experienced, innovative staff scientists and engineers.
The center is directly linked to or affiliated with three Manufacturing USA hubs (smart manufacturing, robotics, and biopharmaceuticals), a teaching factory (Manufacturing Innovation Learning Lab) and a supply chain management center located at Rensselaer. It also serves as a portal for manufacturers to access the broad range of engineering and scientific expertise, experimental and theoretical capabilities, and technical equipment across Rensselaer's campus.
CATS' facilities comprise 12,000 ft2 of laboratory and office space in the George M. Low Center for Industrial Innovation (CII) on Rensselaer's Troy campus. Each lab is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment, tools, materials, capabilities and software pertaining to specific research thrust areas including:
• Advanced robotics and industrial automation
• Additive and bioadditive manufacturing
• Composites and biocomposites manufacturing
• Metals and Ceramics Processing
• Smart Manufacturing
In addition, the center maintains two prototyping shops with dedicated personnel for electromechanical parts and assemblies.