Collaborative/Cross-College Research Areas

Utah State University also has a number of research centers, specialized units that focus on a particular research area such as the:

Space Dynamics Laboratory

As a not-for-profit unit of the Utah State University Research Foundation, Space Dynamics Laboratory (SDL) solves the technical challenges faced by the military, science community and industry through:

  • Serving MDA and the DoD as the University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) for electro-optical sensor systems research and development
  • Designing and delivering electro-optical and space environment sensors and subsystems for over 400 rocket-borne and space-based payloads
  • Pioneering efficient and effective calibration and characterization techniques and facilities
  • Innovating CubeSat busses and small-scale components that provide large-scale benefits to the customer
  • Enabling significant advances in data compression, processing, and exploitation
  • Developing real-time reconnaissance data visualization hardware and software for operational military applications

Utah Agricultural Experiment Station

The Utah Agricultural Experiment Station (UAES) is part of a network of researchers and facilities at the nation’s land-grant universities and is committed to improving agriculture and natural resources for the people of Utah. Experiment station research provides the researcher working in the lab science-based information used by Extension specialists and agents to assist people in every state in the nation.

At research facilities on the Utah State University campus and throughout the state, the UAES supports hundreds of research projects. It operates labs that test soils, plant tissue, irrigation water and livestock feed. It researches food safety and processing, plant and animal genetics, economic and social forces that shape families and communities, and brings agricultural into harmony with sustainable use of natural resources.

Institute for Disability Research, Policy & Practice

The Institute for Disability Research, Policy & Practice (IDRPP) is Utah’s Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities at Utah State University. It is a dynamic collection of projects, guided by a goal to improve the lives of people with disabilities and their families. This is done through research, education, demonstration services and technical assistance.

The research adds to the knowledge about disability, its causes, its diagnosis and the best ways to accommodate it in daily life. The CPD’s training programs pass research-based techniques on to educators, families and service providers in the community. Demonstration services further bolster training by providing a real-world environment where techniques are tried and trainees learn how to provide services in their field. The people who receive services benefit from the expertise of the center, which provides education, evaluation and treatment to people who need it. Technical assistance is provided to entities that require help as they implement policies relating to disability.

Ecology Center

Ecology is increasingly interdisciplinary, and ecologists have diverse training backgrounds. The Ecology program at Utah State includes affiliated faculty members from 11 departments in 5 colleges and fellow students with many different interests. The Ecology curriculum is research-based and includes a common but flexible core of seminars and courses, along with specific departmental degree requirements and a research thesis or dissertation.

Acceptance into the Ecology degree program requires acceptance by a faculty member who will serve as advisor for the degree program. If you are interested in studying Ecology at Utah State, you should contact the Faculty Associate(s) whose areas of research align with your professional interests. Inquiries sent to the Ecology Center will be routed to appropriate department(s), department head(s), or faculty member(s).

Utah Water Research Laboratory

The Utah Water Research Laboratory (UWRL) is a stand-alone facility located at USU on the Logan River. The UWRL operates within an academic environment and collaborates with government and private sectors to address technical and societal aspects of water-related issues, including quality, quantity, distribution and conjunctive use. This is accomplished through providing more than 100,000 square feet of state-of-the-art laboratory, computer, and office space.

Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art

The Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art (NEHMA) is an academic art museum dedicated to modern and contemporary art. NEHMA serves the students and faculty across USU through a collection of over 5,000 objects and rotating exhibitions of permanent and traveling artworks. Last year, it provided direct support to thousands of students via customized tours, museum-based assignments, film screenings, concerts and lectures. As the only accredited art museum serving Cache Valley and Northern Utah, NEHMA also plays a vital role for community patrons and Logan tourism. These include numerous children and adults from K-12 programs and civic organizations who engage in educational programming at the Museum. Annual attendance to the museum is typically above 10,000.

Research is essential to NEHMA’s mission to collect, preserve and exhibit modern and contemporary visual art with an emphasis on artists from the Western United States and includes research on current artworks in NEHMA’s collection, as well as planned exhibitions. Other areas involve exhibition design, educational programming and curriculum connections. As a collecting institution, research is an ongoing process for curatorial staff and is supported through interns, researchers and student staff.

ASPIRE Engineering Research Center

Advancing Sustainability through Powered Infrastructure for Roadway Electrification, the ASPIRE Center seeks to improve health and quality of life for everyone by catalyzing sustainable and equitable electrification across the transportation industries. Solutions include plug-in and wireless charging systems that are integrated into roadways, parking structures and networked with the electric grid and traffic management systems. Efforts are integrated across multiple disciplines, including engineering, social science, policy, and business through close collaboration with industry, government, and community partners.