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Other Prominent Research Units

Virginia Tech Transportation Institute-Initially called the Center for Transportation Research, the center was formed in 1988 and today is a federally designated Intelligent Transportation Systems Research Center of Excellence. It focuses on advanced technology evaluation and deployment, and its primary areas of research are safety and human factors, traffic and transit engineering, technology and policy deployment, pavement, and “smart road” operations. It has gained national attention for its research and for its Smart Road, a transportation research laboratory located in Montgomery County.

Fralin Life Science Institute-A 2008 merger of the Institute for Biomedical and Public Health and the Fralin Biotechnology Center, which moved to a state-of-the-art facility in 1995. The institute has major initiatives in plant genetic engineering, nitrogen fixation, environmental biotechnology, microbial toxins, deciphering the genes of microbes that live in extreme environments, and vaccine development. It also provides strategic support to enhance biomedical research at the university. Undergraduate education is a major component of its mission.

Center for Adhesive and Sealant Science-The Center for Adhesive Science was founded in 1982 with funding from the Office of Naval Research. Its name was changed to Center for Adhesive and Sealant Science (CASS) in 1987 to reflect the addition of sealant research and endowment support from the Adhesives and Sealants Council, a national organization of major manufacturers, distributors, and commercial users of adhesive and sealant materials. The purpose of CASS is to create a new science of adhesion based on development of a single, integrated interdisciplinary program of education and research that involve chemistry, mechanics, and materials.

Joseph F. Ware Jr. Advanced Engineering Laboratory-Joseph F. Ware Jr. '37 and his wife, Jenna, funded conversion of the Virginia Tech military laundry building to a facility dedicated solely to undergraduate student projects. The Joseph F. Ware Jr. Advanced Engineering Laboratory, popularly known as the Ware Lab, was established in 1998. It includes numerous work bays, a welding shop, the Arthur C. Klages Machine Shop (Klages '42 donated tools and equipment to furnish the shop), a computer design lab using state-of-the-art software donated by corporations, and a multi-use project bay. In 2010 more than 420 students worked on 19 projects. Among the projects are a vehicle that can propel through deep water and through difficult terrain and weather conditions on land; a vehicle that can be driven independently by a blind person; a human-powered aircraft; a human-powered submarine; the world's first student-designed, fuel cell-powered car and SUV; and solar-powered houses in collaboration with students from other disciplines.