Several years ago, American software giant PTC and the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology jointly launched a robotics and digital content program as part of the Faculty of Education in Science and Technology. The collaboration sprouted a new teaching lab for a variety of tech focused research, such as IoT, AR, computer-aided design and manufacturing, and others. Since then, hundreds of learning minds have conducted research at the lab, publishing results worldwide, and even developing an educational robot that met a couple world leaders - President Barack Obama and PM Benjamin Netanyahu.
PTC R&D moving on campus
The Boston based company has since then continued to reap the benefits and immense potential coming from a direct partnership with one of Israel’s leading tech institutes. This has even led PTC to now expand its collaboration with the Technion; investing a little over $4.5 million to establish a new R&D center on campus. Furthermore, the company announced that it would assist the Technion in research and in upgrading learning processes across a broad range of disciplines related to advanced manufacturing technology.
“Today, scientific and technological breakthroughs need multidisciplinary research and close collaboration between academia and industry. Industry is at the forefront of active implementation and is well-acquainted with market needs, whereas academia brings basic scientific knowledge and research depth. This is why, in the past few years, the Technion has placed greater emphasis on working to tighten its connections with industry, and the present agreement, which will lead to the establishment of a PTC branch on-campus, is the culmination of a long-standing relationship between the Technion and the Company and will enable both parties to gain ground, to grow and to reap the benefits of this collaboration.”
PTC also committed to forming a community of companies focused on collaboration. As part of the agreement, PTC will move its entire Haifa development center, and its 100 employees, to a new building on campus grounds to better facilitate research collaboration. Dr. Michael Reitman will take lead of the new R&D center, and the company reports that it intends to expand over the next few years.
Additionally, the company is to allocate a large-scale yearly budget for joint research in strategic spheres, including IoT, augmented reality, simulation and generative design. The company will also support all Technion faculties, providing software products, awarding scholarships and incentives to students and researchers, initiating hackathons and contests, and will be actively involved in educational programs.
NASDAQ listed PTC develops technologies that help its global customer base manage their product life cycle, from planning through manufacturing to operation and maintenance. Among the company’s customers we find market giants, such as Caterpillar, Toyota, GE, Samsung, Dell, Toshiba, Motorola, and others. PTC first established its Israeli development center in 1991, and like many other tech giants it was its first R&D presence outside of the U.S. Today, PTC employs hundreds of Israelis at both of their Israel-based development centers.
Ziv Belfer, Division Vice President of Global Research and Development and PTC Israel CEO, said “The importance of collaboration between academia and industry is recognized worldwide. In this context, PTC has racked up fifteen especially successful years of collaboration with Aachen University in Germany, which included the construction of a separate campus that also houses R&D laboratories for companies that collaborate with the academic staff. Several successful projects were also established along the same lines, which subsequently become commercial companies. Now we want to replicate this success with the Technion and the Israeli market.”