University-managed Research Facilities Research and Innovation

University-managed facilities are labs, equipment, space and technology — any kind of infrastructure — that enable faculty, students and external research partners to conduct high-level, solutions-based research in key areas. This infrastructure — from physical space to high-end research equipment to innovative technology — is key to research that leads to discovery or enrichment in a field. Often, the unique suites of equipment are housed together in a shared facility or at a research park where the environment itself fosters collaboration and new ideas. Why use a university-managed research facility?

University-managed research facilities are unique in that they enable internal collaborations and access to equipment beyond the reach of most individual researchers.


With these facilities, comes the brainpower and manpower to research, execute and commercialize new ideas. A university has researchers — experts in chosen fields — who have dedicated themselves to exploring, testing and creating solutions. And through shared research facilities, they have the latest, high-tech equipment and space to carry out the most sophisticated research projects and analysis.

As noted by the Association of University Research Parks, “University research parks provide a best practice means of focusing on innovation and sustaining economic competitiveness.” More simply put, a university research, such as UNT’s Discovery Park can catalyze technology-based economic development. By their very nature and design, university research parks can foster good university-industry partnerships by bringing academics and entrepreneurship together in one place. Proximity matters. The ability to work together in person promotes a quicker, more dynamic exchange of ideas, experience and expertise.

Location matters. Startups and high tech firms often form around universities and research parks. These firms take advantage of the innovative research, highly skilled labor and resources that universities offer. Think Silicon Valley to Stanford University. Or the Research Triangle to University North Carolina-Chapel Hill, North Carolina State University and Duke University. UNT’s Discovery Park

The North Texas region’s largest research park with nearly 300 acres of space dedicated to the sciences, technology and engineering, UNT’s Discovery Park is located 5 miles north of the UNT main campus in Denton, Texas. It includes a 554,000 square foot building, which also is occupied by the College of Engineering, the College of Information and the Center for Information and Computer Security and supports interactive and multidisciplinary STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) research, education and training that benefits students, faculty and the community, and expands economic development by developing industry-university partnerships.

UNT’s Discovery Park features several state-of-the-art research labs such as the Materials Research Facility (MRF), a facility with high-powered microscopes for 3-D characterization and processing, and the Greenhouse Complex, a climate-controlled facility equipped with an expandable infrastructure to accommodate diverse growing conditions, including high ceilings to grow sugarcane and other tall plants. Generating creative innovation

As UNT has expanded its research enterprise, the university has built exceptional research facilities and martialed expertise in an array of innovative research areas to develop its capability for fundamental and applied research, technology transfer, and ultimately business incubation. This is key to encouraging startups and partnering with industry and business to commercialize research that tackles real-world issues.