USTAR (Utah Science, Technology and Research) is a new initiative passed by the Utah legislature in 2006 that will provide long-term economic benefits for the state.

USTAR is designed to help Utah keep pace in scientific research and technological

advancement. These efforts will directly translate to a stronger economy, high-paying jobs, increased tax revenue and better quality of life.

The program allocates funding for research teams and facilities at Utah State University and the University of Utah, as well as technology outreach centers located at strategic locations throughout the state.  USTAR research teams will make discoveries and inventions that can be commercialized in new businesses and industries.

Under the USTAR program, researchers have come to Utah State University to develop new major research teams. Dr. Krishna Shenai will lead a research team in the area of intelligent systems engineering.  Shenai’s research pertains to solid-state energy conditioning in a wide range of industrial, commercial, military and space applications.

Shenai earned his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University in 1986.  He held the position of senior scientist at COMSAT Labs, General Electric Corporate R&D Center, and Intel Corporation. He also has worked at the University of Wisconsin – Madison and the University of Illinois, where he was a tenured professor.

Another USTAR professor, David York directed research at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He will be adding to USU’s nutrition research by studying animal models of obesity, mechanisms that control food intake and nutrient selection, and metabolic hormone dependence in animal obesity.

York earned his Ph.D. in physiology from the University of Southampton in 1969.  He conducted postdoctoral research at the Medical Center Hospital in Boston, Mass. and the UCLA School of Medicine.  He has worked at Southampton University medical School and the Louisiana State University System.

These and other new USTAR researchers will be publishing their research results, growing their sponsored research funding, and promoting technology commercialization by filing invention disclosures, patent applications, and applying for business-related grants and programs while at Utah State University.