Technology transfer

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Technology Transfer, also called Transfer of Technology (TOT) and Technology Commercialisation, is the process of transferring skills, knowledge, technologies, methods of manufacturing, samples of manufacturing and facilities among governments or universities and other institutions to ensure that scientific and technological developments are accessible to a wider range of users who can then further develop and exploit the technology into new products, processes, applications, materials or services. It is closely related to (and may arguably be considered a subset of) knowledge transfer.

Some also consider technology transfer as a process of moving promising research topics into a level of maturity ready for bulk manufacturing or production.[citation needed]

Technology brokers are people who discovered how to bridge the emergent worlds and apply scientific concepts or processes to new situations or circumstances.[1] A related term, used almost synonymously, is "technology valorisation". While conceptually the practice has been utilized for many years (in ancient times, Archimedes was notable for applying science to practical problems), the present-day volume of research, combined with high-profile failures at Xerox PARC and elsewhere[citation needed], has led to a focus on the process itself.

==Transfer process== Many companies, universities and governmental organizations now have an Office of Technology Transfer (TTO, also known as "Tech Transfer" or "TechXfer") dedicated to identifying research which has potential commercial interest and strategies for how to exploit it. For instance, a research result may be of scientific and commercial interest, but patents are normally only issued for practical processes, and so someone—not necessarily the researchers—must come up with a specific practical process. Another consideration is commercial value; for example, while there are many ways to accomplish nuclear fusion, the ones of commercial value are those that generate more energy than they require to operate. The process to commercially exploit research varies widely. It can involve licensing agreements or setting up joint ventures and partnerships to share both the risks and rewards of bringing new technologies to market. Other corporate vehicles, e.g. spin-outs, are u


Despite incentives to move research into production, the practical aspects are sometimes difficult to perform in practice. Using DoD Technology Readiness Levels as a criterion (for example), Research tends to focus on TRL 1-3, while readiness for production tends to focus on TRL 6-7 or higher. Bridging TRL-3 to TRL-6 has proven to be difficult in some organizations. Attempting to rush research (prototypes) into production (fully tested under diverse conditions, reliable, maintainable. etc.) tends to be more costly and time-consuming than expected.[2]

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