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Center for Industrial Research and Service (CIRAS)

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The Center for Industrial Research and Service (CIRAS) is jointly part of the College of Engineering and Office of Economic Development and Industrial Relations at Iowa State University. CIRAS helps companies grow and prosper.

The CIRAS mission is to improve the quality of life in Iowa by enhancing the performance of industry through applied research, education, and technical assistance. CIRAS has been working with companies in communities across Iowa for more than 50 years, based on a vision that communities are better when they contain prosperous businesses. Because multiple resources are necessary to meet the needs of Iowa companies, CIRAS partners with Iowa's universities, community colleges, government agencies, and business associations throughout the state. Since 1963, CIRAS has provided Iowa manufacturers with the training, tools, and connections needed to accelerate innovation, identify new opportunities in domestic and export markets, and maximize potential. CIRAS services involve providing five main categories of assistance for Iowa businesses: Leadership, Growth, Productivity, Technology, and Workforce.

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Success Stories

New Normal: Dickson Industries Growing with Gowns

Reported Year
Dickson Industries made its name making medical fabrics and garments before venturing into various lines of food-industry clothing and preconsumer products, such as specialized netting used to enhance the flavor of meat during smoking. When the coronavirus decimated demand for food-industry products, Dickson officials realized that they were

Methodical detective work by a CIRAS metallurgist helped an Iowa computer company keep a new product on track and preserved the potential for an estimated $25 million in new sales.

Reported Year
Crystal Group was working on machines for a new autonomous vehicle in spring 2019 when the company noticed a problem-- corrosion in the computers' cooling systems. Crystal Group contacted CIRAS, the Iowa Center for Industrial Research and Services, part of the MEP National Network™, for help finding the cause and identifying a solution.
Created March 18, 2019, Updated May 18, 2021