Energy Research & Development

Energy Research & Development

  • Research and development (R&D), and the innovation it brings, represents a critically important driver of the modern U.S. economy. Technology-based economic development is seen as key to state competitiveness.
  • R&D is important to Mississippi as it generates advanced technologies and innovations that launch new commercial products, new industries, or provide the means to enhance productivity in existing industries.
  • Examples of how R&D is important to the energy industry can be found in sophistication of drilling technologies, more automated and efficient refining and combustion processes, cleaner plant emissions, and improved composite materials.
  • Patents are one measure of R&D driven innovation. However, Mississippi produced only 17 patents in energy and energy-related technologies over the course of the recent decade, with one company accounting for 7 out of the 17.
  • Mississippi ranks 35th in the nation in terms of total gross domestic product (GDP), and the state has a lower rank in terms of industry R&D performance – ranking 43st. In comparison, Mississippi’s academic research institutions are “punching above their weight”, ranking Mississippi 33rd in academic R&D expenditures.
  • Mississippi’s research institutions perform well in federal R&D funding for research in science and engineering disciplines that may have direct relevance to energy issues. Because Mississippi has few commercial companies operating R&D centers in the state (especially in the energy space), the role of Mississippi’s research universities as innovation engines is critically important. 

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