Tech Launch Arizona and Its Personal Touch

Sept. 28, 2015

Tech Launch Arizona works with University of Arizona research units to bring their inventions to market, including chemist Jeff Pyun's group that is developing processes to use sulfur to create battery technology and polymers. The new plastic has promise as something that can be produced easily and inexpensively on an industrial scale — a discovery that could provide a new use for the sulfur left over when oil and natural gas are refined into cleaner-burning fuels.

Paul Eynott, a licensing manager with TLA, works extensively with UA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. Eynott says the department is one of the most prolific sources of commercially viable products and processes on campus.

At the UA, commercialization of research is more than boardroom meetings and disclosure statements.

"The trust that's created is outside the practice statements and outside the confines of the University," says Eynott, who recently pulled an all-nighter working with Pyun and an outside law firm hired by TLA that helped draft and file a patent application for a process Pyun was presenting the next day. 

Eynott and Pyun will even get together for golf.

"We'll talk about science and disclosure," Eynott says, "and I can guarantee you we'll get more invention disclosures from a round of golf than sitting at meetings."