NIAR's longtime association with MTS Systems leads to financial support

The Minnesota manufacturer makes testing equipment essential to NIAR's mission

The new Aircraft Structural Test and Evaluation Center (ASTEC) at the Kansas Coliseum contains a large variety of equipment made by MTS Systems.
The new Aircraft Structural Test and Evaluation Center (ASTEC) at the Kansas Coliseum contains a large variety of equipment made by MTS Systems.
 

In the past 25 years, WSU’s National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) has built an international reputation for the quality and reliability of its structural testing of aircraft and aircraft components.   

    During most of that time, the equipment it has used to conduct those tests — load frames, hydraulic pumps, piston actuators and more — has been built, installed, calibrated and maintained by MTS Systems Corp., based in Eden Prairie, Minn.

    The relationship between MTS and NIAR is based on deep trust, mutual respect and an eagerness to work as a team, says Mike Nohr, MTS regional sales manager who works directly with NIAR’s staff. In honor of that relationship, MTS recently pledged a donation of $100,000 to NIAR, bringing to $300,000 the total amount the company has contributed since 2004.

    “It really does go beyond the sale of equipment to NIAR,” Nohr says. “We work side by side, we learn from each other, and this allows both of us to perform at a higher level to provide technology solutions to our customers and to NIAR’s customers. We develop engineering solutions together.” 

“NIAR has become a world-class showcase for MTS equipment. They provide us with a very reputable and respected customer reference.”

- Mike Nohr of MTS Systems Corp.

    NIAR Executive Director John Tomblin calls MTS an essential partner in the creation of the new Aircraft Structural Test and Evaluation Center (ASTEC) at the Kansas Coliseum's former Britt Brown Arena.

    “Without MTS the Coliseum renovation would have been virtually impossible,” Tomblin says. “They are the world’s largest supplier of this kind of testing equipment. We rely heavily on their expertise and on the quality of their products and service.”

    In recognition of the donation made by MTS, NIAR’s customer service area at the Coliseum facility will feature the company’s name and logo, Tomblin said.

    Now that ASTEC is up and running, NIAR will be able to compete with large research universities around the world not only in the field of aerospace, but in any other field primarily related to transportation, including cars, boats, trains, even spacecraft, Tomblin said.

John Tomblin, executive director of the National Institute for Aviation Research at WSU, inspects a piece of equipment from MTS Systems Corp.

John Tomblin, executive director of the National Institute for Aviation Research at WSU, inspects a piece of equipment from MTS Systems Corp.

    MTS’ donation will be used to support research and development at NIAR, Nohr said. The work that NIAR does on advanced materials and aerostructural testing in turn gives MTS insight into the testing needs of its customers, he said.

    “NIAR has become a world-class showcase for MTS equipment,” Nohr said. “They provide us with a very reputable and respected customer reference. We truly believe that what NIAR is doing will influence other potential customers of MTS.”

  

circle arrow If you would like to help advance the mission of the National Institute for Aviation Research, please contact Megan Smith, WSU Foundation director of development for the College of Engineering, at 316-978-3803 or at megan.smith@wichita.edu.

 
 
 
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