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Commercial Applications 

Faculty, staff, and students in the Department are transitioning research ideas into commercial opportunities. This work has been facilitated by the Center for Technology & Venture Commercialization ( ).  These efforts include:

Who: MesoWest team led by Prof. John Horel

What: Drawing on the experience and skills of the University of Utah’s MesoWest program and selected partners in industry and academia, Synoptic scored early success providing groundbreaking support to NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS) as part of the National Mesonet Program. In the years since, Synoptic has continued to spearhead this highly successful Public-Private Partnership and is now serving as one of the Program's Lead Subcontractors. By facilitating access to various datasets and bridging the gap between the NWS and the Program’s partners, Synoptic has increased exposure for and use of millions of observations that were otherwise unavailable to the NWS, forming the backbone of a unique collaborative partnership that continues to thrive. Additionally, Synoptic operates a robust API that provides access to millions of daily surface observations with time granularity down to minutes.  We are continuing to refine our technology and add new capabilities as we steadily expand to meet the needs of a growing private and public sector customer base.


Particle Flux Analytics


Who: Prof. Tim Garrett
What: Incubated at the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Utah under the leadership of Prof. Tim Garrett, Particle Flux Analytics develops and sells novel precipitation measurement technologies. It’s leading product is the Multi-Angle Snowflake Camera, a photographic system that takes 30 micron resolution images of hydrometeors in free fall from three angles while simultaneously measuring their fallspeed. Customers include government, military and university agencies in the Canada, Korea, Switzerland, France, and the United States. Research using the MASC has led to over 20 publications in peer-reviewed journals describing measurements in cold regions from the Arctic to the Antarctic.
Scribe Logger

Who: Ryan Bares and Ben Fasoli, Alumni/Research Associates

What: Scribe Sciences is developing end to end data collection systems that are easy to use, rugged, and highly flexible for scientific and industrial measurements applications. Our dataloggers host real-time data displays and wireless interface with cloud based data storage and user dashboards. We are committed to bringing modern computational components to the datalogging industry.

Quantum Snow
Who: Peter Veals & Trey Alvey, Alumni/Postdoctoral Researchers
What: At a microscopic level, current manmade snow is more similar in structure to sleet or freezing drizzle than it is to the natural powder that typically falls at Utah’s ski resorts. It does a great job of getting the trails open at the beginning of the season, but it is does not inspire much excitement among skiers. Being both atmospheric scientists and avid skiers, PhD graduates Trey Alvey and Peter Veals wanted to fix this problem and build a snowmaking system that produces the kind of snow that skiers really want to ski. After developing a way to produce crystalline powder snow in the laboratory, they founded Quantum Snow and are now working on their first prototype to begin to scale-up and automate their process. Quantum Snow has won the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute’s “Get Seeded” competition twice, and also won an award at the statewide Utah Entrepreneur Challenge. 


Last Updated: 4/30/21