The Battelle Memorial Institute opened in Columbus in 1929. It is one of the nation's first privately endowed independent research and development laboratories.  Battelle is considered a global leader in science and technology, developing and commercializing technology, solving problems for government and industry, and managing laboratories for customers. Battelle, with the national labs that it manages or co-manages, oversees 19,000 staff members and conducts $2.9 billion in annual research and development. Battelle innovations include the development of the office copier machine (Xerox), pioneering work on compact disc technology, medical technology advancements, and fiber optic technologies.

In 1965, Battelle developed the first hot isostatic processing (HIP) vessels, used to make super-strong materials and superalloys for jet engines, nuclear power plants and other high-tech applications. The technology behind the office copier tops the list of the top 10 achievements from Battelle's first 75 years, while next-generation advancements in personal healthcare and renewable energy headline the list of projected advancements over the next 75 years.

Battelle has a strong record of laboratory management, including management or co-management of five Department of Energy (DOE) national labs and the establishment of laboratories in Europe, Asia, and elsewhere around the world. As an organization, Battelle also has a reputation of highly distinguished work in metallurgy (Battelle's original specialty), pioneering nuclear research, and the development of the technology that led to the compact disc. Battelle also occupies a strong position in the field of alternative fuels, especially fuel cells.

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