HomeAwardsEducation Innovator of the Year - Robert Palmer

Education Innovator of the Year – Robert Palmer

Robert Palmer – Advanced Radar Research Center Executive Director

Robert Palmer and some colleagues established the Advanced Radar Research Center in 2005, and he’s led it ever since. Now, the center is the largest academic radar program in the nation, with about 100 employees expending about $10 million a year working to advance radar science. He’s expecting significant growth too: Palmer expects the center to grow 100-200 percent in the next 2-3 years.

“Our niche in the academic radar community is building complete/ fielded radar systems, including hardware, software and applications,” he said. “Recently, we have focused on phased array radars, which are the most sophisticated radars used for defense applications and more recently by the weather community.”

Palmer said the innovation driving the center is drawing faculty from across the country and students from all over the world.

“There is no other organization like the ARRC in the country,” he said.

“We are academic, but have a start-up feel and culture. Our members (faculty, staff, and students) are the best in the world, and we have put OU on the map regarding innovations in radar. Customers now come to us for solutions.

How does your innovation strategy help drive your growth? As a university research center, we thrive on innovation. Without it, we cannot survive, and honestly, shouldn’t survive.

What role does innovation play in the ARRC? OU and ARRC are now known as the top academic radar program in the country, pushing innovation forward for the betterment of science, the defense industry and the general public.

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