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Hilti signs co-location agreement with Newmarket Innovation Precinct

30 May 2018
(Left to right) Professor Jason Ingham, Jerry Ma, Professor Charles Clifton and Dr Quincy Ma

Hilti has signed a co-location agreement with the Newmarket Innovation Precinct after undertaking a number of successful commercial research projects at the campus.

The arrangement will allow Hilti to further strengthen its connections with the Faculty of Engineering. Its aim is to grow the nature of the collaboration from a small base of commercial testing work and short term research contracts into a long-term, beneficial relationship between the two parties.

Our Newmarket Campus-based projects so far align with Hilti’s goals concerning transparent safety. While this kind of safety testing is vital for Hilti’s own products, the tests have a wider industry impact as well. For example, a research project focusing on post-install anchor seismic performance in hollow-core floor will work to eliminate anchor designing errors being made in current building practices.

The co-location agreement means that Hilti’s on-site staff will have a dedicated work space and the freedom to connect with our staff and students. This will help to build closer relationships and further enable Hilti to leverage the vast expertise in our faculty’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

It’s this renowned expertise that motivated Hilti to collaborate with an educational institution rather than another industry brand. Hilti’s Code and Approvals Specialist Jerry Ma states that there are multiple cases where other brands have a different understanding or expertise that doesn’t always align with Hilti’s R&D-centric approach.

“There are many ways to understand things but we wanted to trust the expertise of the right people and to build credibility,” Jerry said. “Hilti can now put forward suggestions to the NZ industry with university expertise and backing. This comes with a high level of credibility.”

Hilti wants to use this expertise to identify industry gaps and solve both current and potential future issues. Some of the major areas of focus include seismic research, contributing to new and existing product designs and verifying work that has been completed by consulting firms. The research will be both practical and theory-based.

The arrangement was encouraged by the fact Hilti already had a global model that directs its collaboration with universities. Along with ongoing research projects, this model will offer recruitment options for Engineering students either as interns at Hilti or as full-time staff members.