MANHATTAN (KSNT) – A Canadian company announced Tuesday it will open a new manufacturing plant in Manhattan.
HydroGraph Clean Power Inc. will use its new facility to produce graphene which is a nanomaterial used by a wide range of industries along with hydrogen for alternative-energy fuels. Manhattan was chosen as the new location as Hydrograph has been collaborating with Kansas State University for several years.
“The close proximity of our manufacturing facility to our research partners at Kansas State University will help us maintain our competitive advantage with a virtuous cycle between our commercial production and continuing R&D (Research and Development),” said Stuart Jara, Chief Executive Office of HydroGraph.
HydroGraph exclusively licensed the patented detonation process first discovered by Chris Sorensen, a teaching scholar at K-State University and a distinguished professor with Cortelyou-Rust University, in 2017. According to Jara, Sorensen’s method creates the most consistent, high-quality and cost-effective graphene available on the market and leaves the lowest environmental footprint.
“Watching the research grow from a patentable discovery to an international company has been an exciting and rewarding process,” said Aarushi Gupta, licensing associate with K-State Innovation Partners. “The global impact our world-class researchers have is truly incredible.”
Production is set to start in the Manhattan pilot-scale facility as early as fall 2022. The location has been established in an existing building in Pottawatomie County. The company plans to expand to a larger production facility and create more than 100 high-paying jobs in the Manhattan area.
“HydroGraph is the type of company we want to attract to Kansas, and we are thrilled they chose Manhattan as their new home,” said Lt. Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland. “International investment and innovation-based growth are important economic drivers for Kansas, and we are proud to partner with HydroGraph to grow the innovation ecosystem in the state.”
K-State’s Innovation Partners and Manhattan’s Knowledge Based Economic Development worked together to facilitate the company’s manufacturing presence in the area.
“This project aligns with our community’s economic development strategies to drive innovation and entrepreneurship and is a prime example of how targeted economic growth can work when university, community and industry partners come together behind a common goal,” said Jason Smith, president/CEO of the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce and chair of the KBED board.