CELEST facilitates transfer of the models and knowledge developed within CELEST to industry through a new initiative called the CELEST Catalyst. The Catalyst facilitates many technology transfer activities including, but not limited to, building industrial partnerships, marketing CELEST models and technologies on the internet, assisting in SBIR/STTR grant development, promoting internships for students in partner companies, and creating computing infrastructure for technology development.
The Catalyst builds off of and expands the technology efforts directed by Gail Carpenter in the first five years of CELEST, which were primarily focused on implementing neuromorphic approaches to solve real-world data analysis problems. This work is described at the CNS Technology Lab web site, which maintains a software repository and a database of neural technology and development articles. This work was very successful and has recently attracted two large projects to Boston University funded by the DARPA SyNAPSE (Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics) program: one in collaboration with HRL Laboratories and one in collaboration with HP, Inc. For more information on the SyNAPSE Program, see the Neurdon site.
In addition, the CELEST Board has decided to focus a portion of the center resources dedicated to technology development to a less mature, high-risk, high-payoff problem: that of the development of Brain Machine Interfaces (BMIs). These efforts (as exemplified by the work of Frank Guenther that enables locked-in patients to produce synthetic speech sounds) are a new direction of the technology development efforts in CELEST going forward.