Research & Innovation

In South Carolina, we understand that competitiveness requires a commitment to research and development. The Palmetto State offers a plethora of opportunities and support, from universities to world-class research facilities.

"The company's Greenville plant is a model for the kind of high-tech, export-oriented manufacturing business the United States must develop to remain globally competitive... Every dollar we've ever invested in this site has generated a very good return for GE's investors." –Jeffrey Immelt, Chairman and CEO, GE


Created to facilitate applied research, product development and commercialization programs, SCLaunch® strengthens South Carolina’s knowledge base by creating high wage-earning jobs. It also provides entrepreneurs with tool to build new businesses and equity in South Carolina.

Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR)

This state-of-the-art advanced technology research campus is where academia, industry and government organizations collaborate. With more than $215 million in public and private investment, CU-ICAR represents the ultimate private-public partnership and fuels the automotive and mobility industries in South Carolina.


Designed to support federal and corporate work, SCRA provides research parks, wet labs, secure facilities, advanced manufacturing and IT infrastructure. Its world-class facilities are critical to supporting start-ups and Innovation Centers at each of the state’s three research universities – Clemson University, the Medical University of South Carolina and the University of South Carolina.

Southeastern Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SiMT)

Located on a 146-acre campus, SiMT is the premiere technical service provider and training facility for industry in the southeastern U.S. SiMT provides engineering, CAD and CAM, rapid prototyping, and 3D and virtual reality services. SiMT also provides manufacturing workforce and process training.

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC)

MUSC is the oldest medical school in the South. With more than $234 million in research awards, MUSC continues to expand research and promote scientific discovery and economic development.

University of South Carolina NanoCenter (USC)

With research areas including nanoelectronics, polymer nanocomposites and nanoimaging, USC is an abundant resource for technology companies in South Carolina. USC has a proven track record of adding value to industrial partners like Michelin and MeadWestvaco through joint research and development programs. USC is also a designated DOE Energy Frontier Research Center and holds the highest research designation awarded by the Carnegie Foundation.

Clemson University Restoration Institute

A $98 million, one-of-a-kind wind turbine facility is under construction at the Restoration Institute in North Charleston. The test facility will advance wind turbine technology, improving reliability and efficiency.

SmartState™ Program

The SmartState™ Program authorizes the state’s three public research institutions to create Centers of Economic Excellence to advance research, boost the state’s economy and maintain competitiveness. Nearly 50 centers have been created and more than 35 internationally recognized scientists and engineers have been recruited in areas including energy, nanotechnology, medicine and optics. More than $363 million in non-state funds have been invested, with nearly two-thirds coming from corporations and foundation.