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Records of the University of Kansas Center for Research

 Record Group
Call Number: RG 49


The University of Kansas Center for Research (variously called “CRINC,” “KU Research Center,” and the “KU Center for Research,” or KUCR) is the entity that has traditionally obtained outside funding and support for KU research endeavors. This record group includes records from a variety of mostly unrelated KU research projects, including correspondence, budgetary documents, and research reports.


  • Creation: 1953 - 2018


Conditions Governing Access

Some series in this record group will require permission from the office of origin before use. Personnel and student records are closed in accordance with applicable law. All requests are subject to review by the Archives staff to determine accessibility.

Conditions Governing Use

Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

History of the University of Kansas Center for Research (KUCR)

Centralized oversight of University of Kansas research finds its genesis in the KU Center for Research, Inc., or CRINC. In the late 1950s, the then-dean of the KU School of Engineering, John McNown, proposed CRINC as a Midwestern counterpart to Princeton’s research program. In his letters to faculty at other universities, he argued that CRINC would provide unprecedented funding and autonomy to researchers, who would be able to focus almost exclusively on their own passions and research instead of teaching classes. Over the course of a couple years, CRINC would take shape as a corporation separate from KU but under the oversight of the dean of the KU School of Engineering. In 1959, Chancellor Franklin D. Murphy formally announced the establishment of a research center at the university.

Many of CRINC’s biggest achievements have been in the field of remote sensing: in 1964 the Remote Sensing Laboratory (RSL) was founded under the directorship of Professor Raymond C. Moore. Under Moore’s leadership, the RSL would be a pioneer in the field of radar. In 1967 the RSL conceived of the wind-speed scatterometer, and in 1969 they invented the radar-radiometer. CRINC also funded the establishment of the Kansas Applied Remote Sensing Laboratory (KARS), which was founded in 1972 in conjunction with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, (NASA). KARS researches applications for satellite and air-borne remote sensing systems.

Throughout its early years, CRINC would partner with NASA to conduct research projects and in 1972 to open the Space Technology Center (also called the STC or Space Technology Laboratories), located in Nichols Hall. The STC housed numerous state-of-the-art laboratories for researchers at KU, which are still in use today.

With the success of the RSL and opening of the Space Technology Center, CRINC would continue to grow over the coming decades. In 2005, research from the RSL and KARS would help lead the establishment of a KU-headed Center for the Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS), a partnership between the National Science Foundation (NSF), KU, and several other universities. CReSIS was the result of a $19 million grant from the NSF to establish a new research center at the university under the leadership of Deane Ackers, distinguished professor of engineering, and former computer science professor Prasad Gogineni.

While the CRINC’s beginnings were rooted in science and technology fields, and while this record group mostly focuses on those same fields, the KU Office of Research now administers research institutes across a wide variety of disciplines. In its current form, the Office of Research administers funding and technical support to researchers working at all 12 KU research institutes and their subsidiaries.


87.5 Linear Feet (108 boxes + 3 scrapbooks, 2 oversize boxes, and several folders of photographs)

Language of Materials


Scope and Contents

The University of Kansas Center for Research (variously called “CRINC,” “KU Research Center,” and the “KU Center for Research,” or KUCR) is the entity that obtains outside funding and support for KU research endeavors. For this reason, this record group contains records about various mostly unrelated KU research projects. The institutes and projects whose records make up RG 49 are all tied to the CRINC, but most have no direct ties to each other.

The record group is organized by institute or center, with different subgroups being relevant to different research projects undertaken by the university. These records mostly consist of correspondence and budget documents; however, the record group also contains extensive research reports from the Remote Sensing Laboratory and other KU projects.

Physical Location

RG 49

Related Materials

Consult staff regarding related artifacts and audiovisual materials.

Guide to the Records of the University of Kansas Center for Research
Records of the University of Kansas Center for Research
Finding aid prepared by jb. Finding aid encoded by mwh.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
Records of the University of Kansas Center for Research, RG 49, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas

Repository Details

Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States