Physics regularly contributes to the innovations needed to address major technological, economic and societal challenges. This is why relations between the INP and industry - corporations and more recently SMEs - are constantly intensifying. Technology transfer of the INP laboratories' research also involves filing patents and the creation of start-up companies.


Providing solid foundations for technology transfer and innovation

Physics has always had a considerable societal impact. Many scientific advances have been transferred to technology that is now widely marketed in products such as computer chips, CD-ROMs or GPS systems. The INP's research is often carried out far ahead of its later potential industrial applications. Nevertheless it remains a real source of innovation for major societal issues, particularly in the fields of health, materials, sustainable energy and data transfer.

Providing solid foundations for technology transfer and innovation

The INP's technology transfer strategy is constructed in synergy with the objectives defined by the CNRS's Business Relations Department (DRE) and is based on the early involvement of industrial partners in the research process.

The laboratories involve these partners as soon as a promising project with industrial application-potential is identified. This cooperation has led to the creation of two joint research units (UMRs) and 21 joint research laboratories (LCR), including 7 ANR LabComs.

The CNRS/Thales joint physics unit

The CNRS/Thales joint physics laboratory was set up in 1995 in Palaiseau, at Thales Research & Technology, and associates the CNRS, the University of Paris-Saclay and the Thales industrial corporation. Since its creation, the laboratory's research has focused on spintronics, following on from the discovery of giant magnetoresistance by Albert Fert and his team (Nobel Prize in Physics 2007). It was then extended to study heterostructures and superconductors. The research recently contributed to the development of artificial synapses and neurons.

SVI (surface du verre et interfaces[1]) - a joint unit bringing together the CNRS and Saint-Gobain

This joint venture set up in 1990, by the CNRS and Saint-Gobain, conducts joint research to design high-performance materials which address the challenges of sustainable development. Examples of innovative research resulting from this cooperation include: understanding how glass is formed from its initial granular compounds; limiting the energy required to make glass; studying the dewetting of thin metal layers to change the interaction of glass with light; 3D imaging to show how a wet granular material captures new grains during mixing; decoding the behavior of a drop of water on a hydrophobic surface to invent new self-cleaning glass surfaces.

[1] Glass Surfaces and Interfaces

Driving new partnerships

The INP pursues a proactive technology transfer and innovation strategy:

  • by promoting research, by teams and units, to companies to encourage new partnerships;
  • by helping to detect, evaluate and stimulate the innovative potential of teams' and laboratories' projects, and then supporting them in the development and transfer of innovations and breakthrough technologies.

The importance of the INP's relations with companies and the socio-economic sphere is reflected by the existence of:

  • 2 joint units run with industrial companies,
  • 21 joint laboratories, 17 run with companies and 4 with research organizations,
  • 70 active start-up companies,
  • 50 patents filed per year,
  • 3 Carnot Institutes (MICA[2], IPGG Microfluidique[3], STAR - Science and Technology for Research Applications).

[2]           MICA specializes in functional materials, surfaces and interfaces

[3]           Pierre Gilles de Gennes Microfluids Institute

Le programme de prématuration du CNRS

Depuis 2015, le programme de prématuration du CNRS soutient financièrement et accompagne les premières étapes de développement de projets innovants pour faciliter leur transfert vers l’industrie ou la création d’entreprise.

Depuis sa création, le programme de prématuration a financé 53 projets issus des unités CNRS Physique pour 4,5 M€ au total. 

Pour soumettre un projet :

Les porteurs de projet sont invités à soumettre leur projet à et à en adresser une copie au Service Partenariat et Valorisation de leur Délégation Régionale.

Sont éligibles les propositions émanant de chercheurs, chercheuses, enseignantes-chercheuses, enseignants-chercheurs, ingénieures ou ingénieurs relevant d’une unité de recherche rattachée au CNRS.

La soumission des projets se fait au fil de l’eau. Les projets sont examinés d’abord en Comité de direction de l’Institut de physique au début de chaque mois puis en comité de pré-sélection présidé par la Direction générale déléguée à l'innovation et composé des représentants des instituts du CNRS et de CNRS innovation. Le porteur ou la porteuse de projet est invité(e) ensuite à présenter son projet devant un jury de personnalités du monde économique. La décision de financement ou de non-financement lui est communiqué par courrier.

Les actualités Innovation de CNRS Physique

 Découvrez les innovations issues des laboratoires de CNRS Physique ici.