Science & Technology

Science & Technology

From the tree-lined campus of the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology (SDSMT) to the mile-deep darkness of the Sanford Underground Research Facility, science and technology are center-stage in the Rushmore Region.

South Dakota School of Mines & Technology

For more than 130 years, SDSMT has produced top-notch graduates in science and engineering academics and research, developing the next generation of problem-solvers and future leaders. Whether it’s exploring the latest in robotics, computer programming, building a concrete canoe or pushing the limits of 3D printing, their students have helped their institution evolve into one of the leading science and engineering universities in the country. – Visit Site

Ascent Innovation Center

Community support, state and national grant awards, professional expertise, and strong leadership and drive have contributed to the successful Ascent Innovation Center, a Rapid City business incubator. Established in 2006, the current center is located on the SDSMT campus. In 2019, construction began on a multi-million dollar expansion into the downtown district which will create a bridge between student talent and commercial industry housed within a legacy building. Over 30 companies have been admitted to the Ascent Innovation Center, resulting in more than 400 jobs during their tenancies. Today, the center has reached 95% capacity with 20 tenants, and over 75 employees. Current tenants have an estimated total annual payroll of $4.9M+ with the average wage reaching upward of $74,000, and with student internships reaching $20/hr.– Visit Site

Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF)

At the Sanford Lab deep below the earth’s surface in Lead, scientists from around the world are working to unravel the mysteries of the universe. SURF supports world-leading research in particle and nuclear physics and other science disciplines. While it was still a gold mine, the facility hosted Ray Davis's solar neutrino experiment, which shared the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physics. Sanford Lab’s overall impact on the Rushmore Region economy totals nearly $200 million in spending since 2008 and includes a $28.1 million total annual budget. Sanford Lab's dedication to science, research and development and engineering, as well as its innovative approach to education, make it a world-leading science research facility. – Visit Site