Advanced Technologies Group, forward thinking R&D company, is an integral part of Martin County's aviation-aerospace sector.



John Justak is in the business of innovation. As the founder Advanced Technologies Group, Inc., of one of Florida's leading aerospace engineering and technology firms, Justak and his staff have been developing advanced solutions to challenging problems for public and private sector clients since 1995.

ATGI designs, develops, manufactures and tests prototypes for a variety of markets, including aerospace, defense, homeland security, transportation, marine and ocean systems and medicine and healthcare. The company also offers its expertise in engineering and analysis to small and large companies around the country.


Justak grew up in Indiana and went to earn his bachelor's in Ocean Engineering from Florida Institute of Technology. He worked at several engineering jobs in Florida and New Hampshire, including Pratt & Whitney. He founded ATGI in 1995 and obtained funding from the highly competitive Small Business Innovation Research program, which encourages entrepreneurs like Justak to produce innovative projects that solve government problems and can also be used commercially.


As a result of these awards, ATGI has produced hardware for military and commercial jet-engines that reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions as well as an optical mass gauge sensor that can be used in zero-gravity environments and an active balance system that's powered by light.


One of the company's projects relates to wind turbine power generation on aircraft, so Justak and his staff are testing turbines using the small wind tunnel housed at ATGI's 4,500- square-foot Stuart facility, which includes offices and lab space. In addition, the U.S. Naval Air System Command asked the company to develop a low-drag 60-kilowatt generator for its EA-18G attack jet.


Since its inception, ATGI has been awarded six patents and has six more pending. It has won 13 SBIR awards and took home the top SBIR prize, the National Tibbetts Award, in 2007. In 2008, the company received the Governor's Business Diversification Award for advancing Florida's economy through job creation, distinctive community involvement and capital investment.


The Business Development Board of Martin County gave ATGI a Business Innovation Award that same year.


Justak said his company is having its best year yet. He plans to stay in Martin County and expand his staff. His growth strategy also includes working with the BDBMC to lobby the state for more R&D funding.


"Our goal is to get Florida to match the federal funds awarded through the SBIR," Justak said. "A lot of other states are already doing this, so it's the best way to retain small businesses that are growing in Florida."


Additional funding gives small, privately owned companies like ATGI an edge when they compete with large corporations for the next military or NASA contract.


"We've gone up against Honeywell and Lockheed and were awarded funding because of our unique talents and analytical capabilities," Justak said. "We're providing innovative solutions to problems no one else is working on."

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