28 Nov 2021

Cutting-edge Waterford IT research centres awarded share of €6 million

Cutting-edge Waterford IT research centres awarded share of €6 million

Frances Cleary (TSSG), Dr Ramesh Raghavendra (SEAM), Jerry Horgan (TSSG) and Dr Niall O’Reilly (PMBRC)

Three research centres at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) which are also Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Centres –SEAM, TSSG, and PMBRC – have been awarded a share of the €6m Capital Equipment Fund administered by Enterprise Ireland through the Technology Gateway Network Programme.

There were 43 successful applicants from the Institutes of Technology and TU Dublin. All three of WIT’s three technology gateways were approved for funding.

SEAM (South Eastern Applied Materials) was awarded funding for a material analysis suite. TSSG will receive funding for a mixed reality innovation lab, which includes virtual reality and augmented reality. PMBRC’s application for an x-ray diffractometre was also successful.

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys announced the successful applicants. “The successful applicants announced are housing research projects and initiatives that are at the cutting-edge of innovation, and I am confident that they have the potential to make a real and lasting impact on enterprise development at both a regional and national level," she said.

“Through Future Jobs Ireland, our whole-of-Government framework to prepare for the future economy, we want Ireland to become a leader in technology adoption. This Capital Equipment Fund will support Institutes of Technology and TU Dublin in buying equipment relating to new technologies and is another step towards realising this ambition.”

Welcoming the announcement, WIT president Prof Willie Donnelly said: “Research and innovation at WIT plays a pivotal role in ensuring that industry in the South East are at the cutting edge of knowledge. The three Technology Gateways are central to the translation of that research into products and services for the regional industry. This award recognises that role and will ensure that the gateways extend the scope and impact of its engagement with their regional industry partners. This will drive further high technology employment in the region.”

SEAM centre director and Technology Gateway manager Dr Ramesh Raghavendra said: “SEAM is delighted to secure this funding to procure diverse range of equipment as they will greatly broaden SEAM’s capabilities and service offering to industries of wide ranging sectors. Furthermore, this suite of equipment will assist SEAM’s vision of servicing more than 250 industries over the next couple of years, while growing the capabilities we offer through advanced research and continuous upgrading of our equipment infrastructure.”

PMBRC Manager Dr Niall O’Reilly said: “Over the last decade we have built up significant expertise in the solid state characterisation of materials used in the pharmaceutical, medical device, food and engineering industries. X-ray diffraction is a key piece of equipment for the detection of crystallinity and crystal forms which can have a significant impact on product quality. This infrastructure award from Enterprise Ireland will greatly enhance our research capability and offering to our industry partners.”

TSSG director of innovation Kevin Doolin said: “TSSG have been working in the mixed reality domain for a number of years and this funding win will enable us to advance our research capabilities to showcase and enhance our developed applications and to support the visualisation and demonstration aspects of this technology to our industry partners. We are thrilled with this Capital Equipment Fund win as we grow our mixed reality research in multiple sectors such as health, education and pharma.”

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