The Capital Funding Programme provides industry with access to critical, leading-edge equipment and infrastructure which will help them to build resilience.
Industry in the south east of Ireland and beyond is to benefit from an Enterprise Ireland investment in three WIT research centres which are also Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateways. The funding will increase R&D collaboration and competitiveness for companies via access to further cutting edge R&D equipment in Technology Gateways and Centres.
Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD announced the successful applicants of the Capital Equipment Fund administered by Enterprise Ireland through the Technology Gateway and Technology Centre Programmes on 4 June 2020.
All three of WIT’s three technology gateways were approved for funding. Between them the 37 successful applicants from across the Third Level Sector have secured over €6 million in funding.
SEAM: Upgrading of X-ray Tomography Systems
Over the past decade, SEAM has pioneered the use of x-ray computed tomography (XMT) for product design, validation, and failure analysis in Irish industry and has become known as the centre of excellence for XMT in Ireland.
Dr Ramesh RaghavendraSEAM Gateway Manager said: “I am grateful to Enterprise Ireland for this funding as this proposed upgrade will assist SEAM in aiding its vision of expanding its client base from the current 225 to over 350 industries over the next couple of years, while growing the capabilities we offer through advanced research and constant upgrading of our equipment infrastructure.”
TSSG: Smart Material and e-Textile Innovation Living Laboratory (eTex)
The Smart Material and e-Textile Innovation Living Laboratory (eTex) at the TSSG is a first for the South East of Ireland and is being developed with a view to create new opportunities for researchers and industry to further develop and test their smart garment and electronic textile products. The Innovation and Living Lab approach will provide an exciting environment for active, open and user-driven innovation.
Dr Miguel Ponce De Leon Technology Gateway Manager at TSSG said: “Growing use of smart clothing across various industrial verticals such as sports and fitness, healthcare, military & defence, etc. is driving the market globally. TSSG will leverage and utilise this eTex lab to specifically engage with Enterprise Ireland clients, start-ups and existing companies that wish to launch, initiate and investigate potential solutions related to new e-Textile based technology services.”
PMBRC: Differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) instrument for the thermal characterisation of materials
The PMBRC was awarded funding for a state of the art differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) an instrument that measures how material properties change when exposed to different temperatures.
Dr Niall O’Reilly PMBRC Manager said: “This award will modernise our DSC capability and allow us to take advantage of new technological developments in DSC over the past few years. The new DSC system will complement our advanced materials characterisation suite in the PMBRC which includes X-ray diffraction, solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance, rheometry, vapour sorption and electron microscopy.”
Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys TD said: “The Technology Gateway and Technology Centre programmes aim to bring Irish companies together with Irish research institutes to provide near-to-market innovation and solutions in a range of areas, both regionally and nationally. This fund directly supports innovative projects that are emerging from the ground up, providing the necessary technology to our Technology Gateways and Technology Centres to nurture and develop cutting edge research projects.”
Minister Humphreys added: “I am confident the successful projects announced today have the potential to make a positive impact for the benefit of wider society including the development of innovative solutions and methodologies to address immediate national and global needs with respect to the Covid 19 crisis.”
Best in class
Speaking about the announcement Gearoid Mooney, Divisional Manager, Research & Innovation at Enterprise Ireland said: “Access to the best in class technologies can provide a step-change in how companies innovate and develop new and globally differentiated products and services. This important investment in equipment coupled with the support and expertise of our Technology Gateways and Technology Centres will help companies adapt, survive and, ultimately, thrive in the face of the current economic challenges.”
About the Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Programme
The Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Programme funds interactions between local and national industry and the Institutes of Technology and aims to increase collaboration and enterprise development at both a regional and national level.
The Technology Centres programme is a joint initiative between Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland and allows Irish companies and multinationals to work together on market focused strategic R&D projects in collaboration with research institutions.
The Capital Funding Programme provides industry with access to critical, leading-edge equipment and infrastructure which will help them to build resilience and to remain globally competitive, particularly in the face of challenges such as those posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The winners were selected through a rigorous evaluation process based on eligibility criteria for the call which included, but was not limited to, a strong track record of industry engagement, a significant industrial need for the new equipment, and space to service and maintain the equipment according to international standards.