CAPPA announce ‘Funding Innovation for SME Growth’ seminar

The Centre for Advanced Photonics and Process Analysis (CAPPA) in association with the Hincks Centre at Munster Technological University (MTU), would like to invite you to a free seminar focusing on funding & innovation for SME growth as well as how your business can benefit from innovation. This free virtual event will take place on Tuesday 9th of February 2021 from 11:00 – 12:30 via Microsoft Teams.

Do you want to learn about how to avail of funding, implement innovation and grow your business offering? Why not visit the CAPPA Funding Innovation for SME Growth event in association with the Hincks centre to learn about what funding you could avail of as well as how to integrate innovation into your business. This seminar will enable you to learn more about how your business can avail of the various funding incentives available as well as see examples of companies who have previously utilised this funding. If you are an industry professional and you are, looking to get a competitive advantage this event will be ideal for you.

CAPPA has helped start-ups, SME’s and multinational companies to avail of various government funding incentives for ideas they have enabling them to get valuable funding to progress their innovation idea. Some of the funding incentives that will be covered on the day will include the Innovation Voucher, Innovation Partnership, Agile Innovation Fund and the Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund.

The Hincks Centre is part of the School of Business at MTU. It was established in 2013 to support entrepreneurship in all its forms. It is a part of the strong entrepreneurship eco-system across the Institute. In establishing this centre, MTU is extending its long-standing, strong commitment to supporting the entrepreneurship drive at regional and national levels. The Centre intends to address a gap in Ireland’s current ability to train and provide support to all stakeholder groups who support and nurture entrepreneurship. It is Ireland’s first Centre of Entrepreneurship Excellence and is engaged in academic and policy focused research, education and training. The rapidly growing silver economy is an untapped market for businesses.   European Commission estimates the European silver economy is worth €3.7 trillion, and potential to grow to €5.7 trillion by 2025 while contributing 32% of GDP and supporting 38% employment. Through innovation, collaboration and supports, the silver economy has great potential for businesses.  The discussion will focus on the opportunities for businesses and the role of innovative teams.

At the seminar, you will hear examples of companies CAPPA has worked with and how innovation has transformed their business. These range in a variety of sectors including medical, pharmaceutical, photonics, consumer electronics, food and beverage. If you would like to find out more information about the event you can contact CAPPA directly by phone on 0851320676 or by emailing cappa@cit.ie.

You can register for this free event here.

SEAM acquire 3D metal printing system as part of DTIF funding initiative

SEAM has recently acquired a new 3D metal printing system as part of the government’s DTIF funding initiative. The EOS M100 is a highly specialised unit, which has a broad range of capabilities such as, the manufacture of high precision metallic parts from a wide range of materials such as titanium, magnesium alloys, platinum, gold and many others. As part of the DTIF project, it is being utilised for the development of Additively Manufactured biomedical implants with enhanced biocompatibility of for improved clinical outcomes. The beam quality and stable performance of the 200-watt fibre laser guarantee optimum, constant processing conditions for the production of high-quality components. This is a high-end system for the fast and efficient production of complex metal parts by means of additive manufacturing.

The new 3D metal printing system is ideal for the manufacture of open lattice structures for use in biomedical applications as well as bio-pharma applications. The system is ideally suited for applications such as dental crowns and bridges, as well as anti-scatter grids for medical devices. The M100 is used extensively to make crowns, bridges and other items out of cobalt-chrome alloy for dental restoration. The building volume and efficient recoating and exposure strategy ensures parts can be produced quickly and efficiently in small quantities. Furthermore, its small build volume allows the cost effective development of novel alloys for material development.

The ideal application of the printer is for when the manufacture of small metallic parts are required, especially in cases where plastic parts are not strong, durable or heat-resistant enough. Many industries that require small parts with tight tolerances can benefit from the system. The 200-watt laser has a focus spot of 40 microns and builds the object in precise 30-micron slices. Its cylindrical build chamber has a steel stage with a build volume 100 mm diameter and 94 mm high.

The surface of the M 100’s raw output is often too rough for immediate use. However, SEAM has extensive post-processing and heat-treatment capabilities to finish 3D printed parts, as well as techniques for part qualification. These include surface roughness measurement, mechanical testing and 3D metrological analysis for tolerance estimation. SEAM is available to consult on the printing of 3D metal parts as well as to assist in the design and development of components using its extensive CAD, stress analysis and fluid dynamics modelling capabilities. If larger parts are required for printing, SEAM has a range of printers for different materials and part sizes. SEAM is the one stop shop for all of your 3D metal printing needs and is here to ensure companies get the optimum results from any venture into this emerging technological revolution.

To find out more about SEAM Technology Gateway, check out their website or follow them on Twitter.

Source: – https://www.eos.info/en/additive-manufacturing/3d-printing-metal/eos-metal-systems/eos-m-100

 

 

Beyond IoT – VIRTUAL CONFERENCE 2021 The Digital Revolution

The successful, annual, Beyond IoT conference is back for its fourth consecutive year. On the 25th of January 2021, Beyond IoT 4.0 is going virtual with a, highly engaging, conference experience. The world has been forced to rapidly evolve and transform industry digital in order for businesses to survive. Beyond IoT 4.0 will be putting its focus on this digital revolution by bringing together, global thought leaders, industry and research experts and award-winning keynote speakers.

Entrepreneurs, SME’s, Start-Ups and Industry CO’s have the opportunity to engage with each other, network and collaborate on strategic concepts, emerging technology trends, deep technology insights and the various financial and developmental avenues to help the transition to digital be a seamless success.

The major topics for 2021 will be focusing on Big Data, Cybersecurity, Industry 4.0, Ethical Tech and The Digital Transformation to name but a few. This year’s incredible line-up of speakers includes Dr.Sally Eaves (Oxford University), Dr.Sandrine Crener (Harvard University), Lauren Knausenberger and Nicolas Chaillan (U.S Airforce, Civilian Tech Transfer), Prof. Sanjay Sarma (MIT) and Theo Priestley, Futurist and Technology Advisor. These global experts are joined on our virtual stages by industry experts Andrew Bickley (Arrow Electronics), Marie Fraiser (IBM) and author or “T Minus AI” Michael Kanaan. For a full list of the speakers and agenda check out the website listed below.

This year offers, attendees a refreshing approach to virtual conferencing with mixed reality elements, three stages covering Industry Europe, Industry Asia and Research ensuring more engagement than ever before. Guests can, once again, join workshops with global industry leaders Arrow Electronics and Microsoft for Start-ups along with Enterprise Ireland, Nimbus Research Centre, ICSATA and many more. Not to mention the chance to win several attractive prizes such as 3D printers, Azure software packages and much more to help you innovate in 2021. Beyond IoT 4.0 has also extended its offering to a limited podcast series in the run up to the conference day. The podcast series offers insights from exceptional industry leaders, highlighting the importance of Tech for Good and showcasing the incredible Irish Entrepreneurs who have harnessed it to solve problems in Society, The Environment and Healthcare.

For more information on the speakers, agenda, podcasts or to purchase attendee passes please go to:

www.beyondiot.ie

What is Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality?

Virtual Reality (VR) provides an virtual immersive environment detached from the real world around them. This allows objects in this environment to be simulated in a fabricated world. These headsets usually block off the view of the real world in a HMD (head mounted display) and can be standalone like the Oculus Quest 2 or tethered like the Valve Index headset. Science fiction provided us with a view of VR long before the technology was technologically feasible by showing us the Holodeck from Star Trek. Typically VR headset come with handheld controllers for interaction and can provide more tactile/haptic feedback to the end user.

Augmented reality (AR) provides an digital overlay to the real world to provide more contextual information to the user of the headset/device. This overlay provides additional information regarding the context of the environment. The user while in AR can visually see digital objects and text fields in their field of view. Some popular uses of AR today are used in hit games like Pokemon GO as well as furniture placement applications like IKEA’s virtual item visualiser. The major headset in the commercial space is the Hololens 2 of which we have several in our MRLAB. Additionally in the consumer space ARkit and ARCore are the leading technologies and we can offer several devices capable of running this technology from Samsung tablets to the latest Apple IPad pro variants containing the latest sensors for AR such as LIDAR.

Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) both refer to interactive digital experiences. In recent years, the costs of utilizing these technologies have come down considerably, in the case of the AR the consumer market has been quicker to adapt as most modern smartphones can run AR. This allows for low cost development of the AR technologies. This technology allows for the augmented data layer to display more, gives the user the ability to do more, and operate safely while seeing their environment and be more productive.

Whilst AR/VR have existed for several years dating back decades, the technology is now at a crucial adoption phase as the barriers to entry to the technology have significantly dropped. From a development point of view, the costs involved are dynamic, based on the size and scope of the project.

Stages of AR/VR

AR/VR development follow a familiar standard of software development with subtle differences.

1) Requirements

The requirements phase gathers all the necessary information for the project such as scoping, gathering of key early data, user requirements, system requirements, and more importantly for this type of development the necessity of it to be in either AR/VR or if relevant at all.

2) Design

The design phase involves the scoping of the software modules/platform as well as the design of the UI/UX which is a crucial to making a useful AR/VR application. The UI/UX can be tweaked and modified to the users liking in this phase as this will be the main method of interaction with the application and must suit the application parameters and functionality.

3) Implementation

Depending on the earlier steps the development can use several technologies in its implementation. For example if the application is a virtual reality application for training we would utilise the appropriate headset such as an all in one Oculus quest 2, the Oculus SDK, plugin libraries and the Unreal game engine.

4) Testing

Testing within AR/VR is very client focused as using a 3DUI/UX can be quite difficult for those unfamiliar and adoption of the design principles from the design phase is key in this section. Testing phase will eliminate any remaining bugs as well as help determine if the application meets the criteria set out in our requirements. Testing in AR/VR involves physical user testing with physical headsets.

FAQ’s

Can I get hurt in VR?

Nothing contained within the virtual world can hurt you, it is however important that you remain mindful of the real world environment you are in, as accidents can happen, and a user may bump into real world objects . The oculus quest does however have a system in place to prevent this from happening as it operates within a predefine boundary. The user will be alerted by the software if they move beyond the predefined area.

Does it cause motion sickness?

Virtual reality can cause motion sickness in some of its users however it is often person dependant. The developers have tried to circumvent this issue with the addition of teleportation as a means of movement, this method is known to reduce the likelihood of motion sickness. While VR may cause motion sickness in some, it is improving with each iteration of the technology.

Do I need a high-end PC to run it?

Yes and no, this will depend on what type hardware you use for the experience. Previous iterations of virtual reality hardware would require the use of a high-end PC but with the release of the oculus quest it has become less important as it can run in just the headset alone. For development and developers of VR applications it is desirable to have a high-end PC to meet all the demands of producing applications.

Is it just for games?

No. While most of the experiences offered to the public do come in entertainment form, it is becoming increasingly important in other areas such as virtual training and manufacturing. The possibilities of how virtual reality can be implemented has few boundaries.

Further information on TSSG available here

This article was first published on the TSSG website

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“Digitise or Die” – The Beyond IoT Podcast

Beyond IoT is back for its fourth consecutive year in January 2021. Like most conferences it has had to adapt to the constraints of a global pandemic and has decided to go virtual. Whilst the virtual experience is in itself exciting the biggest change to the Beyond IoT brand is the introduction of it’s very first podcast series.

Beyond IoT 4.0 is extending its offering to a limited podcast series that will launch two podcast episodes a week, in January, on the run up to the virtual conference on the 25th.

What began as a desire to offer more than just a conference, quickly evolved into a platform to showcase, in particular, start-ups and entrepreneurs working in the Tech for Good space. Each episode offers insights from exceptional women and men who saw a problem or identified a need in society that could be solved with a digital, tech innovation. This not only highlights the importance of Technology Research but also the necessity for mentor programmes such as “New Frontiers” National Programme for Developing Entrepreneurs and UCC’s “Ignite”. Not to mention the long list of funding grants from Enterprise Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland. to name but a few.

The podcast is hosted by Nimbus Research Centre’s marketing team Laura Blake and Emily Stickland, who, have only recently learnt to immerse themselves in the tech world. Having Laura and Emily navigate the digital revolution with their guests creates an atmosphere on the show of organic, honest, and for the most part hilarious conversation where guests and hosts alike learn from each other and at times surprise themselves on what they discover.

“The name ‘Digitise or Die’, stems from a Forbes quote stating that in 2021 40% of businesses that don’t adapt their offering online or transform their business practices digital, will fail”, says Emily. “It’s a provocative title aimed to evoke a sense of urgency for rapid transformation”.

Having the guests be primarily female was by accident rather than design however it does highlight, the real, growing female presence in the tech world as well as the entrepreneurial one. Laura adds “The Revolution of Females in Tech is so inspiring and when recording the podcasts we see the same themes come from each conversation, that women tend to be drawn to pragmatic problem solving of emotional based, social issues.”

That’s not to say the male guests haven’t been equally inspiring. The ‘Digitise or Die’ podcasts illustrate to anyone out there who has a business idea, to quite simply, take that idea seriously. Each guest identifies all the help that is out there and readily available but most importantly discusses the real challenges with running a start-up and the opportunities out there to overcome them.

In terms of Digitisation, technology is not something that is here to replace humans, it is a tool for society and industry to utilise to enhance and transform day to day life. The podcast guests have each done this and have proved that digitalisation is the future and absolutely anyone is capable of it.

The podcast will start being aired on the 4th of January 2021. For more information on the podcasts go to: https://beyondiot.ie/ or check out the Beyond IoT social platforms on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Technology Insights – Immersing into AR/VR

‘Technology Insights’ brings together a range of relevant and exciting industry topics highlighting current, new and emerging technologies in sectors such as MedTech, Software, Biotechnology, Food and Manufacturing. The series aims to provide Irish industry with a platform for interesting and engaging discussion on a wide range of current and future technologies, presented by industry experts within the Technology Gateway Network.

The second webinar in the series takes place on Thursday 28th January 2021 and explores the world of AR/VR. Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality technologies are achieving mass adoption in numerous sectors including education, manufacturing and gaming. VR creates an environment that immerses the user in a virtual world which suspends belief. AR is similar but uses holograms which are overlaid on the user’s real environment and enhances or adds to what they can see via data displays or 3D models.

Presented by Stephen Barnes, Research Software Developer at TSSG Technology Gateway, ‘Immersing into AR/VR’ will investigate how these technologies produce new immersive interaction paradigms that not only transforms how we consume information but also the speed of how we comprehend that information.

Stephen Barnes

Stephen is an Experienced Research Software Engineer in the MR team of the Mobile Ecosystems and Pervasive Sensing Research Group at TSSG. He has worked on a number of Extended Reality projects since 2016 in areas such as AEC, education, training and virtual heritage. Stephen also has research interests in the use of Extended Reality as an assistive technology for people with neurodevelopmental disorders.

TSSG Technology Gateway

The TSSG (Telecommunications Software & Systems Group) Technology Gateway, based in Waterford Institute of Technology, is a research and innovation centre for industry to access cutting-edge knowledge and solutions in advanced mobiles services and software service enablers. The Gateway develops technology to bring a business idea to reality. As part of the Technology Gateway Network funded by Enterprise Ireland, it is the commercial interface of TSSG. As an advanced software R&D Centre with particular expertise in all aspects of mobile networks and communications platforms and services, their role is to deliver technology solutions through collaboration on projects which are close to the market needs of the Irish industry.

Event details

Date: Thursday 28th January 2020

Time: 11.00 – 11.45am

For further details and registration please see here

5 ways to benefit from the experience and expertise of EMD Ireland  

The creation of three Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Clusters have generated an innovative ecosystem which offers solution-based RD&I opportunities for Irish companies. Each cluster provides research and development expertise to industry, of all sizes and sectors. The EMD Ireland cluster, specialising in Engineering, Materials and Design consists of six Technology Gateways offering expert technical advice in areas such as precision engineering, polymers, protective coatings, prototype design, medical imaging technologies and 3D medal additive manufacturing.  

Companies who choose to collaborate with the cluster can avail of the considerable interconnected resources available within the member Gateways, achieving a cohesive and timely approach to innovation 

EMD Ireland’s extensive experience in delivery of near-to-market solutions, not only provide an array of benefits to companies in the journey of product to market, but over time can often result in the cluster become an important extension of a company’s R&D capability.  

Working with the cluster opens up many areas of opportunity for Irish Business. Discover below some of the benefits available when you choose to work with EMD Ireland  

Dedicated Gateway team  

Our dedicated team of regional Gateway Managers and Business Development researchers and engineers are just one of the many reason’s companies choose to work with us. With skills, knowledge and expertise in a range of sectors the EMD Ireland team strive to provide Irish business with the necessary aids and supports required to drive the development of RD&I throughout Ireland.  

Abundance of expert advice and knowledge 

The cluster environment, by its very nature, creates an abundance of expertise and knowledge. Making it the ideal environment for the development of innovative thinking and transferable skills. Working in areas such as manufacturing, engineering, 3D Printing, prototyping, MedTech, design and materials, knowledge sharing is part and parcel of the cluster’s approach.  

Flexible in approach  

Frequent contact and extensive collaboration between our Gateway teams allow for a more flexible approach when delivering projects which may be dependent on several stakeholders. This type of agility is fundamental when working in a clustered environment, pushing the project forward without delay. As part of the wider Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Network, flexibility, cooperation and coordination is inbuilt in their DNA.  

Specialised equipment  

Access to specialised equipment can often be a significant stumbling block to many companies. EMD Ireland’s access to a wide range of equipment situated within Institutes of Technology and Technological Universities around the country, ensures your specific requirements can be met. Below is a small sample of equipment available within the cluster. More details on available equipment can be found on individual Gateway websites 

  • APT: High Temperature Gel Permeation Chromatography (HT-GPC) system  
  • CREST: Nanoscratch tester with Optical Profilometer  
  • DESIGN+: Projet MJP 5600Large format multi material 3D printer 
  • MET: Philips Azurion 7 M20 Digital Fluoroscope 
  • PEM: High-capacity universal tensile testing machine  
  • SEAM: EOS M100 – 3D metal printing system 

Project continuity  

Working within the cluster means that, should your project require expertise from multiple gateways, this transition will be managed inhouse by your lead Gateway Manager. This level of continuity helps to create efficiencies in the process as well as adherence to budgetary and timeline projections   

For more information on the EMD Ireland Cluster check out their webpage or follow on Twitter. 

Profile: TSSG Technology Gateway

The TSSG (Telecommunications Software & Systems Group) Technology Gateway, based in Waterford Institute of Technology, is a research and innovation centre for industry to access cutting-edge knowledge and solutions in advanced mobiles services and software service enablers. 

What is the TSSG Technology Gateway? 

TSSG Gateway develops technology to bring a business idea to reality. As part of the Technology Gateway Network funded by Enterprise Ireland, it is the commercial interface of TSSG. As an advanced software R&D Centre with particular expertise in all aspects of mobile networks and communications platforms and services, their role is to deliver software technology solutions through collaboration on projects which are close to the market needs of the Irish industry. 

 What expertise is available at TSSG? 

TSSG has expertise in the following areas, Distributed & cloud-based mobile services, Next generation IP based voice and video, Virtual and augmented reality services, Location, Context, Smart space and social service enablers, Data science and mining.  They can assist with the development of technological solutions applicable to all types of products and services, offering expertise throughout the entire lifecycle of the development process. Research is what defines them. Whether you are seeking individual support or want to work with multiple partners, TSSG can help accelerate the progress of your product. 

What type of companies do TSSG collaborate with? 

Over the past five years TSSG have completed projects with all types of Irish based companies, from micro SME’s to scaling SME’s and many multinationals such as IBM and Cisco. TSSG actively seeks and encourages collaboration between researchers and external business partners. Realising the commercial potential of research outputs requires the specialist marketing and product development skills of entrepreneurs and industry business development experts. 

 What facilities and technologies are available? 

TSSG can help you develop new advanced mobile platforms, mobile services and mobile software enablers. Their team will assist to analyse needs, to design, develop and launch a mobile strategy, from concept to production, using HTML5 and native applications on mobile and tablet devices that will deliver clear advantages over your competitors. Collaborating with TSSG will allow your company to build beyond simple mobile applications to create multi-tiered systems allowing you to provide a variety of new services or products to your clients. 

 What services are available at TSSG? 

TSSG delivers innovative ICT solutions to its clients across multiple industries, including Agritech, HealthTech, Smart Cities, Communications and Energy Sectors. Transforming how companies operate and compete through scientifically proven R&D knowledge and expertise which has a direct impact on improving a  clients’ bottom line. 

Every company must innovate to survive. If you do not have a Research, Development and Innovation (RD&I) focus TSSG can help you create that focus. If you have an established RD&I function, create an extension of this function with TSSG and they will help you push the boundaries to ensure you stay ahead of the competition and disrupt the marketplace. 

The TSSG have engineers and business development executives that can carry out an Innovation Sprint Service, which will bring people from Idea to ICT Prototype in 2 weeks. The gateway will carry out professional software engineering services, looking at ICT Product Architecture and Roadmapping and offer a service in digital creative design where the ICT user experience and user design are to the fore. 

The TSSG Research Supports are specialised groups with a strategic research focus. 

  • Creative Design Unit: Advocates & practitioners of design-led innovation, the Creative Design Unit help create unique products that disrupt the market instead of adapting to it. The team’s expertise combines artistic ability with technical proficiency to design and create new technologies across both research and industry sectors. 
  • Professional Software Engineering Services: PSES is a team of highly talented Dev-Ops, Software Testers and Software Engineers with a cumulative experience of over 30 years, spanning a broad range of technology and business domains including Mobile, Telecoms, Big Data, eHealth, Autonomics and Network Management 

 TSSG Key Research Areas. 

  • Emerging Networks Lab: The Emerging Networks Laboratory (ENL), is a TSSG Research Unit comprising 19 researchers focussing on challenges relating to the evolution of the communications networking and service technologies that will see widespread deployment in the next 10 years. 
  • Programmable and autonomous Systems: The Programmable & Autonomous Systems Unit seeks to research, develop and commercialise techniques, tools and algorithms that will ensure that citizens can benefit from the  new digitally connected world. 
  • Mobile Ecosystem & Pervasive Sensing: The MEPS Lab at TSSG spearhead research in areas such as Biomedical Nano and Molecular Communications, Pervasive Sensing, Embedded  Systems  Control and Interactive  Technologies (Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality). 
  • Infrastructure Group: The Infrastructure Group plays a cross-cutting organisation role in not only pursuing research in its own thematic areas (see below), but by actively engaging in the research and development of facilities, lab spaces, testbeds, other bespoke ICT systems, and providing access to, or generating, data-sets. 

To find out more about TSSG Technology Gateway, check out their website or follow them on Twitter.

 

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State-of-the-Art Mixed Reality Innovation Lab now available to companies in the South East

Companies and individuals who need to run simulations or test prototypes now have access to a state-of-the-art, €160,000  mixed reality testbed lab and research team at Waterford Institute of Technology’s West Campus.

Available for free to qualifying projects through the Technology Gateway, the lab is now open and accessible for companies and access to the Telecommunications Software and Systems Group (TSSG) campus will be in line with COVID-19 regulations.

The new facility allows clients see how mixed reality can transform education, training and awareness and monitor movement, immersion and interaction through a variety of technologies, including wireless headsets, a VR treadmill, 360-degree video capture, live performance and acoustic capture, physiological sensing and eye tracking equipment and so much more.

Funding for the landmark testbed facility was secured through the Enterprise Ireland Institutes of Technology Capital Call 2019 and although remote working has limited access to the equipment for the Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality (ARVR) team, Frances Cleary, Research Unit Manager in TSSG, said it’s now open and available for use:

“Mixed reality innovations need to be experienced by clients and interested stakeholders in order to fully understand and appreciate the potential it can bring to a company. The mixed reality innovation lab allows organisations to immerse themselves in virtual or augmented experiences providing the opportunity to develop an impactful research and development strategy for a particular product or service. This helps a company plan for a market impact at an earlier date, therefore increasing their chances of success of getting to the market in order to generate revenue.”

The team can be contacted on techgateway@tssg.org for more information and an appointment.

The Mixed Reality Innovation Lab at TSSG has a dedicated space located in Arclabs Research and Innovation Centre and also includes a portable element that can be brought to a client’s premises.

Kevin Doolin, Director of Innovation at TSSG said: “TSSG have been working in the Mixed Reality sector for a number of years and this lab allows the team to advance their research capabilities to showcase and enhance our developed applications and to support the visualisation and demonstration aspects of this technology to our industry partners in multiple sectors such as Health, Education and Pharma.”

Speaking about the importance of mixed reality technologies in industry, Miguel Ponce de Leon, TSSG Technology Gateway Manager said: “The applications of mixed reality technologies are endless. The nature of mixed reality lends itself well to a whole host of experiences as it offers a combination of movement, immersion and interaction. The experience and capabilities that it provides has many applications outside of its presumed entertainment value.

“We have seen an increase in mixed reality solutions being applied to industry since people are working remotely and the demand for online shopping has increased. Companies are using AR to allow their customers visualise a product in their home and others have applied VR to remote training programmes. We are very excited to see what the future holds for the mixed reality sector” he continued.

The Mixed Reality Innovation Lab provides four key components to industry:

  • A dedicated multi-user Mixed reality (MR) environment utilising the latest in wireless transmitted desktop grade and all in one VR experiences, enterprise grade AR as well offering consumer level alternatives featuring depth and Lidar technologies. Local and remote GPU processing for digital photogrammetry, digital twin and high intensity AR/VR applications.
  • A dedicated multi-user Augmented Reality (AR) environment with high-fidelity, full environment scanning (360-degree video capture, live performance capture, and acoustic capture), and visualisation capabilities.
  • Human-centric monitoring to study the impact of AR and VR environments on an individual. This includes a high-precision EEG headset, haptic devices for physiological sensing and eye tracking equipment.
  • Portable and mobile equipment that can extend the AR and VR environments beyond their dedicated lab spaces and push the current boundaries into multi-room and very large spaces, and outdoor spaces using a mix of traditional sensors, body sensors, visual odometry, drone-based 3D scanning and kinematic tracking.

Further information on TSSG available here

This article was first published on the TSSG website

Image: Ian Mills, Tech Lead, TSSG ARVR team

Benefits of an Enterprise Ireland Innovation Voucher

The Innovation Voucher Programme was developed by Enterprise Ireland to build and develop links between Ireland’s public knowledge providers (i.e. higher education institutes, public research bodies) and Irish business. Creating an environment of research and innovation for companies and projects of all shapes and sizes. Since its introduction, businesses all across Ireland have ulitised the Innovation Voucher Programme to assist with an innovation problem or solution. Engaging in this way provides an array of benefits to many small Irish businesses, supplying them with the expertise, knowledge and guidance to meet their innovation needs. If you’re thinking about innovation or simply want to find out more about the programme, we’ve put together some of the many benefits available when accessing an Innovation Voucher   

Explore a business opportunity or problem 

The Enterprise Ireland Innovation Voucher Programme is an ideal opportunity for companies who may want to explore an Innovation problem or opportunity. The scheme is open to all small and medium-sized limited companies registered with the CRO in Ireland. Successful applications are provided with a €5000 Innovation Voucher to use in collaboration with a specialised knowledge provider. The voucher can be used for innovation such as: 

  • new product/process development; 
  • new business model development; 
  • new service delivery and customer interface; 
  • new service development; 
  • tailored training in innovation management; 
  • innovation/technology audit. 

For full information on programme details and application criteria check out the Enterprise Ireland website

Access to a range of knowledge providers across Ireland 

The Innovation Voucher programme provides access to a wide range of knowledge providers across the country. The voucher can be exchanged with your chosen provider for knowledge, advice and expertise. You can view the full listing here. Knowledge Providers are publicly funded research organisations such as Universities, Institutes of Technology, Technological Universities and other state research organisations.  

Easy process from application to project finish 

Applying for an Innovation Voucher couldn’t be easier! The programme runs on an open call, which means applications can currently be made all year round. Companies can apply via the Enterprise Ireland online application system. Your application will be assessed and a decision made. The voucher is then used to obtain the necessary advice and expertise 

Talking in advance to your chosen knowledge provider is always best, as it helps to provide clarity around project expectations and timelines. But don’t worry if you’re unsure about the most suitable provider for you, you can always apply and decide later.  

If you are thinking about collaborating with a Technology Gateway, but are unsure on suitability, you can contact the support office or your regional Gateway centre. Our Technology Gateway managers will bring you through the application process, criteria and suitability. They can even help with the voucher application process itself.  We view each project as unique and as a result the assistance we provide is tailored to its specific needs. Our specialist Gateway teams ensure that projects are delivered on time and within budget and provide a wide variety of support and assistance throughout the process 

Avail of up to three vouchers 

There are two types of vouchers available under the programme, the fully funded €5,000 Standard voucher and the Co-funded €5,000 fast track voucher.  A company can apply for a maximum of three Innovation Vouchers, one of which must be a co-funded Fast Track voucher. It’s important to point out that a company may only have one ‘active’ voucher at any point in time. Each voucher is valid for 12 months from issue. You can view further information about each voucher type here. 

De-risk the project  

We understand that innovation can be a daunting thought. For many small businesses who may not have the time, expertise, funding or equipment to engage in the process, the programme can often de-risk the project for the company, by engaging a wider knowledge base that is committed to providing the best possible support and expertise for your project.  

Proof of Concept / Prototype  

Innovation Vouchers can be utilised in instances where a new product is being investigated and can include the development of a low-fidelity prototype which can demonstrate the proof of concept and aid in the raising of funding required to take the product through to commercialisation. 

Project Feasibility 

For projects that are in the very early stages of development (concept / idea stage), Innovation Vouchers are a great way to fund the initial research around the feasibility of the project prior to the development of a technology roadmap and detailed plan for progressing the project to the next steps. This process can sometimes highlight the need for a different approach than originally thought, in order for the project to reach a more successful outcome. 

Introduction to wider RD&I industry offerings  

For many companies the Innovation Voucher Programme will be their first contact with a knowledge provider. This interaction will often progress to a greater understanding of the availability of supports and expertise within the wider RD&I community. We often find that the Innovation Voucher Programme can become the catalysis for further company research and development, with the Gateway Network often becoming an extension of the companies RD&I capabilities.  

 

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