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Nimbus Launch Webinar Series to Assist Business Community

The Covid 19 outbreak has caused businesses across the globe to rethink their business model. We have seen how Irish businesses have responded to increasing challenges such as working remotely, moving operations online and diversifying how they deliver their products and services. At the Nimbus Research Centre we are fortunate that we can continue to operate with little disruption in how we deliver our projects to clients. Naturally there has been some change in how we do this with a significant increase in video calls, online workshops and digital marketing efforts.

Many businesses may have had to furlough staff, close up shop and rely on savings to ride out the storm, this could however put a business at risk if the spread of the virus cannot be contained in the coming months. Moreover, many businesses could see themselves leapfrogged by innovative competitors. To assist companies throughout this difficult and challenging period, Nimbus and Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateways continue to provide innovation and business supports through a range of different measures.

One way we are doing this is ensuring we communicate with our clients effectively, and we have found this is best done through our Webinar Series which launched on the 6th of May. Currently, more than 60% of organisations are using webinars as part of their content marketing strategies. Webinars have exploded in growth over the past few months.

The first in our series focused in on how Nimbus is continuing “business as usual” even through remote work. Our panellist from the Nimbus Business Development Team, Brain Cahill, Stephen Collins and Alex Joyce highlighted, Enterprise Ireland and other government funding supports, that are available to companies during this time and how these supports can be used within Nimbus to develop and innovate organisations to survive and flourish during this unusual time.

The webinar also placed emphasis on previous and on-going projects that we have developed within the centre. We have focused experts in software, hardware, UI/UX and Machine Learning & AI who work on over seventy projects a year. These projects assisted companies with integrating IoT technologies into their business without a need of prior understanding.

Upcoming webinars will include introducing our Mixed Reality Lab which consists of the latest Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies to support and grow our innovation capacity to service the needs of Industry 4.0 client requirements. We will also conduct webinars for specific sectors such as the Food and Hospitality industry, who may need technical support and innovative solutions as they move their offerings online.

For more information how the Nimbus Technology Gateway can help your business please visit nimbus.cit.ie or contact brian.cahill@nimbus.ie.

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PEM Support Businesses Online with Consultations and Facilitated Innovation / Planning Sessions

The Precision Engineering and Manufacturing (PEM) Technology Gateway offers supports to Irish companies through various funding and applied research projects.

We are also available to help our existing and potential new clients to restart their businesses and get to the next stage post Covid-19. PEM can offer facilitated innovation sessions on business’s long-term planning, innovation planning, guidance on your development journey and to facilitate you in your marketing strategy.

If you are a Company having technical, engineering, manufacturing, materials, process optimisation problems you are trying to solve, then we are here to support your work on those projects through accessing the extensive expertise within the PEM Technology Gateway.

We provide a bridge between industry and IT Sligo, enabling access to the right academic expertise and equipment, we can provide testing facilities you may need and support you in your product/process innovation projects. We also assist in navigating potential funding sources available through the Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway – our website gives more detail on how we can benefit your businesses.

More about us:

The aim of the PEM Centre is twofold:

  • To service the needs of industry – working with companies to provide solutions to engineering and technical problems across their value chain.
  • To contribute to the technical and academic body of knowledge within Precision Engineering & Manufacturing, and to transfer that knowledge to Industry.

The PEM Technology Gateway.

Building on the Institute of Technology Sligo’s research strengths in precision engineering, mechanical engineering, material science, micro-machining, polymer processing, rapid prototyping, general manufacturing process control and statistical process analysis, we provide engineering/technical solutions and process improvements across the full product lifecycle, with particular specialisation in Product design & development and Manufacturing

PEM strategic Research Centre

The PEM SRC structure provides our Principal Investigators, who have all individually demonstrated notable research achievements through engagement with industry, a platform to consolidate our experience, expertise, and resources. The PEM Research Development and Innovation themes are complementary and provide opportunities for convergence towards a unique single industry R&D support offering in precision engineering and manufacturing. In addition they complement and leverage of a number of Enterprise Ireland  and SFI funded research centres that we have formed strategic collaborations with.

Contact us to find out more about how we in PEM can help you with your business’s long-term planning in research, development & innovation, guidance on your development journey and developing your marketing strategy. Our Business Development team, R&D Engineers and Researchers are here to help you, we can provide online consultations to discuss your areas of need and facilitate group workshops to help with planning the next steps of your innovation journey or projects.

The Team

For more information or for support in your funding application contact any of the PEM Technology Gateway team below.

 

Finola Howe
PEM Technology Gateway Manager
Area of Expertise: Business Development, Quality,
Manufacturing & Operational Excellence
Email: howe.finola@itsligo.ie

 

Clíodhna Carroll
PEM Technology Gateway
Business Development Lead
Email: carroll.cliodhna@itsligo.ie

 

 

Mark McLoughlin
PEM Technology Gateway Research
& Development Engineer
Area of Expertise: Precision Engineering & Design
Email:  mcloughlin.mark@itsligo.ie

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CAPPA Assisting with Defining NSAI Standards for Barrier Masks

CAPPA Technology Gateway are delighted to announce that Researcher Dr Steven Darby was recently part of the team, which worked to define The National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) standards for barrier masks. The NSAI standard for barrier masks was recently published and provides important information for manufacturers and consumers in relation to barrier masks. The specification was developed in response to a request from the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission and with the view that many Irish manufacturing companies are trying to change their production lines in response to the current pandemic.

The NSAI developed this Specification Written in Fast Track (SWiFT) to address an urgent need for a consensus – based specification for non – medical and non – PPE masks (barrier masks) for the general public. Used in conjunction with relevant public health advice, these barrier masks may contribute to the prevention of the spreading viral (e.g. COVID – 19) infections. This work had to be completed within a very tight timeline due to the urgency of the project. This specification was developed using existing specifications from NSAI colleagues in France, Belgium and Spain.

Cork Institute of Technology staff, Dr Steven Darby, (CAPPA) Dr Niall Smith (Head of Research, CIT), Professor Roy Sleator, Alan Giltinan, CIT Blackrock Castle Observatory, along with contributed as experts in the development of the document. Commenting on the publication, Dr Niall Smith said: “It is gratifying to see members of the CIT research community playing a thought-leading role during the Covid-19 emergency. Further developments in the manufacture and use of masks can be anticipated as we gain a better understanding of the transmission pathways for the virus.”

CAPPA is committed to providing its facilities and expertise in every possible aspect to help with the fight against COVID – 19. Even though we are restricted with what we can do, we are still available to speak with you regarding research projects, proposals and product solutions. If you wish to speak with a member of the team contact them here or email cappa@cit.ie.

This post was originally published on the CAPPA website

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Proactive Response by SEAM & 3DWIT to Current Global Public Health Crisis

SEAM & 3DWIT delivering 3D printed face shields to National Ambulance Service (Dublin)

SEAM Technology Gateway have responded to the current global public health crisis by offering their unique skills and experience to companies and those working on the front line. From its Waterford IT base, SEAM provides engineering material solutions in sectors such as biomedical devices, pharmaceuticals, micro-electronics, precision engineering & construction sectors. In recent weeks it has come together with its Additive Manufacturing training centre 3DWIT to provide a range of services to those who need it most.

True to its dedicated commitment of providing continued service to industries, SEAM laboratories has remained open throughout the lock down period,  with its team of researchers and engineers providing vital assistance, support and expertise to companies in the Medical Device and Pharma industry who may require assistance at this time. Whilst the team at 3DWIT have developed a supply line of much needed face shields, necessary to protect our frontline workers. To date SEAM-3DWIT have printed numerous face shields and have delivered to National Ambulance Service in Dublin, various nursing homes and health centres in Waterford and its surroundings, GP surgeries, UHW (University Hospital Waterford) consultants, etc.

SEAM & 3DWIT delivering 3D printed face shields to Nursing homes, health centres & clinicians in Waterford

Focus has now been turned into design & mass producing of HME (Humidity Moisture Exchanger) integrated full face mask for consultants who deal with Covid patients and also for other frontline medical staff.  A consortium headed by SEAM and comprising UHW consultants and few companies are looking to mass produce this face mask locally.

On the importance of providing vital services to the medical and pharma industry as well as those working on the frontline, Technology Gateway Manager Dr. Ramesh Raghavendra said ‘it has been very gratifying to be able to assist who needed most during these unprecedented pandemic times and I am grateful to my staff for their assistance and commitment’.

To find out more about SEAM Technology Gateway check out their website and follow them on Twitter for all the latest news.

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IMaR Technology Gateway Offer Technology Advice to Keep Your Business Trading

Kerry businesses struggling to adapt to the challenges presented by Covid-19 can now avail of free technology consultations from the IMaR Technology Gateway at IT Tralee.

With shutdowns and social distancing with us for the foreseeable future, many businesses are looking at ways to continue operating while adhering to HSE guidelines. New technology may be the answer; but the question is, where to start?

For over 10 years, the IMaR Research Centre at IT Tralee has been working for companies in the areas of software, electronics, computing platforms, artificial intelligence, sensors and control systems, and the Technology Gateway’s role is to make these skills accessible to business and companies.

IMaR are now offering 30 minute technology consultation sessions free to Tralee and Kerry businesses to go through the issues they may be having and help them find possible solutions. This could include expert advice on platforms to assist with online trading options, remote working, new ways of delivering training or expert content to customers, technology to remotely monitor facilities, control machines  or achieve more with contactless interactions – not only payments, but door opening, machine on/off, data entry, personnel IDs and much more.

IMaR can also help with advice on the state funding and grants available to businesses to bring in new technologies or to develop their own new technology products.

Dr Daniel Riordan of IMaR says, “Many businesses have already been in contact about what technology they could bring in to address problems they are having with remote working, engaging with clients online or adhering to HSE social distancing guidelines while continuing to do business. Some we have been able to help by pointing them to the correct off-the-shelf technology or web-service, others have been advised on what technology or software is needed as a solution for their business and directed towards a suitable provider or consultant and others have engaged with us in the research and development of new products and services better suited to the current business climate.”

Book your free session with the IMaR Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway team by emailing imar@ittralee.ie

For further information on IMaR check out their website or follow them on Twitter or LinkedIn

 

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Design+: Break from the Norm with innovative e-workshop to support Irish business

The view out the window may have changed but the work carries on! At Design+ we have transformed our  Innovation Toolkit and process to MIRO digital whiteboards. This, combined with live video workshops conducted through MS Teams, enables us to support companies seeking innovation, developing innovation processes or re strategizing during and post Covid-19, all while maintaining our trademark client interaction

Many companies are facing the challenges of cash-flow, distribution, communication difficulties and loss of traditional sales channels through retail etc. However, many are also identifying opportunities such as online sales development, increase in local supply demand, increase in food awareness and local produce, opportunities to diversify to new products or new markets. The design strategy workshops are aimed at supporting companies to re-strategise and frame the challenges and opportunities pertinent to their business.

We have designed the digital workshop to work remotely with a lead strategist engaged with the client face to face through live video whilst a second strategist works on the digital whiteboard to capture the key information and visually map the connections. This can also be delivered via our design studio with cameras and sound equipment and the client remotely linked on live video. The live video and visual mapping being shared on the whiteboard brings a dynamic to the workshops and ensures they are totally bespoke to the company’s needs.

On working with Design+ through the new workshops, Eric McGuire,  McGuire Diamonds, Gorey says

“I have worked with Lynne and the design strategy team through the digital workshops and it was fantastic. I received a link through email and once I clicked it I was in the workshop with a video link to the team.  I was able to have real conversations face to face whilst all the information was being mapped on to a whiteboard with sketching and post it notes and text.  It really made me look at things differently and step outside of the day to day, this is all about the bigger picture but then about making those ideas real and actionable. This is just the kind of support I need at the moment as the business is definitely changing and this process has brought clarity and direction”

Whilst Kylie Magner, Magners Farm, Tipperary said

“The digital workshop strategy has been brilliant so far for our business. It’s great to formalise thought processes, collate ideas and at the end of the workshop see those ideas and processes laid out in a logical and strategic manner. Really looking forward to the next one!”

The design strategy process uses tools from the designer’s toolkit to assist in generating new ideas, evaluate ideas and develop strategic roadmap to steps of implementation. The focus is on live projects with known and unknown needs and is open to all SME’s.

To find out more on how DESIGN+ can help your business, check out their website and follow them on Twitter for all the latest news.

 

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APT collaborate with DG Systems & Total Plastic Solutions in COVID-19 fight.

APT Technology Gateway (Applied Polymer Technologies) are delighted to facilitate the donation of our DG Systems supplied ZHAFIR ZERES Haitain Injection Moulding machine to Total Plastic Solutions who will mass produce front line healthcare staff face visors which the company have named “The Limerick Visor”.

In discussing the industry collaboration:

Sam Foley, Total Plastic Solutions said  “The initial prototypes were 3D printed items but as expediency was key to the struggle we (Abbey Moulding Contractors Ltd and Total Plastic Solution Ltd) dedicated our team to design and build an injection moulding tool to enable production volumes of the visors to be produced at our site in Dromcollogher, Co.Limerick. The process from concept through tool design and build to producing high volumes took 10 days. I would like to thank Danny Gleeson and the staff of DG Systems and APT for providing the moulding machine and associated equipment on short notice. I would also like to thank Liam Quaid of Weener Plastics Limited who assisted to fast track a visor solution for our front line heroes.”

Danny Gleeson said ” DG Systems is delighted to support this vital initiative by providing the necessary moulding and ancillary equipment to progress this project to fruition. Protecting frontline workers in these extraordinary times is paramount and we are more than happy to play our part”.

APT Technology Gateway Manager Noel Gately stated ‘Polymer engineering is a key component in the design and manufacture of many of the critical devices needed in the fight against Covid-19. AIT & APT continues to support the industry during this period with the supply of services and manufacturing equipment as requested.’

 

Image above: The Limerick Visor

APT is a dedicated resource for the Irish polymer manufacturing industry and regularly provides training and information dissemination, as well as production demonstration days for companies. Using its suite of characterisation equipment and pilot polymer processing facilities, APT can cover all areas of the production lifecycle from concept design and prototype development towards commercial launch of a development product, production optimisation and troubleshooting for existing processes and end of life recycling.

DG systems supply a large range of plastics processing and ancillary equipment including, Injection Moulding Machines, Loading, Drying, Granulation, Blending & Dosing, Bulk Storage Systems, Temperature Control, Cooling, Plant Supervision, Process & Production Monitoring

Total Plastic Solutions – For over 20 years TPS have been a trusted partner to our multi-national customer base. A solid reputation built on high performance through the utilisation of our service offering of Design, Manufacture and validation of custom, precision, injection moulded components. Our customers benefit from our end-to-end customised manufacturing options, en-corporating full contract manufacturing solutions and supply chain services.

 

                    

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MET & GMIT provide a vital community response to Covid-19 outbreak

Work has been ongoing in GMIT and MET Technology Gateway (Medical and Engineering Technologies) to provide a vital response to the outbreak of Covid-19 in Ireland. Institute staff has been working around the clock to provide resources, assistance and much needed PPE to those providing essential services on the frontline, both within their local community and further afield.

With the global shortage of PPE, MET and GMIT have been working to provide a supply line of face shields to those front line workers. A team of five MET researchers, headed up by Dr Patrick Delassus, Academic Director at MET, are 3D printing face shields from an open source design. Production has now been ramped up with over 50 shields produced daily. MET Staff are making daily deliveries to local and rural Nursing Homes, providing a valuable resource to those who need them most.

  

The provision of ventilators to treat Covid-19 patients has been an ongoing issue for many hospitals. To support this need MET Technology Gateway has loaned its respiratory ventilator to University Hospital Galway (UHG). The ventilator, normally used for research and development purposes, will now provide a crucial additional resource to UHG in the vital treatment of patients. In addition to the above responses, a number of MET staff are also involved in contact tracing.

MET Technology Gateway will continue to provide these valuable services to the community throughout this period. Sharon White, MET Technology Gateway Manager says “The response to COVID-19 requires a national effort; we are all in this together. The response to the initiative has been fantastic, with members of the public loaning us their 3D printers to help increase production. MET is dedicated to supporting our front line staff in any way that we can”.

The Covid-19 response from GMIT is currently ongoing, teams of staff, academics and researchers are continuing to provide a range of services, assistance and support to their community in this unprecedented time. More information on the GMIT Covid-19 response can be found here

For more information on MET services and expertise check out their website and follow them on Twitter and Linkedin

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AIT & APT Technology Gateway provide expertise for Covid-19 Response

Athlone Institute of Technology are among many Institutes and Universities nationwide who are providing their expertise, knowledge and experience in the global fight against Covid-19. This vital support and assistance of academics, researchers and engineers throughout the institute is a vital cog in this islands fight against the spread of this pandemic. Work in this area has been ongoing since Covid-19 reached our shores with various teams and departments engaged in a range of responses within R&D and the wider business community. Some of which are outlined below:

  • The CISD department and Technology Gateway APT (Applied Polymer Technology) are continuing to provide essential services in analytical testing and processing to companies who are working to produce PPE, ventilators and other medical device equipment.
  • Researchers and clinicians from Athlone Institute of Technology and NUI Galway are working on developing eco-sustainable solutions for PPE. A rapid response team consisting of academics, researchers, clinicians and scientists from across both institutions are tasked with investigating the deployment of high throughput pulsed UV light for the purpose of reprocessing of personal and protective equipment. The APT team involved in this response is led by Technology Gateway Manager Noel Gately. You can read more on this work here.
  • The team at APT was able to use its substantial network of suppliers when the HSE made a direct request for the manufacturer of swabs, a potential match was identified through their connections. APT also sourced a supplier of polymer sheets to manufacture the swabs.
  • The APT team have also collaborated with a Medical Device company on potential suppliers for face shield material, including consultation on the design of an injection moulding machine for the production of respirators. The design team continue to support this response and are ready to offer other means of support if necessary.
  • APT worked as consultants on a task force deployed by the IDA on the manufacturing of Individual patient hoods, their work included identifying sources of RF welding and consulting on mould design for parts of a personalised hood manufacture.

Researchers and Engineers at Athlone Institute of Technology, CISD and APT are continuing to engage with and support companies who request assistance throughout this period.

APT Technology Gateway Manager Noel Gately stated ‘Polymer engineering is a key component in the design and manufacture of many of the critical devices needed in the fight against Covid-19. AIT & APT continues to support the industry during this period with the supply of services and manufacturing equipment as requested.’

Further information on APT services and contact details are available here.

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CAPPA Technology Gateway offers free online consultations

The current COVID-19 pandemic has seen the business community suffer unique and disruptive challenges causing much instability and uncertainty for the future. To counter this and provide additional support, the Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateways Network has remained open, with our teams working remotely, to provide assistance to our client companies.

CAPPA Technology Gateway, based in Cork Institute of Technology is one such example. The team delivers photonic solutions for industry in the Pharmaceutical, Food & Beverage and Medical Device sectors and are currently communicating with new and existing clients through email, phone and teleconferencing.

In these unprecedented times, the ability to provide support to the business community is extremely important to the Network. Liam Lewis, CAPPA Technology Gateway Manager says ‘CAPPA are delighted to be able to assist our industry partners in any way possible. It’s important to maintain focus on planned projects and operations and despite the current situation there are many opportunities to progress R&D/core business activities and be ready to return to normal operation as soon as possible’.

In addition to providing businesses with a wide range of RD&I funding solutions the CAPPA team are also available to discuss research projects, proposals, funding and product solutions. Including assistance with report writing and proposals for government and European funding.

CAPPA are also offering a free one-hour online consultation to any business who would like to discuss potential ideas for projects. If you wish to speak to a member of the CAPPA team, email cappa@cit.ie and a team member will contact you as soon as possible.

You can learn more about CAPPA here and follow them on Twitter and LinkedIn for all the latest updates.