Covid-19

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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.

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IT Sligo & PEM Gateway provide vital assistance in COVID-19 fight

Researchers and engineers from the Institute of Technology Sligo are using their knowledge, expertise and facilities to assist in the current fight against COVID-19. The institute’s  response was immediate when a call came from Sligo University Hospital (SUH) to provide assistance.

As an initial response the Institute set to work collecting PPE from across the various departments for delivery to frontline staff in SUH. A team from within the School of Engineering and Design and PEM Technology Gateway used 3D printed technology to design and produce essential face shields as well as working on a prototype emergency ventilator which is now close to production stage. The team hope to share the design with other Technology Gateways to benefit others around the country. SUH are currently also in need of sterilisation units and CPAP masks, these are being worked on at the moment.

With the current worldwide shortage of certain elements of the COVID-19 test. The institute set to work sourcing several components required, with the result being that two key elements of the test are now created onsite.

 The efforts of IT Sligo staff engaged in the fight against COVID-19 was recently featured on the RTE Six One News, you can view the segment here.

Update: The PPE face shield production line is now fully operational with shifts manned by volunteers from across the Institute. Supplying front line staff in the HSE, Ambulance Service and An Garda Síochána in the North West

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Enterprise Ireland Covid-19 Funding and Supports

Following the outbreak of the global pandemic Covid-19 on our shores, many Irish business have experienced disruption, shock and future uncertainty. To assist with this unprecedented event, Enterprise Ireland has recently launched a Covid-19 web resource. Providing Irish business with practical advice and guidance on the Covid-19 response, information on available Government funding and supports and the latest news and insights.

There is no doubt this is an extremely difficult period for the business community. To assist with the challenges ahead a range of new Covid-19 funding supports has been put in place by the Government of Ireland. Through Enterprise Ireland, Irish business can now avail of a range of funding supports to help alleviate the impact of Covid-19. Further information on all Covid-19 supports can be found here on the Enterprise Ireland website.

 The Enterprise Ireland Business Response Supports include:

As well as a range of other supports such as:

  • Lean Business Continuity Voucher
  • Covid-19 Online Retail Scheme
  • Covid-19 Act on Supports
  • Key Manager Grant
  • Business Process Improvement Grant
  • Rapid Response Research and Innovation Funding
  • eiLearn Online Learning platform

Further information on these Covid-19 supports can be found here

Enterprise Ireland also has a range of Innovation, Diversification and competitiveness supports available. For more information on these supports companies should contact their Development Advisor.

 

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Technology Gateway statement on COVID-19

In line with the latest guidance from the Government of Ireland regarding the spread of Coronavirus (COVID 19), Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway centres, situated in 9 Institutes of Technology and 1 Technological University are currently closed in some cases to staff and the public.

The Technology Gateway Network is however still open for business and in line with social distancing practices our teams throughout the country continue to provide a service to Irish industry via remote working. Communicating with clients through email, phone and teleconferencing.

Our teams are currently contacting all clients with ongoing projects but should you require further information, please get in touch with your Technology Gateway Manager directly by phone or email. Contact details can be found here.

Technology Gateways will continue to provide the business community with a wide range of innovation supports and funding. For general information or new client enquiries please contact the Network office in Dublin or your regional Technology Gateway Manager. We will respond to your enquiry as quickly as possible.

For the latest updates please see www.technologygateway.ie or follow us on Twitter