€3.5 million in funding announced for two AIT Enterprise Ireland Gateways – Applied Polymer Technologies ( APT) & COMAND
Athlone Institute of Technology’s two Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateways, Applied Polymer Technologies (APT) and COMAND (Connected Media Application Design and Delivery) is to receive €3.5 million from the Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway network for a 5 year period to continue the market-leading research projects and solutions that both gateways are involved in regionally and nationally.
The first of the two Technology Gateway centres based in AIT is the Applied Polymer Technologies (APT) Gateway. APT Ireland provides world-class solutions for SME’s and Multinational companies using polymer materials across the medical, composite, recycling and pharmaceutical sectors. The APT Gateway is based in AIT’s Materials Research
Institute and is the Applied Polymer Materials access point to Enterprise Irelands Technology Gateway Network. The Gateway delivers technology solutions for Irish industry close to their market needs, is an open access point for industry of all sizes, acts as local access points to the wider resources in the Irish research infrastructure and has a proven track record of delivering for industry.
Noel Gately, APT Gateway Centre Manager speaking on the funding announcement today said “APT is providing services to industry across many sectors including pharmaceutical, medical devices, composites, food and beverage packaging, automotive and the agri sector. We work with a range of companies across a variety of different themes, our expertise is in polymer materials which includes polymer material design, processing and characterization. We have experts in the field of design for manufacturability, polymer processing in terms of injection moulding, extrusion, thermoforming and fibre spinning and we also have experts in the characterization of polymer material and their extractables. The refunding of APT is yet another endorsement by EI of the valuable skills and expertise here in AIT which provides support to the polymer industry in Ireland.”
Professor Ciarán Ó Catháin, President of AIT commented that “since its foundation over 50 years ago AIT has worked and supported both regional and national industry through the provision of highly skilled graduates in a number of core areas. Research in AIT builds on these strengths and an international network of graduates to develop those close to market solutions for industry partners. This work has been recognised at a national level through the continued funding of two Enterprise Ireland Gateway Centers, Comand and APT which provide high TRL research solutions in the areas of connected media and polymer processing.”
The second gateway that secured a new round of funding is Comand based in AIT. COMAND works with a range of SMEs and multinationals across various industries in the IT, Software and Connected Media fields. Comand’s R&D focuses on cross-platform applications, mobile media, cloud, 3D sensing and connected media applications. Its AIT’s Software Research Institute (SRI) based research engineers have extensive experience working with industry and other academic collaborators worldwide.
Anthony Cunningham, Comand Technology Gateway said, “The COMAND Technology gateway is an open access point for Industry to avail of any collaborative expertise in Interactive Media Technologies, End-to-end applications, Intelligent Infrastructure with Mobile, Cloud Computing and Internet of Things - all which are applicable in a wide range of commercial fields in telecoms, gaming, entertainment, e-health, e-learning and digital marketing.” He added, “We were delighted to have received over €1.5m in funding to Comand and AIT and it is a testimony to the fantastic work that our engineers have delivered in the past 5 years. We have to deliver 70 contracted projects with industry per annum over the next 5 years which is significant growth and a challenge to us. We are an open access point for industry and a portal to develop and deliver engineering in the connected media space for augment user interactions, end to end applications and intelligent infrastructures that are needed in industry today. We are a real market point delivery for all applications in the connected media space.”
John Halligan TD, Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development announced funding of €26.75m for the Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Network over the five year period from 2018-2022. Announcing the funding, Minister John Halligan TD said, “The Technology Gateway Network programme aims to bring Irish companies together with the researchers in the Institutes of Technology to provide near-to-market innovation and solutions in a range of areas, both regionally and nationally.”
Gearoid Mooney, Manager, Research and Innovation, Enterprise Ireland added: “The Enterprise Ireland Technology Gateway Network offers an open access point for industry providing technology expertise which is industry relevant. Projects range from small starts-up in the regions making use of the Enterprise Ireland’s Innovation Voucher Scheme, to larger companies using the Innovation Partnership Programme. However, the most common mechanism by which companies engage via the Gateways is through projects they pay for completely themselves without leveraging any state funding. This is a testament to both the trust built up between the companies and the Gateways, and the capability of the research community in the Institutes of Technology”.
Mark Whelan, Technology Gateway Programme Manager from Enterprise Ireland added that “Enterprise Ireland funds the Technology Gateway programme objective is to allow industry to interact with the Institutes of Technology and to use their core capabilities to solve their problems. There are 15 gateways in the network through 11 different institutes of technology, two of which are based in Athlone. To date the programme has delivered over 2,500 projects for industry worth approximately €25 million euros. I am delighted to announce that both APT and Comand have been successful in reapplying for funding for a further 5 year period. For those 5 years APT and Comand have been awarded €3.5 for them to continue working with industry.”
Since its formation in 2013, the Technology Gateway Network has completed over 2,750 innovative projects with over 1,250 Irish based companies. Projects range from polymers to pharmaceuticals, photonics to mobile services and mechatronics, right through to biotechnology and industrial design. Typical projects focus on the development of a new product or service or the optimization of a process, across all sectors of the economy and based in every county.
For more information, go to www.technologygateway.ie
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Pictured left to right - Anthony Cunningham, COMAND Technology Gateway Manager, Mark Whelan, Technology Gateway Programme Manager, Enterprise Ireland and Noel Gately, APT Gateway Centre Manager