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Funding for Game-Changing Ideas awarded to Irish SMEs and Researchers

Posted on: 26 Mar 2020

Funding for Game-Changing Ideas awarded to Irish SMEs and Researchers

The European Innovation Council (EIC) Accelerator and Pathfinder programmes were launched as a pilot in 2017 as part of the Horizon 2020 programme to stimulate game changing ideas. The EIC aims to support top-class innovators, entrepreneurs, small companies and researchers who have smart, but highly risky innovations and breakthrough technologies that have the potential to scale up internationally.

More than €7 million in research funding has been awarded to Irish SMEs and universities by the European Union as part of the last call by the EIC.

Tyndall has been awarded around €900k for two game changing projects – SpinAge and PHEMTRONICS.

Dr. Giorgos Fagas, Head of EU Programmes and Chair of the CMOS++ Research Cluster, said:

This is an impressive best performance in the EIC Pathfinder by Tyndall researchers and Ireland overall. This programme is extremely selective of high-risk game-changing ideas. We are watching with great anticipation the next steps of the two projects as they are key to Tyndall’s activities in next generation computing and communications.

Tyndall researchers Brian Corbett and John Justice, both involved with the SpinAge project will be bringing their expertise on board regarding on-chip and plasmonic laser fabrication.

The brain is a highly complex, high performance and low energy computing system due to its massive parallelism and intertwined network, which outperforms the current computers by orders of magnitudes, especially for cognitive computing applications. A large effort has been made to understand the computing and mimicking of the brain. Its artificial implementation, that is neuromorphic computing systems (NCS), has received much attention thanks to the advances in novel nanoscale technologies.

The main goal of SpinAge is to realize a novel NCS enabling large-scale development of brain-inspired devices outclassing the performance of current computing machines. This will be achieved by the novel structures using spintronics and memristors, on-chip laser technology, nano electronics and finally advanced integration of all these technologies. The breakthrough platform technology is expected to lead to at least 4-5 orders of magnitude better performance than the state-of-the-art and will demonstrate EU leadership of advanced neuromorphic computing.

Tyndall researchers Mircea Modreanu and Ian Povey are involved with the PHEMTRONICS project and will be sharing their expertise in processing and characterisation of novel transdimensional materials platforms.

The PHEMTRONICS project will deliver innovative ultrafast light induced phase-change switches, dynamically reconfigurable nanoantennas and adaptive switchable multiple-band detectors surpassing the current paradigms of speed, energy and frequencies.

The PHEMTRONICS interdisciplinary team covering the whole value chain, from a novel class of plasmonic phase-change materials, to fabrication, design, modelling tools and integration to new device architectures, will herald a new era in the fields of mobile communications, optical computing, ultrafast athermal switching for neuromorphic computation, tuneable nanopixel displays, creating new markets and reinforcing the leadership of European research and industrial players.

Funding has also been awarded to:

Dublin-based ProVerum is to use the funds to further develop its treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia, a common condition in older men that can cause difficulty with urination.

Rockfield is receiving funding to commercialise its MobilityPlus feed delivery systems, which transform the mobility and quality of life of those on tube feeding.

Six researchers, based in Trinity College Dublin (TCD), University College Dublin (UCD) and University College Cork (UCC), are to receive funds for five pan-European research projects for which they are either the coordinator or a partner. Find out more here