Waterford Institute of Technology’s TSSG and University College Cork’s Tyndall Institute have signed a memorandum of understanding to target €82m in EU funding to support 10 internet of things start-ups.
The research bodies aim to draw down the €82m from the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme.
“Our combined staff of 580 hardware and 120 software engineers, support staff and scientists, together with Tyndall and TSSG’s world-class infrastructure make this partnership uniquely qualified to deliver,” said Dr Kieran Drain, CEO of the Tyndall National Institute.
“At Tyndall we passionately believe that Irish technology companies have the potential to lead on the internet of things (IoT) and that it is our role to facilitate and accelerate their growth from product conception through to commercial reality. This MoU will accelerate the development of new technologies, generating new growth opportunities for indigenous industry, while also encouraging further foreign direct investment.”
The rapidly expanding internet of things market – where physical objects interact with the internet – was valued at US$613m (€473m) last year alone and will be worth an estimated US$7.1trn (€5.5trn) between now and 2020.
Tyndall National Institute CEO Dr Kieran Drain, Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation Damien English TD and the director of Waterford IT’s TSSG, Willie Donnelly
Prof Willie Donnelly, founder, director and chair, TSSG, said a key focus of the joint plan is to create technologies that will extend beyond the internet of things and into an everyday future for the citizens of tomorrow’s societies.
“The partnership will place Ireland at the centre of the IoT conversation, positioning Ireland as a location of preference for the IOT industry. TSSG are delighted to be partnering with Tyndall and we look forward to what will be a very exciting future with them.”
Tyndall and TSSG are currently collaborating on several projects across the energy, agriculture, environment and health sectors to deliver a tangible connection for people between two worlds, the physical and connected.
The advent of wearable technologies, smart appliances and services, along with dynamic sensors, all indicate the need for Ireland to capitalise on its reputation as a digital hub and lead on IoT technologies.
This MoU encapsulates that goal, said Damien English, TD, Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation.
“This strategic partnership adds great strength to the position of Tyndall and TSSG as leaders in the development of new technologies and companies in the ICT sector,” English said.
“It is the responsibility of the Government to ensure that Irish innovation continues to be at the forefront of technological development and that through the facilitation of such projects and collaborations, commercialisation opportunities are maximised and job creation is accelerated.”