In the coming years, six consortia of companies, educational and knowledge institutions and governments will work on research aimed at technological innovation with economic potential. Within the so-called Perspective program of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) they will receive a total of 22 million euros from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Change and 10 million euros from the 138 companies and civil society organizations involved. TU/e is part of all six consortia, and is also program leader in two of them.
Perspective is a program that challenges scientists to set up new lines of research with economic and social impact in collaboration with industry and civil society organizations. Perspective aims to contribute to the creation of economic opportunities within the key technologies and societal themes of the mission-driven innovation policy.
A characteristic of Perspective is the composition of the consortia: all the key players needed to arrive at usable solutions in practice participate. The strength of the collaboration is also solid due to the good, mutual contacts between the universities, industry and civil society organizations.
“The strong, long-term collaboration, including in the field of engineering, makes these kinds of broad and influential consortia possible and exploits everyone’s added value.”
Prof.dr. Philip de Goey, dean of the department of Mechanical Engineering
THE AWARDED PROGRAMS:
SMART Organ-on-Chip: Standardized Open Modular Approach to Recapitulate Tissues
Tiny pieces of living human organs on a plastic chip: so-called organ-on-chip systems are already being used in laboratories for scientific studies and to test drugs. Within this program 33 knowledge institutions, companies and social organizations will develop a universal and modular basic system for organs on a chip, suitable for the industrial-scale testing of medicines, foodstuffs, chemicals or cosmetics. They will start with intestinal, skin and joint models.
Programme leader: Prof. Dr. Jaap den Toonder (TU/e)
MEGAMIND – Measuring, Gathering, Mining and Integrating Data for Self-management in the Edge of the Electricity System
As a result of the energy transition, our electricity system is changing significantly. The demand for electricity is increasing, partly due to the growth in the number of heat pumps and electric cars and buses. At the same time, the supply is becoming more volatile due to a growing share of sustainable electricity from wind and solar power. The MEGAMIND program brings together knowledge of energy systems, artificial intelligence and regulation in order to develop both the necessary technology and appropriate regulations.
Programme leader: Prof. Dr. Koen Kok (TU/e)
Self-sufficiency in fresh water supply
AquaConnect – ‘Key technologies for safeguarding regional water provision in fresh water stressed deltas’.
More and more often in the Netherlands we are faced with fresh water shortages due to severe drought. The extensive AquaConnect consortium offers a solution for this: the researchers want to enable the use of wastewater and brackish groundwater with new water purification technologies. The program will show four regions how they can become self-sufficient in fresh water supply as an example for other places in the world.
Programme leader: Prof. Dr. Huub Rijnaarts (Wageningen University & Research)
Involved from TU/e: prof. Jeroen Voeten (department of Electrical Engineering)
CO2 reduction through lighter transport
ENLIGHTEN – Enabling Integrated Lightweight Structures In High Volumes
The lighter the means of transport, the less fuel it consumes and CO2 it emits. Lightweight materials that are strong enough to ensure passenger safety are therefore in demand by car and aircraft manufacturers. Within the ENLIGHTEN program, a multidisciplinary team of researchers is developing a scientifically proven design and production method to make reliable larger structures with so-called thermoplastic composites in a targeted, reproducible and cost-effective manner. These are fiber-reinforced plastics that become soft when heated; they are light, strong, easy to process and easy to recycle.
Program leader: Prof. dr.ir. Remko Akkerman (University of Twente)
Involved from TU/e: prof. Leon Govaert (department of Mechanical Engineering)
Superhighway for digital data
Optical Wireless Superhighways: Free photons (at home and in space): FREE
Information is the oxygen of our current digital society. But how do you send and process digital data at high speeds, with few delays, and in a safe way? In this program, 21 partners work together on solutions that use light to create reliable and secure wireless broadband connections, instead of the radio waves on which the 5G network is based.
Programme leader: Prof. Dr. E. Gill (Delft University of Technology)
Involved from TU/e: Prof. Ton Koonen (department Electrical Engineering)
Better separation technology for recycling raw materials
ReCoVR: Recovery and Circularity of Valuable Resources
As a result of the growing world population, raw materials are becoming increasingly scarce. Therefore, the Netherlands has the objective to have a circular economy in 2050 in which all raw materials are reusable. However, this requires new separation technologies that can extract valuable materials from streams that would otherwise have ended up as waste. In this program, researchers are developing new materials and coatings for electrically driven separation technologies that are more energy efficient, cleaner and more specific than current separation methods.
Program leader: Dr. Sissi de Beer (University of Twente)
Involved from TU/e: Prof. Kitty Nijmeijer (department of Chemical Engineering & Chemistry)