Tyndall National Institute and Waterford Institute of Technology’s Telecommunications Software & Systems Group (TSSG), have today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to exploit the market potential of the Internet of Things (IoT) and seek to draw down €82m of funding available under EU’s Horizon 2020 programme.
The MoU will formalise a partnership between the research institutions, which combines Tyndall and TSSG’s industry leading expertise in hardware and software development respectively, to create a full end-to-end offering in the IoT space.
The MoU is targeting the creation of 10 new spin out companies based on IoT technologies that will span across multiple sectors.
The term ‘Internet of Things’ has come to describe a number of technologies and research disciplines that enable the internet to reach out into real-world physical objects – effectively the Internet in physical form. This rapidly expanding market was valued at $613m (€473m) last year alone and will be worth, an estimated, $7.1 (€5.5) trillion between now and 2020.
Market increases in 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.
The ubiquity of the Internet of Things and its diverse applications means new technologies and subsequent new roles will be spread across a wide breadth of sectors and industries. 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.
One project already underway will have transformative affects for the healthcare community by enabling tailored rehabilitation programmes. A second project will enable the creation of a smart, farm management systems by monitoring and analysing key data such as cattle movement and feed patterns and grass growth.
Speaking at the launch, Damien English TD, Minister for Skills Research & Innovation commented: “Today’s announcement shows how Irish research institutions are combining to develop technologies and solutions that will impact on the world stage. 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. 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.”
Dr Kieran Drain, CEO Tyndall National Institute, added: “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. At Tyndall we passionately believe that Irish technology companies have the potential to lead on 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.”
Professor Willie Donnelly, director of Waterford Institute of Technology’s TSSG commented: “The partnership between TSSG and Tyndall is a partnership brought about by a clear vision that both global research organisations have on producing products and services that will extend beyond the IoT and into an everyday future for the citizens of today’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.”