Irish Photonic Integration Centre opens at Tyndall National Institute

Pictured: Minister for Research and Innovation Sean Sherlock; director of IPIC at Tyndall National Institute Prof Paul Townsend; and Prof Mark Ferguson, director general, SFI

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27 January 2014 | 0

The Irish Photonic Integration Centre (IPIC) led by Tyndall National Institute in collaboration with University College Cork (UCC), Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) and Dublin City University (DCU) was officially opened last Friday.

The new Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) research centre brings together over 100 researchers from the four institutes to develop new light-enabled technologies. The team will work with 18 industry partners including multinationals, Irish SMEs and high-tech start-ups. It will receive €20 million from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through SFI’s Research Centres Programme, with an additional €10 million leveraged from industry.

The centre will also act as a start-up base, with new high-tech company, X-Celeprint, already committed to base its headquarters in Tyndall and to create up to 20 jobs in the next two years.

Targeting the ICT and medical devices sectors, IPIC will work with industry to develop the next generation of highly-compact and miniaturised photonic technologies. Over the next six years, the Centre has ambitious plans to catalyse the creation of 200 new jobs through 30 research projects and the commercialisation of new photonic technologies. The centre’s work will focus on revolutionising the speed of data transfer, creating more energy efficient devices and delivering new smart medical devices for improved diagnosis and treatment of disease.

Outlining the vision for IPIC, Paul Townsend, IPIC director, said; “The launch of IPIC represents an exciting new chapter in photonic research in Ireland, which aims to achieve both measurable economic impact and global scientific recognition for Ireland in this sector. The Centre brings together a full research ‘value chain’ with expertise that spans from semiconductor and bio-materials, through integrated photonic and microelectronic circuits, to fully-packaged photonic systems. As a result, IPIC will be uniquely placed to drive new advances in photonic science and technology and to harness these innovations to solve some of the key challenges facing our industry partners.”

Prof Mark Ferguson, director general of SFI and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Irish Government added: “The launch of this new centre is an important development as both of the major sectors it will support are showing significant growth in Ireland. This is an excellent example of the kind of collaboration between industry and academia that we will continue to encourage: excellent science with impact.”

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