TU Delft to lead three new, large-scale public-private research programmes

News - 21 November 2017 - Communication

Six new, large-scale research programmes will shortly be launched as part of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) ‘Perspective’ top-sector funding programme. TU Delft will play a role in all of these programmes, and will even lead three of them. The three programmes will focus on preventing sports injuries, the 3D-printing of metal objects and nanostructure imaging.

Every year, the NWO Applied and Engineering Sciences domain makes a research budget available to develop and fund new, challenging research programmes within the applied and engineering sciences. In this round, the NWO is making 21 million euros available for programmes that fit within the nine top sectors. The programmes also receive funding from involved businesses, civil society organisations and knowledge institutions. With a total budget of 32 million euros, 74 doctoral candidates and 25 post-docs will be able to work on the programmes for the coming five to six years.

TU Delft is playing a leading role in the following three projects:

Preventing sports injuries
‘Citius Altius Sanius - Better sports performance through injury prevention’

Preventing sports injuries ‘Citius Altius Sanius - Better sports performance through injury prevention’ There are 4.5 million injuries in the Netherlands each year, incurring 5 billion euros in direct medical costs. Half of these injuries could be prevented, for example by feeding information back to the athlete using sensor and data-science technology, and by using smart feedback equipment based on psychological knowledge to influence behaviour. In order to prevent injuries, the programme will develop three lines of research, looking at sensor technology, data-processing and feedback.

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Read the extended article on this programme.

Programme leader: Prof.dr. F.C.T. van der Helm (Technische Universiteit Delft)
Participants: Achmea, Adidas, AMC, Borre, Bosch, Cinoptics, Dopple, Fit!Vak, Fontys Hogescholen, Gemeente Amsterdam, Gemeente Eindhoven, Golazo Sports SX, Haagse Hogeschool, Hanzehogeschool Groningen, Hogeschool van Amsterdam, Hogeschool Arnhem-Nijmegen, Inmotio Object Tracking, InnosportLab Sport en Beweeg, International Tennis Federation, IZI BodyCooling, Kenniscentrum Sport, ManualFysion, 2M Engineering, Motekforce Link, MYLAPS, MyTemp, NedCard, NHTV Breda, Nijmeegse Vierdaagse Foundation, NOC*NSF, Noldus, NovioSense, Plux, Qualogy, Radboudumc, Reade Rehabilitation, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Koninklijke sportbonden (KNBSB, KNHB, KNLTB, KNVB, KNWV), Koninklijke Gazelle, Sailing Innovation Center, SWOV, Team Sunweb, Technische Universiteit Delft, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Universiteit Leiden, VirtuaGym, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, VUmc, Zevenheuvelenloop Foundation

3D-printing of large metal objects
'Additive Manufacturing for Extra Large Metal Components’

Metal additive manufacturing (AM), commonly known as ‘3D-printing’, is a method whereby a metal object is designed on a computer and then built up by a machine, layer by layer. Although AM technology also has the potential to have an enormous impact on a larger scale (objects of 1-10 metres), little attention is being paid to this at present. This programme intends to bring a change to this; something that may prove extremely relevant for the maritime sector, for example.

Read more
Read the extended article on this programme.

Programme leader: Prof.dr. I.M. Richardson (Technische Universiteit Delft)
Participants: Air Liquide B.V., Allseas, Autodesk, Damen, DEMCON, Element Materials Technology, Fokker Technologies Holding B.V., Heerema Fabrication Group, Huisman, Jungle, Lincoln Electric B.V., Lloyd’s Register EMEA, M2i, MX3D, OCAS NV, RAMLAB, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Shell, Technische Universiteit Delft, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Trumpf Nederland B.V., Universiteit Twente, Valk Welding B.V., VandeGrijp International Gear Suppliers B.V.

Extreme microscopy without lenses
‘Lensless Imaging of 3D Nanostructures with Soft X-Rays’

Lensless imaging is a form of microscopy in which image-forming optics is replaced with computer algorithms. A technology that is developing rapidly around the world, it can be used for imaging with the aid of Soft X-Rays (SXR), for example, in order to visualise nanostructures effectively on the new generation of chips. The objective of this research programme is to combine forces with various Dutch expert groups in order to develop a coherent SXR source in Delft, furthering the development of lensless imaging technology with SXR in the Netherlands. Read the extended report on this programme.

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Read the extended article on this programme. .

Programme leader: Prof.dr. H.P. Urbach (Technische Universiteit Delft)
Participants: AFS, ASML, Coherent, DEMCON / Focal, PANalytical, Technische Universiteit Delft, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, TNO, Universiteit Twente, Universiteit Utrecht, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, VSL

TU Delft is also involved in the other three research programmes:

Wearable robotics for unwilling muscles

‘Wearable robotics’

Someone who is confined to a wheelchair, owing to a muscle disorder, should be able to stand again independently, without having to use crutches. It might sound like a holy miracle, but this is actually the achievable objective of the Wearable Robotics research consortium. This programme is developing so-called Exo-Aids: soft, lightweight technology that fits comfortably, is affordable and easy to operate, and allows the wearer to make flexible, all-round movements. The objective is to allow people with spinal cord injuries or reduced muscle strength to become more mobile and independent. In addition, the researchers are developing technology that is intended to prevent work-related complaints such as lower back pain. Such complaints are common among people whose work involves heavy lifting or maintaining a curved posture for long periods.

Programme leader: Prof.dr.ir. H. van der Kooij (Universiteit Twente)
Participants: Baat Medical, Bond 3D, By-wire, DEMCON, Duchenne Parent Project, Dwarslaesie Organisatie Nederland, Festo, FSHD Patient Foundation, Hankamp Gears, Hocoma, IMSystems, Laevo, Landelijke Vereniging van Operatieassistenten, Motek, Oceanz, Opteq, Ottobock, Radboudumc, Roessingh Research and Development, Roessingh Revalidatie Techniek, Technische Universiteit Delft, Sint Maartenskliniek, Spieren voor Spieren, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, TNO, Twente Medical Systems International, Ultimaker, Universiteit Twente, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Xsens, Yumen Bionics

Using bacteria to convert syngas into chemical materials
'Novel Approaches for Microbial Syngas Conversion to Chemical Building Blocks'

Syngas is a mixture of carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and hydrogen that can serve as a raw material for the chemical industry. The MicroSynC research programme is developing methods, processes and bioreactors to convert syngas into useful chemical materials with the aid of micro-organisms. The researchers will search for suitable oxygen-free bacteria, which will then be used to produce the desired products in large quantities under non-sterile conditions. At the same time, the scientists will investigate the social acceptance of products that are made in this way.

Programme leader: Prof.dr.ir. A.J.M Stams, Wageningen University & Research
Participants: AkzoNobel, Bodec, CLIB2021, ECN, Flowid, ISPT, OxyMem, Paques B.V., Torrgas, Technische Universiteit Delft, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, VITO, Wageningen University & Research

Efficient self-learning systems
'Efficient Deep Learning'

Imagine a computer that is able to spot dangerous situations on security camera images: this is something that can be achieved, using self-learning computerised systems. Before such systems can operate independently, however, they have to be designed and then trained using a huge number of examples. In the Efficient Deep Learning programme, the researchers will make deep learning much more efficient and transparent, based on examples from daily practice. For example, they intend to make the technology applicable to automatic visual inspections, tissue analysis, the smart maintenance of equipment and intelligent hearing aids that can handle noisy environments, among other things. .

Programme leader: Prof.dr. H. Corporaal (Technische Universiteit Eindhoven)
Participants: AIIR Innovations, ASTRON, CWI, Cyclomedia, Cygnify, Donders Instituut, FEI, 2getthere, GN Hearing, Holst Centre, ING, Intel, Irdeto, Lely, Mobiquity, NLeSC, NXP, NVIDIA, Océ, Radboudumc, Schiphol, Scyfer, Sectra, Semiotic Labs, Siemens, Sightcorp, Sorama, SURFsara, TASS International, Tata Steel, Technische Universität Dresden, Technische Universiteit Delft, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Thales, TNO, TomTom, Universiteit Twente, Universiteit van Amsterdam, 3DUniversum, VicarVision, ViNotion, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Wageningen University & Research

For more information about all of the programmes, see the video below or read the NWO press release.

32 miljoen euro voor technologisch toponderzoek | NWO-programma Perspectief

(Image credits: Getty Images, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, United States Deparment of Energy)