Page 1

Research Showcase


Environmental Health Sciences Institute (EHSI) An interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral approach to research The Environmental Health Sciences Institute (EHSI) is a dedicated national translational research platform, uniquely based on collaboration between the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), the Health Service Executive (HSE) and Dublin City Council (DCC), building national and regional capacity and capability. EHSI is an all-island initiative, involving strategic partnerships with the University of Ulster (UU), Dublin City University (DCU), the Institute of Public Health (IPH) and other stakeholders. It is uniquely positioned to facilitate an interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral approach, integrating academic research with the knowledge and expertise of relevant professionals to generate collective responses to public health issues (Fig. 1). EHSI forges new ground in understanding the interactions between environment and health, in addition to developing evidence-based interventions to address environmental health problems. Factors that impact health & well being

Interventions (e.g. by the Environmental Health Sciences Institute)

The living environment and key exposure routes that impact human health & well being

Research at EHSI The research programme builds on respective and complementary expertise of Environmental Health Academics and Practitioners (EHAPs). Interdisciplinary teams pursue Specific Areas Of Research Focus (SARFs) to provide the evidence base and develop interventions consistent with the objectives of Ireland‘s National Environmental Health Action Plan (NEHAP). EHSI’s research is underpinned by Cross-Cutting Research Activities (CCRA’s):

Specific Areas of Research Focus (SARF’s) • • • • •

Water Energy Food Bio-monitoring Policy & Lifestyle

Cross-Cutting Research Activities (CCRA’S) • Teaching, Learning & Outreach • Technology Development & Commercialisation  Hygiene & Infection Control Technologies  Assistive Technology  Monitoring Technologies  Healthcare Technologies • Maths, Computational Methods & Health Informatics Fig. 1 Sphere of Environmental Health and potential Interventions by EHSI By integrating scientific and technical expertise with policy and regulatory capability in addition to relevant industry partners, EHSI bridges the science-policy-innovation gap (Fig. 2). EHSI exploits new ways of working together and offers access to the collective resources to facilitate research and training for practitioners.

New Research facility, Grangegorman EHSI will be central to DIT’s research hub on the Grangegorman campus and it will complement the HSE’s existing health facilities already on site. EHSI will occupy a new, dedicated research facility (2500m2); work is currently underway and the new building is targeted for occupation in 2015

Research

Science & Innovation

GAP

Policy

Fig. 2 EHSI bridging the science-policy-innovation gap The EHSI partners develop a scientific evidence base to: 1. Provide practical solutions to environmental health problems, 2. Inform environmental health policy, planning, decision making 3. Impact on health of vulnerable populations and facilitate investments to reduce the burden of chronic disease and injuries

Contact Details Dr Noreen Layden Head of Environmental Health Sciences Institute (EHSI) Dublin Institute of Technology, Kevin Street,

Ultimately, the overarching mission and vision is to achieve healthier lives for children, the elderly and vulnerable populations.

Dublin 8, IRELAND Tel: +353 (0)1 402 7918 E-mail: noreen.layden@dit.ie

Investing in your future

Email noreen.layden@dit.ie


Food & Health Research Centre (FHRC) RESEARCH INTERESTS Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals Bio-prospecting from dairy, marine, brewing, fruit and vegetable industries Fermentation for bioactive ingredients Plant Genetic diversity and conservation

Post-Harvest and Non- thermal Technologies Quality and nutritional characteristics shelf-life extension Cold Plasma, Ozone, Ultrasound Applied Modelling for process optimisation Novel and natural antimicrobials and technologies

THE TEAM  The FHRC was established in 2010 and is part of the Environmental Health Sciences Institute at DIT.  Research within the FHRC is interdisciplinary and applied in nature and is both industry and policy relevant.  The cross-disciplinary teams of researchers focus on food safety, quality and nutrition including nutraceutical research and the development of innovative foods that are health enhancing and novel technologies to enhance both food safety and health.  The FHRC currently comprises DIT staff, post-doctoral researchers and post graduates students from the Schools of Food Science and Environmental Health, School of Culinary Arts and Food Technology as well as the School of Biological Sciences.

Food Product Development and Culinary Innovation Sensory analysis and consumer evaluation, Process and product innovation,

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS

Molecular Gastronomy Cereal and Baking Technology

100’s of peer reviewed publications & numerous books Sustained Substantial research funding (Industrial, National & International)

Food Safety and Diagnostic Tools Environmental and Nutritional Health Risk assessment and management

Sustained Numerous PhD MSc & MPhil completions

Metabolic profiling, Hyper spectral imaging, PAT.

Technology transfer record with Licenses and Patents granted and pending.

Small molecule Biotechnology Carbohydrate synthetic chemistry and enzymatic biosynthesis Molecular enzymology & Process engineering

FACILITIES Pilot and lab-scale processing

Human Health and Nutrition: Interactions with functional ingredients Status and evidence based solutions at demographic level

Commercial product preparation Food packaging systems Fully equipped sensory laboratory

CONTACT DETAILS

Fully equipped instrumental analytical suite

To find out more about the ongoing research or people in the FHRC, please contact one of the following researchers from the College of Science and Health at DIT.

Non-thermal processing technology suite

Paula.bourke@dit.ie

Catherine.barryryan@dit.ie

Food Analysis & Shelf-life Determination

Dedicated Pathogen, Microbiology, Chemistry, Biochemistry & Postharvest research laboratories Structural and functional genomic analysis

Contact : catherine.barryryan@dit.ie / paula.bourke@dit.ie


Bioactive Compounds from Seaweed SUMMARY / ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL

Seaweeds, or marine macro-algae, are renewable living resources which are used as food, feed and fertilizer in many parts of the world. The consumption of seaweed as food and nutraceuticals has been well known in the East, where they constitute an alternative to vegetables in human diet. In the West, many products are manufactured with seaweeds or their derivatives, such as sauces, creams, toothpaste and milk shakes of fruits. Seaweeds are of nutritional interest as they are a low calorie food and are rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins, polyphenols, polysaccharides and dietary fibres. Nowadays, increasingly seaweeds are being investigated for the biological activity of their extracts which are finding numerous applications in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and food preservatives. Seaweeds are an important resource of bioactive compounds as they are able to produce a great variety of secondary metabolites characterized by a broad spectrum of biological behaviour such as antibacterial, antioxidant, anticancer, anticoagulant and antiviral properties. Recently in Europe (CE 258/97), seaweeds are considered as new foods, and they could also be considered as functional foods. This regulation, in addition to the novel bioactive compounds and potential nutritional properties of seaweeds, allows the food and pharmaceutical industry to include seaweeds as raw or semiprocessed materials in the formulation of food and health based products.

 A “Greener Extraction and Processing Technology” for the extraction of phenolic antioxidant-rich compounds has been developed and is ready for commercialisation.  Seaweed extracts contain excellent antimicrobial and antioxidant properties providing opportunities for application as natural food preservatives or nutraceuticals, for the food and pharmaceutical industries.  Due to the remarkable bioactivity and availability of essential elements in seaweeds, their extracts can be utilised as an ingredients for the production of nutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals, functional foods and drinks.  Due to their high thermal stability, these bioactive compounds could provide new avenues for developing new nutraceutical foods based on seaweeds with particular considerations of processing conditions.  Algal polyphenols, including flavonoids and tannins in seaweeds show high antimicrobial and antioxidant potency in comparison to their counterparts in land vegetables. Seaweed

CC

LLP

TLC

SPE

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE  Optimisation of extraction solvents to extract a range of hydrophilic and lipophilic bioactive compounds with potential antioxidant and antimicrobial activity.  Selective extracts demonstrated high potential against various food borne bacteria and free radicals, which are responsible not only for the deterioration of quality and nutritional value of food products but also human health.

Extracts

Various Purification Approaches

NMR

 Optimisation of purification strategies to select the individual or group of active compounds from crude extracts of seaweed.

LC-MS Characterization of Purified Fractions/Compound

Purified Fractions

HPLC

 Purified extracts or compounds showed highly significant antioxidant and antimicrobial activity at very low concentration. Uses of Seaweeds

 Optimisation of various chromatographic and spectroscopic methods to isolate and identify the compounds of interest.  Development of Hydrothermal processing approach which improved the extractability and bioavailability of bioactive compounds from seaweed matrix.

Fresh Irish brown seaweed

Crushed with

Powdered

Crushed powder and extraction

liquid nitrogen

seaweed

solvents in a certain ratio

The work presented here has generated:  1 patent pending  5 full length research articles in various peer reviewed international journals  2 book chapters

Dried extract used for further chemical analysis

 Work has been presented in various national and international conferences Evaporate the

Centrifuged

solvents

Filtered the

Incubate the flasks at

supernatant

certain conditions

TEAM / FUNDERS Dr Nissreen Abu-Ghannam (Principal Investigator, research supervisor) Dr. Gaurav Rajauria (Scientific researcher)

AND

Crude and purified extracts

Antimicrobial Activity

Antioxidant Activity

The researchers acknowledge funding from the Irish Government under the Technological Sector Research Scheme (Strand III) of the National Development Plan.

e-mail: nissreen.abughannam@dit.ie


Probiotic fermentation of Brassica Vegetables SUMMARY / ABSTRACT

POTENTIAL

Brassica vegetables include a number of common vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, kale and kohlrabi. These vegetables are rich in a number of bioactive metabolites such as vitamins, phenolic acids, flavonoids and isothiocyanates, which are associated with significant health benefits such as antioxidant and anticancer properties . Brassicas account for almost half (47%) of all field vegetable production by area in Ireland with cabbage and broccoli at 19% and 13% respectively. Recent research has shown that consumption of fruit and vegetables is positively associated with the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes, hypertension and strokes. This research is exploring new processing methodologies for exploiting a range of Irish vegetables for the development of new functional foods through the application of probiotic fermentation. The products developed will capitalise on the already-established health promoting benefits of probiotics and the capacity of the fermentation process to produce new products with enhanced flavours, aromas and new textures. Products developed from this research have the potential to increase vegetable consumption in the Irish diet.

 Bioactive compounds of Brassica vegetables may be exploited as biopreservatives in food applications, or neutraceuticals for possible applications in functional foods for health promotion.  Salt-free probiotic fermented vegetables with enhanced neutraceutical properties, flavours and aromas can offer attractive new options for vegetable consumption in the Irish diet.  Vegetable based probiotic juice with high concentrations of active probiotic bacteria, enhanced levels of isothiocyanates with inherent polyphenols and antioxidant properties can potentially be developed into innovative products in the health drink sector.  In comparison to the dairy industry, which has a well-established market niche for probiotic fermentation products, the application of this technology to plant products is seriously underdeveloped. The research so far has pointed to significant opportunities to develop new functional foods from Irish vegetables.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE  Optimization of extraction procedures for polyphenols from Brassica vegetables.  Evaluation of antioxidant and antimicrobial properties of Irish Brassica species.  Probiotic fermented vegetable products shown to retain most of their initial polyphenol content (> 80%) and antioxidant properties (> 90%).  Probiotic fermentation under conditions established in this research, using a Bioflo 415 bioreactor, successfully established methodologies for the degradation of non-nutritive glucosinolates and generation of breakdown products such as isothiocyanates, which are well known for their chemopreventive properties.

White cabbage

Stalk removed

Cut cabbage

Juice preparation

Bioflo 415 Bioreactor (7 lit capacity) High Probiotic bacteria

Filtration Antioxidant Activity

Longer shelf life

 Eight papers were published in various peer reviewed international journals.

Probiotic cabbage Juice High Organic acid content

 1 book chapter Polyphenol Rich

Low sugar content

KEY OUTPUTS  Results were presented in various symposium and international conferences.

Probiotic juice Probiotic Fermentation

Sterilization of Juice

Schematic presentation of probiotic cabbage juice preparation

TEAM / FUNDERS Dr. Nissreen Abu-Ghannam (Principal Investigator, research supervisor) Dr. Amit Kumar Jaiswal (Postdoctoral researcher) The researchers acknowledge funding from the Irish government under the Technological Sector Research Scheme (Strand III) of the National Development Plan.

e-mail: nissreen.abughannam@dit.ie


New applications for Brewing Industry by-products SUMMARY / ABSTRACT Brewers spent grain (BSG) is the main waste product from beer production (85%) and equates to approximately 20 kg per 100 litres of beer produced. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 160,000 tonnes of BSG are produced annually in Ireland, while across Europe the figure is about 3.4 million tonnes per annum. BSG is a valuable natural resource, containing dietary fibre (up to 70%), protein (25%), phenolic substances and carbohydrates and has potential benefits for human nutrition. However, until now it has been sold as cattle feed, composted or disposed of in landfill and has received little attention as a marketable commodity. The recycling of brewers spent grain has great potential due to its high availability, low cost and proven safety for human consumption. This project investigates the potential of BSG in generating new potential functional foods and nutraceuticals through the application of the extrusion process or by employing a number of physical and chemical methods to extract valuable bioactive compounds such as arabinoxylans.

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL  Valuable information on the range of bioactive phenolic compounds in BSG as potential nutraceutical and pharmaceutical ingredients  A range of healthy snack prototypes have been developed by extrusion with much higher fibre level and lower Glycaemic index than typical commercial healthy snacks suggesting possible applications in the diabetic or weight control sectors.  “Green methods” for the extraction of arabinoxylans  Water extractable arabinoxylans has potential use in the food industry as food hydrocolloids.  Alkaline extractable arabinoxylans has potential applications in material sciences including textiles and packaging.

Dietary supplementation of arabinoxylans has been reported to have many health benefits including lower cholesterol absorption and control of type-2 diabetes.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE  Fibre content, phenolic content and antioxidant capacity increased with the incorporation of up to 30% of BSG in extruded healthy snacks.  The insoluble fibre arabinoxylans is a major dietary fibre in BSG with significant antioxidant activity and offers may possibilities for new ingredient manufacture. Arabinoxylans showed bifidogenic properties (promote the growth of bifidobacterium in the gut).  Current research is focusing on developing “Green methods” incorporating water, ultrasound and a combination treatment of pressure and temperature to enhance the levels of arabionxylans extraction from BSG for applications in the food and pharmaceutical industries.

Spent grain

Freeze-dried spent grain

Extrusion process

Figure 2 Schematic of arabinoxylans extraction procedure

TEAM / FUNDERS Dr. Nissreen Abu-Ghannam (Principal Investigator, research supervisor) Sofia Reis (PhD student) The researchers acknowledge funding from the Irish Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine. FIRM project No. 08RDTAFRC665 Extruded snacks

School of Food Science and Environmental Health Figure 1 Schematic for the generation of healthy extruded snacks

College of Sciences & Health

E-mail: nissreen.abughannam@dit.ie


BSG: Potential Application in Functional Foods SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

 Brewers’ spent grain (BSG) is the major by-product of the brewing industry.

 The addition of BSG as a functional ingredient for bakery products opens up new potential for its utilization.

 Representing around 85% of the total by-products generated.  20 kg BSG per 100 litre of beer produced.  3.4 million tonnes of BSG are produced in the EU every year.  Main application has been limited to animal feeding and landfill.  Economic and environmental concern: Increased pressure to ensure total utilisation.  BSG is a lignocellulosic material containing about 17% cellulose, 28% noncellulosic polysaccharides such as arabinoxylans, and 28% lignin.

 Incorporation of BSG into wheat flour breads together with a range of enzymes improved the dietary fibre content of the products.  Significant potential for the exploitation and the addition of BSG in traditional Irish food products to enhance their nutritional composition and to contribute towards the population health and greater well being.  Biotechnological approach for the extraction of high value ingredients such as ferulic acid, coumaric acid and dietary fibre from waste source.

 Rich in protein (≈25%), fibre (≈ 70%) and several bioactives including antioxidants and can serve as an attractive adjunct in human nutrition.  Safe for human consumption, so real potential for developing new products that can meet full regulatory approval.  This project investigates strategies for the extraction of high value ingredients from BSG and potential application in functional foods.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

Potential Application of BSG in high value ingredients extraction and functional food development

 Incorporation of BSG into wheat flour breads together with a range of enzymes.  Probiotic fermentation of BSG to improve digestibility of fibre leading to higher levels of incorporation into a range of food products.  BSG fermentation optimization using probiotic bacteria for the development of probiotic products  Bioprocessing of BSG with a range of enzymes for the extraction of high value ingredients.  3 articles in various peer-reviewed journals.  Some more articles in different stages of publications.  Results were presented in various national and international conferences.

Brewers’ Spent Grain

Animal Feed

TEAM FUNDERS Dr. Amit Kumar Jaiswal, Postdoctoral Scientist Dr. Sabrina Cox, Postdoctoral Scientist Dr. Nissreen Abu-Ghannam, Principal Investigator

Production of Brewers’ spent Grain

Land Fill

This project is funded by the Irish Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine under the Food Institutional Research Measure (FIRM).

nissreen.abughannam@dit.ie


Utilisation of Edible Irish Seaweeds SUMMARY / ABSTRACT •The Atlantic cost of Ireland is one of the most productive seaweed growing areas in the world. •The Irish coast is home to more than 500 seaweed species but research has only focused on a small number (16-18) for commercial exploitation. •Ireland’s seaweed and biotechnology sector is currently worth €18 million per annum •36,000 tonnes of seaweed (wild product) are harvested per year •185 full time employees •Seaweeds are a powerhouse of natural ingredients with potent biological properties such as anti-oxidants, anti-bacterial anti-cancer and anti-diabetic. Seaweed bioactive groups are mainly polyphenols, polysaccharides, carotenoids, polyunsaturated fatty acids, proteins and peptides. • Seaweed drying is the most typical approach that seaweed processors follow in Ireland for purposes of preservation, enhancing shelf-life and convenience. However, the drying procedures as currently applied significantly compromises the biological content and activity of seaweeds. •This research has focused on brown seaweeds due to their high antioxidant activity in comparison with other seaweed species. In particular the species Himanthalia elongata or sea Spaghetti was studies with respect to: bioactivity content, optimization of the drying process to retain maximum bioactivity and avenues for incorporation in typical Irish food products with a view to enhance the functional and nutraceutical characteristic of such products.

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL •The addition of H. elongata into bakery and meat products in the development of functional foods opens up new potential for seaweed utilisation. •Increased levels of dietary fiber and antioxidant capacity were observed for bakery and meat products upon the incorporation of up to a maximum of 40% of seaweeds. •Extension in shelf-life and reduction in lipid oxidation for meat products incorporated with seaweeds. •The developed products scored high levels of sensory acceptability. • Reduction in the Glycemic index of bread products upon the incorporation of seaweeds. •Significant potential for the exploitation and the addition of seaweeds in traditional Irish products to enhance their nutritional image and to contribute towards the population health and well being. •The drying procedures as applied by seaweed producers in Ireland have been reviewed and optimized and new time and temperature conditions have been developed to maximize the retention of biological activities in seaweeds.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE •H. elongata contains high levels of biological activity of significant importance to health including high fibre content. • Drying methods were optimized in this research to maximize the retention of biological activities as drying significantly reduces the potency of seaweed biological properties.

Figure 2 Seaweeds incorporated in bakery products

•Dried and rehydrated seaweeds were incorporated into commonly consumed convenience products to enhance their nutraceutical properties (dietary fibre and antioxidants), this included bakery and meat products.

TEAM / FUNDERS Dr. Nissreen Abu-Ghannam (Principle Investigator, research supervisor) Dr. Sabrina Cox (Postdoctoral researcher) Duileasc

Nori

Himanthalia elongata

Carrageen Moss

Alaria

Kelp Laminaria digitata

The researchers acknowledge funding from the Dublin Institute of Technology under the ABBEST Programme.

School of Food Science and Environmental Health, College of Sciences and Health

Figure 1 Typical Irish seaweed species

nissreen.abughannam@dit.ie


Irish Phytochemical Food Network SUMMARY/ABSTRACT Fruit and Vegetables are an important component of a healthy diet and if consumed in sufficient amounts could help prevent major diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers. According to the World Health Report 2002, low fruit and vegetable intake is estimated to cause about 31% of ischemic heart disease and 11% of stroke worldwide. Overall, it is estimated that up to 2.7 million lives could potentially be saved if fruit and vegetable consumption was sufficiently increased Phytochemicals are plant or fruit derived chemical compounds which can have a beneficial effect on human health. Phytochemicals are present in virtually all of the fruits and vegetables we eat, so it is quite easy for most people to include them in their diet. Examples of important Phytochemicals are Isothiocyanates in cruciferous vegetables; Polyacetylenes in carrots and Flavanols in onions. There are thousands of known phytochemicals, however, only a small fraction has been studied closely. diet rich in Phytochemicals is considered to help prevent many health conditions including cancer, heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE The Apiaceae, such as Carrots contain a group of phytochemicals known as Carotenoids, particularly beta-carotene which is a precursor of Vitamin A, which is needed to form the molecule retinal. Retinal reacts with light and sends signals from the eye to the brain. Strawberries, Raspberries and other berries contain Ellagic acid, a phenolic acid, which is being heavily studied due to its potential anti-cancer and antimutagenic abilities.

The photochemical Lycopene helps give Tomatoes and Red Peppers their red colour. Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant and has been linked with anti-cancer properties. Interestingly non red vegetables such as Asparagus, Basil and Parsley also contain high amounts of Lycopene.

Glucosinolates are a group of phytochemicals which are responsible for the characteristic flavour of Broccoli, Cabbage, Brussel Sprouts and Kale. Research indicates that glucosinolates and their derivatives may have potential in fighting certain cancers. Alliums such as Onions, Leeks and Spring Onions contain a group of phytochemicals called allyl sulfides, which may stimulate enzymes to help your body expel harmful chemicals.

Two of the major phytochemicals found in Lettuce are chicoric acid and chlorogenic acid. Studies on obese mice have shown that chlorogenic acid improved body weight and obesity related hormone levels. Other dietary sources of chlorogenic acis include Apples, berries and Aubergine.

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL The interaction between phytochemicals and other compounds in food is not well understood, but it is unlikely that any single compound offers the best health outcome. A balanced diet that includes a minimum of 400 g of fruits and vegetables per day (excluding potatoes and other starchy tubers) is recommended by FAO/WHO for the prevention of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity. The Irish Phytochemical Food Network was set up in 2008 to study phytochemicals in Irish grown vegetables and fruit “from farm to fork�. It is made up of researchers from Teagasc, NUI Galway, UCD, UCL, DIT and UCC. For more information please log on to www.IPFN.ie

PARTNERS

FUNDERS Funding provided under the NDP, through the FIRM, administered by the Department of Agriculture Food & the Marine.

Contact Details: catherine.barryryan@dit.ie (01) 4024458 & www.ipfn.ie


WHEYSAN SUMMARY

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

Whey is the residual waste liquid fraction that is obtained during the production of cheese. Its high protein and lactose content makes its disposal a significant pollution problem.

 The most successful whey derivatives will be fully characterized. A thorough study on the analytical methods for the determination of antimicrobial and antioxidant activity of whey and its derivatives will be performed.

Postharvest disinfection of fruits and vegetables (F&V) is crucial for extending the market time of the produce, and chlorine is the sanitizer most widely used. However, the likely formation of carcinogenic chlorinated compounds in water has called into question chlorine application, which is already banned in several EU countries. Recent in-house studies have shown that whey and its derivatives have promising perspectives as natural preservatives for disinfection of F&V (Ahmed et al., 2011a, b; 2012a, b, 2013).

 A protocol for whey processing will be established to reduce the heterogeneity among the samples.

The project WHEYSAN aims to develop new technologies for the decontamination of whole and fresh-cut F&V and for the processing of whey to achieve a profitable by-product with sanitizing properties.

 In order to make real the industrial exploitation of the new disinfection strategy, a commercial formula containing the whey derivatives will be developed.  The laboratory results will be scaled-up and the most efficient conditions for disinfection of whole and fresh-cut F&V will be defined at pilot and industrial scales.  The project WHEYSAN will provide two major benefits for the participant SMEs: a new source of revenue from the whey-based sanitizing formula, and an increased turnover from the commercialization of chlorine-free F&V in the organic market.

Microbial enumeration of whey raw whey- frozen untreated

raw whey- frozen treated at 65 C for 30 min

6 5

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE  Among the two whey samples, the sample 1 had higher protein content and therefore higher antioxidant activity.  The initial microbial loads of the whey samples were comparatively high (~ 5 Log cfu/g).  Heat treatment was found to be effective to reduce the microbial loads of the whey samples.  Among the various temperature and time that have been applied to the whey samples, the conventional „low-temperature-long-time‟ (LTLT) pasteurization technique, i.e. at 65°C for 30 mins was found to be the most efficient one to heat treat the whey samples.

Log cfu/g

4 3 2 1 0 Mesophilic bacteria

Psychrotrophic bacteria

LAB

Yeast & Moulds

PARTNERS

 Freezing increased the antioxidant activity of the whey samples compared to chilling but not significantly (p>0.05).  Freeze-drying effected the antioxidant activity of the whey samples negatively (p<0.05). WHEYSAN is a 2-year R&D project funded by the Seventh Framework Programme of the EC under the “Research for SMEs” sub-programme. This project started in November 2012 and will end in October 2014.

E-mail: catherine.barryryan@dit.ie / lubna.ahmed@dit.ie Tel: +353 (0) 1 402 - 4458 / 4442


Fresh-Pack SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

Globally, there is an increase in the number of outbreaks of foodborne illness associated with fresh produce, in particular ready-to-eat fruit and vegetables. It is critical that effective decontamination steps are in place to ensure consumer protection and confidence in such healthy produce. This project aims to develop a pre-commercial packaging prototype for continuous In-Package decontamination of fresh produce. Specifically this project will optimise the packaging properties of novel in-package plasma discharge system to provide the desired safety and shelf-life profiles.

The goal of the proposed work is to optimise and validate this novel approach to ensure the thermal and structural stability of the food packaging materials currently used in the food industry during and after plasma sterilisation treatments, as well as maintain the barrier properties of these materials, which are crucial aspects for food commercialisation .

Cold plasma technology is an emerging, green process offering many potential applications for food packaging. While it was originally developed to increase surface energy of polymers enhancing adhesion and printability, it has recently emerged as a powerful tool for surface sterilization of both foodstuffs and food packaging materials. Surface treatments of packaging can serve various purposes including surface functionalization, surface cleaning or etching, and surface deposition. Surface functionalization can be used additionally to enhance barrier characteristics of polymers and to impart polymers with certain antimicrobial properties.

Once sterilisation treatments on food packaging will be finished, the developed plasma system prototype will be tested on novel green biodegradable materials, which are usually poor in barrier properties, to functionalise their surfaces and reduce mass transfer between the food and the packaging. Improving the safety and shelf life of packaged foodstuffs will avoid industry to make two sterilisation treatments and will prevent from recontamination of packaged food. Food packaging surface Before plasma treatment

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Ability to treat large surface area packaging under rapid conditions. Tested in both traditional commercial food packaging materials (LDPE, PET, PP, Cryovac) and novel green materials (PLA, active films). Slight changes in surface roughness not affecting bulk properties. Stability of thermal and structural properties of all food packaging materials using times and voltages used for in-pack sterilisation of fresh produce. Barrier properties of food packaging materials (Migration, oxygen and water vapour permeability) under EU legal limits. Migration (Cryovac)

After plasma treatment

EU limit=10 mg/dm2

10.0

Overall Migration (mg/dm2)

9.0 8.0 7.0 6.0 5.0 4.0 3.0 2.0 1.0 0.0 Control

40kV

50kV

Dist. Water

Control

40kV

50kV

Control

40kV

3% Acetic Acid

50kV

Control

10% Ethanol

40kV

50kV

Increase in surface roughness after plasma treatment (figure above) was obtained in all tested food packaging materials. This fact could not only modify barrier properties but also make them more susceptible of surface functionalisation.

95% Ethanol

Water Vapour Transmission Rate (Cryovac) WVTR (g /m2.24 hr @10 C and 85% RH)

10 9 8 7

TEAM FUNDERS

6 5 4 3 2 40kv

50kv

1

Food Institutional Research Measure (FIRM)

0 0

1

2

3

4

5

Treatment time (min)

Contact Details: pjcullen@dit.ie


KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL

SUMMARY / ABSTRACT Current cleaning validation techniques are largely based on laborious, time consuming and expensive swab sampling techniques, whereby swabs of the cleaned surface are taken and then tested using HPLC techniques in the laboratory. Equipment can be down for days, which poses enormous economic burden in the pharmaceutical industry. The aim of the OPTICLEAN project is to produce an effective portable optical system for cleaning verification in the pharmaceutical industry.

The results have shown the feasibility of such technology to be used to provide accurate information in real-time, facilitating the development of a custom-made version of the technology that will be trialed in the pharmaceutical industry as a cleaning validation tool. A portable imaging device will be designed and built and tested on a commonly used APIs and detergents in real pharmaceutical environments in order to validate its effectiveness and reliability. The impact of the uptake of the technology will enable rapid turn-around times, increased through-put and profitability in EU pharmaceutical plants, as well as increased safety standards, which are paramount to safeguarding the health and safety of EU citizens.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Low limits of detection achieved ≈ 1μg Compound identification and quantification Direct measurement Rapid speed of analysis Non-contact λ

Image at λk

Y Spectrum of pixel xiyj

Absorbance

X

http://www.opticlean-fp7.eu/ TEAM / FUNDERS

λ (nm)

Caffeine/lactose blend 60 μg/cm2

10 μg/cm2

1 μg/cm2

The RTD providers are Dublin Institute of Technology DIT (Ireland) VTT Research Centre of Finland (Finland) Innovació i Recerca Industrial i Sostenible IRIS (Spain) The SMEs involved in the project are Innopharma Labs (Ireland) Coordinator Merrion Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (Ireland) Manufacturas Serviplast. S.A. (Spain)

OPTICLEAN is a 2-year R&D project funded by the Seventh Framework Programme of the EC under the “Research for SMEs” sub-programme. This project started in November 2011 and will end in October 2013

Kuava Ltd. (Finland) Rikola Ltd. (Finland)

Contact details: pjcullen@dit.ie


SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

Particles and granules play a key role in process efficacy and final product quality for numerous industries including pharmaceuticals, food, nutritionals and cosmetics. PARTICLE-PRO aims to develop a system that is a hybrid of imaging-based physical characterization and NIR-Chemical Imaging technologies. Particles and granules play a key role in process efficacy and final product quality for industries such as pharmaceuticals, food, nutritionals and cosmetics.

PARTICLE-PRO technology will provide significantly advance pharmaceutical manufacturing control and assure greater product control and patient safety.

The benefits for the pharmaceutical sector are increased granulation process control, increased process quality, increased batch yields, reduced downtime, reduced investigations due to deviation investigations, reduced risk of non-supply of products, greater assurance for regulatory bodies. All in all, PARTICLE-PRO aims at assessing several characteristics in real time.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Technology prototypes have been developed to characterise the size and shape distributions of granules A multi-point NIR prototype have been developed to provide chemical mapping of the granules Ingredient identification and quantification is possible with multi-point “quasi” imaging techniques

Particle morphology and active content uniformity are critical parameters governing process efficacy and final product acceptance. The development of one hybrid technology that is capable of assessing these characteristics in real time will significantly advance pharmaceutical manufacturing control and assure greater product control and patient safety.

TEAM FUNDERS PARTICLEPRO is a 2-year R&D project funded by the Seventh Framework Programme of the EC under the “Research for SMEs” sub-programme.

pjcullen@dit.ie


SUMMARY

The fresh-cut industry is heavily dependent on

chlorine as one of the most effective sanitizers to assure the safety of their produce. However, in light of concerns about the environmental and health risks associated with the formation of carcinogenic disinfection by-products, there is increasing pressure on the industry to eliminate chlorine from the disinfection process. The SAFE-BAG project aims at developing a novel continuous in-pack decontamination system for fresh-cut produce. Plasma (an energetic ionized gas) is widely used for industrial materials processing, and has recently shown promise as a decontamination tool for food contact surfaces.

POTENTIAL The goal of the proposed work is to optimize and validate this novel approach to reduce pathogens in fresh produce while extending shelf-life and maintaining quality. Once ready, the SAFE-BAG system will be extensively tested at fresh fruit and vegetable processing facilities. The performance of the prototype will be validated and the treated produce analysed to ensure its safety and to categorize it in terms of product quality and shelf-life. The developers of SAFE-BAG are committed to making this system affordable, robust and easy to maintain. Achieving this will make the technology accessible to the hundreds of European fresh-cut SMEs.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Rapid microbial inactivation (seconds) Significant shelf –life extensions of food Retention of product quality Plastic or glass packaging No chemical residues Energy efficient technology

http://www.safebag-fp7.eu

TEAM / FUNDERS The SME Associations involved in the project are Food Industry Association of Austria (Austria) Federation of the Food & Drink Industries of the Czech Republic (Czech Republic) Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenıa – Chamber of Agrıcultural and Food Enterprıses (Slovenia) Union of Dairy, Beef, Food Industrialists and Producers of Turkey (Turkey) Un-treated

Treated

The SMEs involved in the project are OSV Srl (Italy) Nature’s Best (Ireland) Citrus Levante (Spain) Fullwell Mill Foods (United Kingdom) The RTD providers are Dublin Institute of Technology (Ireland)

Listeria Un-treated

Listeria treated

Dublin City University (Ireland) Innovació i Recerca Industrial i Sostenible (Spain) SAFE-BAG is 3 year R&D project funded by the Seventh Framework Programme of the EC under the “Research for SME Associations” sub-programme. grant agreement nº 285820

Contact Details: pjcullen@dit.ie or paula.bourke@dit.ie


Sustainable Environmental, Water & Sanitation Tech. RESEARCH INTERESTS

DTC CURRENT RESEARCH

Strategic Objective: The Development Technology in the Community (DTC) Research Group was established to develop and promote innovations in Sustainable Environmental, Water and Sanitation Technologies. DTC Research & Advisory Services: 

Pilot Demonstration Projects

Innovations in Appropriate Technology

Rainwater Harvesting

Zero Discharge Wastewater Treatment (WWT) Systems

Low cost water quality testing

Zero Discharge WWT Systems – Research studies carried out by DTC Research Group in the last ten years have shown the appropriateness of willow bed facilities as a polishing unit for small scale community reed beds. Our design and sizing has evolved over this period to achieve zero discharge. Present and future studies are focused on developing reed bed willow bed systems for new build and retro fit septic tanks. Sustainable Water Infrastructure – Current research is focused on innovations in rainwater harvesting design to improve efficiencies and reduce system costs for domestic, agricultural, industrial and school applications. Technology Transfer– DTC are currently partnering with product developers in Bolivia and the UK to develop working aids, guidelines and methodological toolboxes for innovative technology transfer programs in developing countries..

Training Courses & Applied Research Programs

Research Partners: DTC provides technical advisory and research services to the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government (DOEHLG), Local Authorities, International Non Government Organisations, Private Business, Community Based Organisations and Educational Institutions.

Innovations in Low Cost Water Quality Testing – DTC are currently assessing low cost water quality methodologies for use in developed & developing countries.

RAINWATER HARVESTING SIERRA LEONE DTC ENVIRONMENTAL Rainwater Harvesting System

RESOURCE CENTRE 1

Community Managed Water Source

1.

Roof surface

2.

Rainwater Filter

3.

Rainwater Storage Tank

4.

Supply Management System

5.

Marking & Labelling

6.

Overflow to surface water drainage

5 4

2

3

DTC / EMAS WORKSHOP 2011

ZERO DISCHARGE

TECHNOLOGY INNOVATIONS

6 6

WASTEWATER TREATMENT Training / Water Testing

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS Innovation in Rainwater Harvesting Design • Pilot Rainwater Harvesting Study 2005 – 2009, DOEHLG School

DTC research group aims to develop and promote a decentralized system of water supply and sanitation which encourages self reliance within communities in both developed and developing countries.

• Rainwater Harvesting Study 2009-2012, DOEHLG Zero Discharge Wastewater Treatment Systems

CONTACT DETAILS

• Reed Bed WWT System, 1996-2002, - Fingal Co. Co. • Hybrid Reed Willow Bed WWT System, 2007-2012 - South Dublin CoCo

DTC Research Group, School of Civil & Building Services Engineering Dr. Liam McCarton,

email: liam.mccarton@dit.ie

• Sierra Leone , 2010-2012 – EU Funded Program

Dr. Sean O’Hogain,

email: sean.ohogain@dit.ie

• Water, Wastewater, Solar, Wind, Pump technology, 2011, EMAS, Bolivia,

Catriona Walsh,

email: catriona.walsh@dit.ie

• Low Cost Pump Design , 2012 CANZEE, UK

Anna Reid,

email: anna.reid@dit.ie

Appropriate Technology

Training Course: TECSPAR Technology Transfer Project, 2005-2008 EU Alfa Programme in association with Polytechnic University of Catalunya, University of Padua, University of Medellin, University of San Luis Potosi, and University of Conception..

Tel: 087-772 2225

Dr. John Turner, email: john.turner@dit.ie Head of School of Civil & Building Services Engineering

www.dit.ie/dtc


Household Water Management in Sierra Leone Abstract The Health sector in Sierra Leone is characterised by a high incidence of water borne, water deficit and vector borne diseases. Access to an improved water source is estimated at 52% nationally. The Development Technology Centre (DTC) through the Department. Of Civil & Building Services Engineering, Dublin Institute of Technology has carried out a study of household water management strategies adopted by rural and urban communities in Sierra Leone. The study involved a comprehensive review of existing data collated by Government Agencies & National & International NGO’s. To complement the existing information available, household surveys were carried out by Green Scenery, a National NGO, using local school teachers in selected districts. The survey teams used observational techniques and structured and semi structured interviews, together with focus group discussions. Information was collated on household characteristics, access to water, hygiene and sanitation, economic activities, rainwater harvesting and household water treatment. Preliminary results of this study are presented in this poster.

Water & Sanitation Key Indicators Access to Improved Drinking Water Source

Use of Improved Sanitation Facility

Both Access to Improved Water & Use of Adequate Sanitation

National

52%

34%

Urban

85%

64%

57%

4.5%

Rural

32%

17%

10%

5%

4.75%

50 40 Eastern Province Northern province Southern Province Western Area

30 20%

SIERRA LEONE

Household Water Treatment

10

Population 6.3 million

0

The country is emerging from a 10 year civil war & ranks last in the Global Human Development Index Average life expectancy 42 yrs

SOURCE WATER QUALITY Bacteriological Test, E.coli content for 100ml of water

Overview of Freetown water supply • Demand exceeds supply by 50% • Typical Household Water costs 25% of total monthly earnings

Access to Mains Water Supply Dry Season 53%

• Strong community involvement in water and sanitation infrastructure management.

Wet Season 42%

Household Water Treatment: Domestic water rarely boiled (only 1.8% boil water) • 15% use cloth filter at home comprising fabric purchased in market ($0.65)

FREETOWN HOUSEHOLD WATER MANAGEMENT Alternative Water Sources:

Typical bacteriological water quality in collection vessels at source & storage vessel at household shows that contamination occurs after collection from point of source

• Unprotected Wells and Bore Holes • Springs: common in the hills of eastern Freetown.

Ecoli content for 100ml of water

• Local private networks / rivers / swamps

container at water source

• Rainwater - prioritised as principle water source in Wet Season

0 Safe 1-10 Low

CONTACT DETAILS Dr. Liam McCarton,

email: liam.mccarton@dit.ie

Dr. Sean O’Hogain,

email: sean.ohogain@dit.ie

Catriona Walsh,

email: catriona.walsh@dit.ie

Anna Reid,

email: anna.reid@dit.ie

>50 High 0%

20%

40%

Tel: 087-772 2225

Dr. John Turner, email: john.turner@dit.ie Head of School of Civil & Building Services Engineering

www.dit.ie/dtc

11-50 Moderate

container at household 60%

80%

100%


Selected Health Informatics Research EHRland PROJECT The HIQA-funded EHRland project was a three-year €374k research and development project. The EHRland project team investigated the use of ISO standard EN13606 electronic health record communication (EHRcom) as the basis for development of a national electronic health record system for Ireland. Electronic patient record systems have traditionally been designed and developed by informatics professionals while clinical experts have been somewhat sidelined after the initial analysis stage of the development cycle. The EHRcom architecture employs a “two-level” approach to modeling the content of health records which is expected to allow clinicians to take control of the shaping of the EHR systems of the future. This approach also allows domain experts to continue to improve the structure and quality of the information that is exchanged when an electronic health record is exchanged between health organizations. The EHRland project team focused on two shared care scenarios. Health assessment among community nursing professionals for older people and EHR transfer that accompanies diabetes screening between GPs and hospitals. Some of the technical challenges that are currently being investigated include identification of patients, health professionals, access to the EHR , the use of two level models with legacy information systems, the use of terminology systems to support semantic interoperability and the assignment of globally unique identifiers to shared health information

TWO LEVEL MODELS AND CLINICAL TERMINOLOGY The developers of recent Electronic Health Record (EHR) standards such as CEN EN13606 and HL7 version 3 aim to enable the communicating parties to deliver high quality health data and share patient health information. A key innovation of these standards is a progression from the traditional clinical information modelling method to the more detailed, context specific and more tightly-constrained „twolevel‟ based modelling approach containing a reference model (level 1) and archetypes (level 2). A term-binding mechanism allows standard codes from clinical terminologies to be linked with data specified by archetypes, and this leads to the idea of a “Terminological Shadow” to enhance this integration. This project aims to demonstrate that the construction of these novel artefacts, known as “Shadows” of archetypes, will improve the archetype modelling process and provide a guide for further development of archetypes to cover and convey more semantically accurate clinical meanings.

USING TWO LEVEL MODELS FOR HEALTH DATA QUALITY ASSESSMENT With the ongoing global development of tele-healthcare and other connected health solutions, there is a requirement for practical methods of assessing the data quality of health information that originates in medical devices and biomedical sensors. This is because clinicians and other health information consumers must be able to trust information that is shared with them. If a medical device produces health information that is intended for shared electronic health records, then it must be of high quality and the quality information must also be known. This project a spin-off of the EHRland project, investigated quantitative data quality analysis techniques that are based on two-level models for health information, focusing in particular on temporal and completeness data quality dimensions. EHR communication EPR

Automated data qualiity assessment Based on archetypes (detailed clinical models)

The development of the Shadow approach also involves the investigation and evaluation of a tf-idf based algorithm and a set of quantitative studies of its performance. The research includes an investigation of an automatic mapping algorithm and an assessment of the performance of this algorithm by comparing the results with predefined mappings that were manually created by healthcare experts. A key contribution of the work is the application of the Shadow approach to the largest archetype repository and the analysis of the clinical concept coverage of the archetypes in the repository. The results of the coverage show that the archetype modelling in this repository does not cover all clinical areas equally. This work attempts to show the distribution of clinical concepts in the archetype repository to provide guidance for archetype modellers. The coverage results have revealed patterns that emerge in the relationship between archetypes and the mapped SNOMED-CT concepts. The project also demonstrates that Shadows can be used to compare archetypes. An implementation of the Shadow utility illustrates the ability to identify archetypes that are semantically similar.

Contact Details: damon.berry@dit.ie ted.burke@dit.ie


Biosignal Assistive Tech. Research ABOUT tPOT The tPOT Research Group is part of the Dublin Institute of Technology's School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering. The group is based in the Focas Institute, adjacent to DIT's Kevin St campus. The group was established in May 2007, consolidating its members' ongoing research into technology that interacts with humans or with the human body - what we call People Oriented Technology (tPOT). The group's activities include research and teaching in biomedical signal engineering, human-machine interfaces, assistive technology and health informatics.

ELECTROLARYNX PROJECT The objective of this project is to investigate new methods for controlling assistive technology devices, focusing on the electrolarynx. How we interact with electronic devices has changed significantly in the last few years. The availability of new lowcost sensors (e.g. microchip accelerometers and gyroscopes) is driving innovation in the area of human-machine interaction, such as in mobile phones, laptops and games consoles. There is exciting potential for similar innovation in the control of assistive technology devices, for example through automated analysis of body movements or biomedical signals. Developments of this type could profoundly affect the quality of life of people with disabilities. A specific practical objective of this project is to improve upon the conventional electro-larynx device that is used by many people who have undergone a laryngectomy. In the same way that the vibrations normally produced by the human larynx are spectrally shaped by the vocal tract, those produced by the electro-larynx are shaped by the lips, tongue and other speech organs into recognisable speech sounds. However, the subtle pitch and amplitude control of the human larynx is not reproduced by a conventional hand-operated electro-larynx. The aim of this project is to improve upon existing designs by creating a hands-free device that allows improved pitch and amplitude control to produce more natural sounding speech.

INTEGRATION OF OF BIOELECTRICAL & BIOMECHANICAL SIGNALS FOR REHABILITATION The objective of this project is to investigate the integration of biomechanical and bioelectrical measurements from the human body for applications in rehabilitation and assistive technology. In particular, this project aims to produce systems that facilitate communication and control by people with physical disabilities, including for example intelligent interfaces for controlling prostheses. One of the major practical goals of this project is to develop a system that harnesses the electrooculogram (EOG) as a channel of communication and control. The EOG is a biopotential measured from points on the surface of the skin around the eyes. It arises due to a standing potential which exists between the cornea and retina of the eyeball and can be used to measure eye movements. This signal offers some advantages over other methods of eye-tracking, but there are also several key challenges associated with EOG-based communication systems, including time-varying sensitivity and offset of the signal as well as the fact that DC-coupled amplifiers must typically be used to record it. The work being undertaken in this project builds on similar systems developed previously by other members of the tPOT group. For people with the most profound physical disabilities, voluntary movement (even of the eyes) is impaired to such a degree that communication of any kind becomes almost impossible. In such cases, a so-called brain-computer interface (BCI) may provide the only means of expression. BCI systems measure brain activity directly, translating it into a signal or signals that can control a computer, prosthesis or other device. A long term goal of this project is to develop a non-invasive BCI system based on the electroencephalogram (EEG).

APPLICATION OF INEXPENSIVE SENSORS IN ASSISTIVE TECH. Measurement and analysis of biological signals can provide remarkable insight into the workings of the human body, aid diagnosis of medical disorders and even facilitate communication by people with profound physical disabilities. It is on applications of the latter type that this project is primarily focused. Of course, for several decades, the use of biomedical signals in clinical applications has been widespread. However, recent advances in instrumentation technology have made it more practical (and economical) for biomedical signals to be used in applications that improve the daily lives of people with disabilities, such as augmentative and alternative communication systems. The objective of this project is to use innovative measurement systems in the development of assistive technology. The initial prototype that is currently under development is a lightweight, wireless and low-cost sensor for the measurement of biomechanical and bioelectrical signals originating from the human body. These types of signals are measured in many clinical applications, but can also be harnessed as a channel of communication and control for people with profound physical disabilities. T Among the biomechanical signals which are under investigation in this project is the mechanomyogram which records the physical vibrations emanating from working muscles. The availability in recent years of tiny integrated circuit accelerometers now provides a convenient means of measuring this signal. Furthermore, sensors of this type have many other potential applications in assistive technology.

Contact Details damon.berry@dit.ie ted.burke@dit.ie


Focas Research Institute CORE LABORATORIES Focas now houses an unrivalled suite of instrumentation for spectroscopic (UV to far IR) characterisation and imaging (Raman, FTIR) and optical (Confocal fluorescence), scanning probe (AFM, conductive AFM) and electron microscopy (SEM, WDX, EDX, variable pressure/cryo SEM, TEM).

The Focas Research Institute, DIT, (www.focas.dit.ie) was established under the Higher Education Authority Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions, Cycle 1 (1999-2001), co-funded by the EU. The facility addresses the common needs of research activities in Science and Engineering. The venture is founded on established expertise within the Institute and aims to consolidate and develop this expertise, while nurturing developing research activities within the DIT. Thus it promotes interdisciplinary collaborations within the Institute and with other national and international bodies, and provides a support service for national industry. The 3200m2 facility, to the rear of the DIT Kevin Street site in the heart of Dublin, provides state of the art core laboratory support in microscopy and spectroscopy for a range of research groups and activities. The facilities were consolidated under PRTLI Cycle 4 (2007-2013), co-funded by the EU Regional Development Fund, through the Integrated NanoScience Platform for Ireland (www.inspirenano.ie) and the National Biophotonics and Imaging Platform, Ireland, (www.nbipireland.ie) and are incorporated as a pilot site in the EuroBioImaging programme (www.eurobioimaging.eu).

RESEARCH Focas contributes strongly to the development of self-sustaining research teams in a number of strategic areas, such as Bio and Nano technologies. Recent notable research outputs include novel technologies for cervical cancer screening and antibacterial surface coatings It furthermore underpins postgraduate research as well as undergraduate project work and undergraduate and postgraduate course curriculum development.

16 PhD

Number of Graduates

14

The Focas Research Institute is a one-stop-shop for characterisation of materials and processes and operates an open access policy with expert technical and scientific support.

12 10 8 6 4 2

Full details of available facilities are available at www.dit.ie/focas and at www.attlas.ie/

0 2000

2002

2004

2006

Year

Investing in Your Future

Hugh.Byrne@dit.ie

2008

2010

2012


Inspire BioNanoScience

SUMMARY Funded under the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) Ctcle 4 (2007-2013), with support from the EU Structural Fund, the Integrated NanoSciences Platform of Ireland (INSPIRE) networks nanoscience and nanotechnology research activity nationally, which will result in building collaborations across the nanoscience community nationally, leveraging existing capabilities and elevating the national activity to be in a position of leading internationally. The aims of INSPIRE are: Creation of a shared national infrastructural capability that will fill the acknowledged gaps and be serviced effectively by trained support staff, in order to enhance the national capacity for delivering innovative research in nanoscience and nanoscale technologies.

The materials characterised will be screened for In vitro toxicology Ecotoxicologogy A variety of different exposure scenarios will be mimicked (inhalation, dermatological) using dispersed and aggregated nanoparticles. Emphasis is placed on the development of structure activity relationship as the basis of an understanding of the physico-chemical basis of Bionanointeractions.

Development of shared national nanoscience graduate programmes that will have international appeal and will enable an increase in graduate numbers aligned with stated SSTI goals. Expansion of existing institutional linkages to facilitate new collaborations, locally, regionally and nationally across institutions and across disciplines.

Focas on INSPIRE Within INSPIRE, the DIT, through NanoLab and RESC, is undertaking a threepronged interdisciplinary approach from the perspectives of nanomaterial characterisation, toxicological assessment and education. The programme is coordinated by Prof Hugh J. Hyrne, Head of the Focas Research Institute. The structure emphasises the development of higher throughput characterisation techniques, the physico-chemical characterisation/toxicology interface and the feed-through from research to education and public awareness. The platform adds capacity and capability to those existent within the Focas Institute in terms of personnel, equipment, and an extension to the Focas Institute, and interfaces them with those nationally.

The Bionanostrand is co-ordinated by Prof Fiona Lyng of the Radiation and Environmental Science Centre . DIT is a partner in the FP7 EU NanoImpactNet multidisciplinary European network on the health and environmental impact of nanomaterials

NanoEducation/Public Awareness The technical work programme will be intimately linked with the Nanoeducation programme which considers Nanoeducation at the 4th level Nanoeducation at the 3rd level Public perception and outreach

NanoMaterials A comprehensive physico- chemical characterisation of a range of technologically relevant nanomaterials will be conducted. Nanocharacterisation will utilize the techniques of AFM, TEM and SEM to characterise the identified materials in as prepared and dispersed form. Both surface area and specific surface area are of interest. Emphasis is placed on the formulation of protocols to disperse the materials. A unique aspect of this workprogramme is the effort to translate the results of the labour intensive, low throughput microscopic characterisation techniques to higher throughput methods such as light scattering, Raman and UV/vis/NIR spectroscopies. In this way routine protocols can be established to both efficiently disperse and characterise these materials.

The Nanoeducation workprogramme explores novel pedagogical methods and transfers knowledge to the DIT and INSPIRE Postgraduate Education Programme as well as the DIT Science with Nanotechnology degree programme. A number of Knowledge transfer events have specifically targeted public perception and outreach, both within DIT and the consortium. Several workshop and discussion have been organized through the Focas Institute to date. Nanotalks: Interfacing Industry, Academia and Society: December 2005 Nanotechnology: implications for human health, the environment and food safety: Nov 2007 BioNano: Inspiring Responsible Development for Society and the Environment 2009

Added materials characterization capabilities of Focas:

INSPIRE II

Horiba J-Y High Resolution Multiline Raman spectroscopic microscope with dual upright and inverted microscopes Asylum MFP-3D-Bio Atomic Force Microscope which can be fitted to the Raman instrument for simultaneous Raman and AFM measurement

In 2011, the National NanoScience Graduate School was launched, funded under PRTLI Cycle 5 (2011-2915). In the opening academic year, 20 students were enrolled nationwide

Aditional techniques addd include DLS, Zeta sizing, BET and SEM. NanoMaterials Research is co-ordinated by Dr Gordon Chambers of the School of Physics and NanoLab

Hugh.Byrne@dit.ie

Investing in Your Future


Nanolab Research Centre RESEARCH INTERESTS

TEAM

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS

Dr. Gordon Chambers lecturer in the School of Physics of DIT and consults on the implementation and societal impacts of nanotechnology to both private industry and government bodies. Research interests include nano-bio interactions, safe use of nanotech in the food sector and bio-spectroscopy for cellular tracking. Dr. Alan Casey PhD awarded by the Dublin Institute of Technology for a study entitled “Physiochemical Indicators of Single Walled Carbon Nanotube Toxicity”. Joined nanolab as research staff in 2007 research interests include, nano-bio interactions, drug screening, cellular uptake mechanisms and programmed cell death pathways. Prof. Hugh J Byrne Appointed to staff of DIT in January 1996, as lecturer in the School of Physics. Seconded as manager of FOCAS at DIT in 2000. Awarded Honorary Professorship of DIT , December 2008. Recent research activities have extended to biospectroscopy for diagnostics and biochemical analysis and nano-bio interactions.

PRTLI cycle 5, INSPIRE 2 Nanotechnology GREP , €309,000

SFI Research Frontiers Program “NanoFood” €198,000

PRTLI cycle 4 INSPIRE shared funding €4.1 million

Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).Marie-Curie Training Network Nanotoxicology and process identification €200,000

NanoTalks “ Public Perception of nanotechnology and its role in society”– December 2005 –Focas Institute.

Nanotox “ Nanotechnology: implications for human health, environment and food safety”– November 2007 – Carlton Hotel.

BioNano “Inspiring Responsible Development for Society and the Environment”– October 2009 – Carlton Hotel

Policy Documents –members of the research centre have sat on advisory panels namely the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) Nanotechnology position panel and the Irish Health and Safety Authority (HSA) working group on Nanotechnology .

Over 250 peer reviewed publications

CONTACT DETAILS Dr. Gordon Chambers

Dr. Alan Casey,

Ph: + 35314022856

Ph: +35314027932

Fax + 35314024988

Fax: +35314027901

Email: gordon.chambers@dit.ie

Email:alan.casey@dit.ie

www.dit.ie/nanolab

the


Nanolab Activities and Expertise METHOD DEVELOPMENT

GENERIC ACTIVITIES

Tracking nanoparticles using Raman Spectroscopy

NANOTOXICOLOGY •The degree to which a nano-material can have an adverse effect on human or environmental health. •It must take into consideration the physical and chemical properties of the nano-material in addition to the biological and toxic assessment

Predictive Models- Rate Equation Model

TEAM FUNDERS

www.dit.ie/nanolab


Nanolab Facilities Materials Characterisation

Biological Tracking

With the combined equipment of the Nanolab research centre and the core instrumentation of the Focas institute, Nanolab has access to and expertise in an impressive array of materials characterisation equipment. Particles size, zeta-potential, surface area, pore size analysis, electronic and atomic microscopy's are routinely performed on materials in a variety of different environments.

With the combined equipment of the Nanolab research centre and the core instrumentation of the Focas institute, Nanolab has access to and expertise in variety and biological and analytical techniques to aid in the biological tracking of materials upon instillation in biological systems.

Toxicity and Antimicrobial Screening With an internal cell bank of 30 cell lines Nanolab routinely performs large scale in vitro cytotoxicity screening with a variety of biological endpoints of materials and chemicals for both internal and external research partners. In addition a full microbiology facility has been established to assess antimicrobial properties of new novel materials Please contact us for further information.

Environmental Risk Assessment Through collaborative projects with the RESC (http://www.dit.ie/resc/) Nanolab also has the capabilities to culture and test a variety of aquatic cell lines and a multi-trophic battery of freshwater and marine test species, comprising of the Microtox速 test system and several algal, copepod, and amphipod cultures for ecotoxicity tests.

www.dit.ie/nanolab


NBIPI Summary

Research

Funded under the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) Ctcle 4 (2007-2013), with support from the EU Structural Fund, The mission of the National Biophotonics Imaging Platform is to provide an integrated national access and training infrastructure in research, education, technology development and industry collaboration for the Stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s investment in Biophotonics and Imaging. It provides a national framework to support and encourage the development of centres of expertise. The provision of adequate core technologies in advanced imaging greatly enhances the national research infrastructure. This ensures that the recent investment in research equipment and buildings translates to an increased efficiency of usage, which in turn provides a solid foundation for development of key research areas. Major objectives of the NBIP Consortium:

Within the DIT, Research in Biophotonics and Imaging bridges the Physical and Life sciences. Fluorescent microscopy and flow cytommetry is used to monitor nontargetted effects of radiation and identify associated cell signaling pathways. Spectroscopic microscopy, both infrared and Raman is employed for disease diagnostics as well as cellular analysis of the effects of radiation, nanotoxins and anticancer agents. The Biospectroscopy group collaborates with the National Maternity and the Coombe Hospitals, as well as in a number of EU projects.

To provide a structured research and training framework for Ireland's investment in advanced imaging applied to the Life Sciences (PRTLI, SFI, HRB, Wellcome Trust) To establish Graduate Training Programmes in Cell Signaling and Imaging

Fluorescence Imaging The Fluorescence Imaging Laboratory offers a wide range of flow cytometric and microscopy techniques. Microscopy lab includes light microscopes, configured for wide-ranging applications such as phase contrast, fluorescence, bright and dark field. The equipment allows 2-D and 3-D observation and study of physical, chemical and biological samples. The Zeiss LSM confocal laser scanning microscope allows blur-free, crisp images of thick specimens at various depths. In addition, a CO2 and temperature control system is available for live cell imaging.

To bridge the Physical and Life Sciences interface and, through partnership with Industry, enhance technology developments in BioPhotonics and Imaging

Focas on NBIPI The Focas Institute, DIT, provides nationally unique facilities and expertise in Spectroscopic Imaging for Diagnostic Applications to the Molecular and Cellular Imaging Core. The associated expertise is based on the collaboration, since 2000, of the Radiation and Environmental Science Centre and NanoLab Research Centre, leading to the Biospectroscopy team. The Biospectroscopy team is the only group active in the use of vibrational spectroscopy for cellular and tissue analysis within Ireland. Spectroscopic Imaging is employed to characterise (i) cell signalling (ii) disease diagnostics and progress (iii) cellular response to external agents. In all areas the workprogramme is linked to other Platform partners. The workprogramme l demonstrates the additional dimension provided by the characterisation and mapping of molecular markers. The techniques are employed to complement other Platform imaging techniques. DIT provides training and modules in microscopy and spectroscopy to the Graduate Enhancement Programme.

Partec CyFlow Cytometer provides analysis and sorting of single-cell populations. The system providing an extensive range of applications such as light-scattering properties, DNA content, cell cycle, apoptosis, as well as the measure of intracellular biochemical changes such as calcium flux and pH.

Biospectroscopy Infrared and Raman spectroscopies have been widely used in chemistry for many years for the identification of new compounds or testing of purity. Over the last decades a new field of application has appeared, utilising the techniques for disease diagnostics and cellular analysis. Through PRTLI Cycles 1 and 4, the Focas Institute has positioned itself at the forefront of research in this field, boasting 3 State of the art Raman imaging systems and two infrared microscopes allowing rapid imaging and analysis of tissues and cells, with sub cellular resolution.

NBIPI in EuroBioImaging EuroBioImaging is a large scale panEuropean research infrastructure project on the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) Roadmap. EuroBioImaging will deploy a distributed biological and biomedical imaging infrastructure in Europe in a coordinated and harmonized manner. By providing access to and training in imaging technologies, and by sharing of best practice and image data, EuroBioImaging will become an engine that will drive European innovation in imaging research and technologies.

Current research in the group is targeting the development of biospectroscopy for the diagnosis of cervical cancer and precancer, the diagnosis of spectral and biological changes in human skin with exposure to UV radiation, and the modeling of spectral response in nano- toxicology, chemo-therapeutics and radiobiology. In addition to development of the applications, the group continues to explore the fundamental understanding of the techniques themselves Investing in Your Future

NBIPI is an Associated Partner of EuroBioImaging and the facilities of NBIPI at Focas were utilised as a Proof of Concept Pilot Access Site in 2012.

Hugh.Byrne@dit.ie


Applied Electrochemistry Group (AEG) RESEARCH AREA Electrochemistry is an important branch of physical chemistry that deals with the chemical action of electricity and/or the production of electricity by chemical reactions. The Applied Electrochemistry Group of Dublin Institute of Technology carries out research in electrochemistry with special emphasis being placed on practical aspects of the subject

TECHNOLOGY A diverse range of important applications exist which include: Electroanalytical Chemistry - identifies and quantifieds chemical species for example with the development and operation of electrochemical sensors. Materials Science and Nanotechnology - involves materials performance issues such as corrosion prevention and mitigation and development of materials found in devices such electrochromic displays (which change colour upon the imposition of an electrical potential). Electrical Energy production (through operation of devices such as batteries, fuel cells and other electrochemical systems) and Solar Energy using light to produce electricity and/or to effect chemical change (through use of semiconductors and photoelectrochemistry). Surface Science such as electrodeposition and anodic film alteration (anodising of metals such as aluminium, magnesium and titanium and electropolishing).. Environmental Electrochemistry and Green Chemistry encompassing heavy metal remediation, industrial effluent control and the use of novel ionic liquids to replace hazardous chemicals in various processes. Organic and Industrial Electrochemistry (electrosynthesis) which provide a means of producing industrially important inorganic and organic chemicals. Bioelectrochemistry involves the study of electrochemical reactions in biological systems which is of great importance in medicine.

SEM Image showing nano-sized electrodeposited electrocatalysts

CURRENT PROJECTS Tribocorrosion of Cast Aluminium Alloys Electrochromic Dsiplays Using Conducting Polymers and ionic Liquids Direct Ethanol Fuel Cell Electrocatalysts Electroanalytical Method Development for Detection of Heavy Metals

SOME RECENT PUBLICATIONS Development of a Novel Humidity Sensor Based on a Polymer Silver Nanoparticle Composite, AC Power, A J Betts, JF Cassidy, ECS Transactions, 19, 181 (2009). Chemical Structure and Corrosion Behaviour of S-Phase Coatings, KL Dahm, A J Betts, PA Dearnley, Surface Engineering, 26, 4 (2010) Silver Nanoparticle Polymer Composite Based Humidity Sensor, AC Power, A J Betts, J F Cassidy, Analyst, 135, 1645 (2010).

Cyclic Sweep (Voltammogram) of Ethanol Oxidation Reaction On Platinum-Palladium Alloy Deposit Showing Increased Activation of Surface with Successive Sweeps. This reaction can be used in a Direct Ethanol Fuel Cell (DEFC)

Practical Photoelectrochemical Cell Using Non-Precious Metal Electrodes, P Enright, A J Betts, J F Cassidy, Journal of Applied Electrochemistry, 41, 345 (2011) Non Aggregated Colloidal Silver Nanoparticles for Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy A C Power, A J Betts, J F Cassidy, Analyst, 136, 2794 (2011) Characterization and Electrochromic Properties of poly(2,3,5,6-tetrafluoroaniline): Progress Towards a Transparent Conducting Polymer, Lavinia Astratine, Edmond Magner, John Cassidy,, Anthony Betts Electrochimica Acta 74 ,117 (2012),

TEAM The AEG is directed by Professor John Cassidy and Dr Tony Betts.. Current PhD postgraduate students include , Mr Daryl Fox and Ms Caoimhe Ni Neill. Recent graduates include Dr Lavinia Astratine (with Prof. Edmond Magner MSSI), Dr Aoife Power, Dr David Culliton (with Professor David Kennedy, School of Engineering), Dr Yanmei Ma and Dr Patrick Enright.

john.cassidy@dit.ie /

CONTACT DETAILS Professor John Cassidy, Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences 01-402-4779 John.Cassidy@dit.ie Dr Tony Betts, College of Sciences and Health 01-402-4781 Anthony.Betts@dit.ie

anthony.betts@dit.ie


Development of Microfluidic Fuel Cells SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

2a

2b

A fuel cell provides electrical power from a chemical reaction, Fuel cells can potentially provide clean energy for the future. Chemical reactions in the fuel cell between a catalyst material hydrogen and oxygen produces electricity and water unlike a combustion engine do not suffer from the heat losses are therefore more efficient. Hydrogen can be supplied in the form of pure hydrogen or as a hydro carbon fuel such as methanol , ethanol, diesel etc. Initial Fuel Cell Builds

A variety of different fuel cells are in existence determined mainly by the type of electrolyte used. This research is focused on Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) type fuel cells. The components of a fuel cell include an ion conducting polymer (most commonly Nafion from Dupont1) called a polymer exchange membrane which is coated on both sides with a gas discharge layer and in general a Platinum catalyst sandwiched between conductive plates with gas or liquid flow channels, a schematic of a typical Fuel cell assembly is shown in

2c

The focus of this work is to design, build test and develop microfluidic based fuel cells to gain an understanding of issues, materials and processes related with them.

2d

Power output from different designs V’ a commercial Fuel Cell

OCV output from various Fuel Cell Assemblies

Figure2: a) Various components of fuel cell and assembly b) Initial fuel cell assembly configuration c) Power V resistive load results for different FC formats d) Open Circuit Voltage output from the various assemblies.

First Micro fluidic Fuel Cell Builds: Using a direct write photolithographic and electroplating a number of different microfluidic flow plates were patterned onto soft graphite and electroplated Ni followed by evaporation gold coating to prevent corrosion. The fuel cells were built with a variety of channel width, rib with and channel height dimensions into the same fuel cell assemblies as the standard fuel cell designs. 3a

Power mW/

3b

Microfluidic flow channels on Graphite and Ni Shim

Figure1: Schematic of a basic PEMFC

Power output V resistive load for microfluidic flow plates V’s commercial and standard Fuel cell’s

3d

3c

3e

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Initial Fuel Cells: Initial work focused on the design, build and testing of standard Fuel cell form factors to develop understanding of fuel cell operation design and build. The initial fuel cells developed used gold electroplated machined mild steel and soft graphite flow plate designs with gas flow channels of 4mm wide and 2 to3 mm depth, modified from Philip Hurley’S Fuel Cell Book2, assembled with Membrane electrode Assemblies purchased from Ion Power (www.ion-power.com) and Fuel Cell etc. (www.fuelcellsetc.com). Performance of the fuel cells were compared to a commercial fuel cell from h-tec (www.htec.com). Build and Testing of these fuel cells established, base line performance, electrical test procedures and down selection of materials while also highlighting issues with assembly, testing and materials which were resolved before building and designing the microfluidic fuel cells. The components assembly and electrical test results for these fuel cells are shown in Figure. 2

OCV for µFC designs V Standard FC

Next Steps: • • • • • 1

Supervisors: Robbie O’Connor and Gerry Ryder Institute of Technology Tallaght

Effect of Channel height on OCV

Figure3: a) Goal coated micro fluidic flow plate on Graphite and Ni Shim. b) Power V Resistive Load data fro microfluidic and non microfluidic Fuel cells . c)&d) OCV and Power output comparison for Standard and Microfluidic designs d) OVV data for various different flow channel thickness.

TEAM FUNDERS Self Funded: Kevin Dooley

Box Plot of Power for µFC designs V Standard FC

Build out all micro Flow Plate designs with various flow channel thickness Automate electrical testing DEO and Analysis on operation parameters. DOE and analysis on design parameters Extend tests to include fuel efficiency and run time.

http://www2.dupont.com/FuelCells/en_US/products/nafion.html

2.

www.goodideacreative.com/fuel_cell.html


Antenna & High Frequency Research Centre KEY ACHIEVEMENTS >200 Academic Publications, 78 Journal Articles, 131 Conference Papers 1 Patent granted, 3 pending Academic Awards

The Antenna & High Frequency Research Centre specialises in the analysis, design and measurement of antennas and associated devices for wireless communications and medical applications. With more than 15 years of applied research experience and it has built an international reputation for innovative futuristic concepts and solutions to contemporary industrial challenges.

DIT Inventor Competition 2012 CST University Publication Award 2011 SFI best paper award 2009 China-Ireland International Conference on Information & Communication Technologies CST University Publication Award 2008 Best paper award 2007 CTVR Annual Plenary Meeting Best paper award 2006 Loughborough Antennas and Propagation Conference Commercial Awards

TEAM Our multi-national, multi-institutional group of researchers is directed by Prof Max Ammann in the School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering and comprises 6 students in MSc and PhD studentships as well as 5 post-doctoral researchers, in Dublin Institute of Technology and the University of Dublin, Trinity College.

DIT Hothouse Researcher Commercialisation Award 2011 DIT Hothouse Researcher Commercialisation Award 2010 DIT Hothouse Researcher Commercialisation Award 2009 2x Enterprise Ireland Industrial Technologies Commercialisation Award 2009 DIT Hothouse Researcher Commercialisation Award 2008

COMMERCIAL ACTIVITY RESEARCH INTERESTS

last 12 month

Current research themes include Multiband & Wideband Antennas for Portable Communications, Base-Stations Antennas, Medical Antennas and Antennas for Sensor Networks. Equipped with a comprehensive range of analysis methods, manufacturing equipment and a measurement laboratory, the team can rapidly expedite ideas to qualified prototypes. AHFR responds to communication technology demands for smaller antennas to provide wider bandwidths for multi-standard radio platforms, meeting requirements for new design approaches that exploit advances in modelling, materials and manufacturing innovation. AHFR partners with other academic and industrial technologists to broaden commercialisation exploitation. We endeavour to build up a research team to sustain a critical level of expertise and experience.

CONTACT DETAILS Antenna & HF Research Centre Dublin Institute of Technology Kevin St, Dublin 8 IRELAND Phone +353-1-4024716 http://ahfr.dit.ie

Dell Ltd. (Ireland), Benetel Ltd. (Ireland), Taoglas Ltd, (Taiwan), Irish Rail (Ireland), Alcatel-Lucent (International), SmartBin Ltd (Ireland), Alpha Wireless Ltd (Ireland), Amatech Ltd, (Ireland), Pantrx (Ireland).

RECENT PUBLICATIONS A. Narbudowicz, X. L. Bao, and M. J. Ammann, "Dual-band Omnidirectional Circularly Polarized Antenna", IEEE Transactions on Antennas & Propagation, vol. 61, issue 1, pp. 77-83, 01/2013. R. Solimene, G. Ruvio, A. Dellâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Aversano, A. Cuccaro, M. J. Ammann, and R. Pierri, "Detecting point-like sources of unknown frequency spectra," Progress In Electromagnetics Research B, Vol. 50, 347-364, 2013. Dumoulin, A., John, M., Ammann, M., and McEvoy, P. "Optimized Monopole and Dipole Antennas for UWB Asset Tag Location Systems", IEEE Transactions on Antennas & Propagation, vol. 60, issue 6, pp. 2896-2904, 06/2012. A. Narbudowicz, X. L. Bao, and M. J. Ammann, "Omnidirectional Circularly Polarised Microstrip Patch Antenna", Electronics Letters, vol. 48, issue 11, pp. 614-615, 05/2012. M. J. Ammann, and M. John, "ULTRA WIDE BAND ANTENNA WITH A SPLINE CURVE RADIATING ELEMENT", US Patent US8232922 (B2), 07/2012.

c

http://ahfr.dit.ie


AHFR Technology Transfer Taoglas

AirVOD

• AHFR antenna solutions for Long Term Evolution (LTE) machine-to-machine communications

• Antennas for aircraft seat mounted in-flight entertainment systems • Low powered receiver for in cabin movie, music, news broadcasts

• LTE/4G Flex Circuit Antenna • 690-940MHz and 1720-3130MHz • High Efficiency Ultra Wide-Band Antenna • 100×38×0.1mm

• WiMax communications • WiMAX 2100-4320MHz • 100mm 1.13 coaxial cable IPEX MHF(U.FL) • 31×53×0.2mm

decaWave • AHFR antennas ship with decaWave product development/evaluation boards

Sequoia / RPA

• A single AHFR antenna addresses all the multijurisdictional channel allocations • Key optimisation goal to preserve signal pulse fidelity

• RFID antenna for Leap Card integrated ticketing reader system • Deployed on Wexford Bus, Avego • Licensed for Luas, Dublin Bus, Dart / IrishRail • Increased ticket read range from 17mm to >50mm over previous solution in IrishRail gate

http://ahfr.dit.ie


KEY ACHIEVEMENTS In 2013 MiCRA will undertake 18 industry funded projects for over 20 individual companies . These projects include a mixture of Innovation Vouchers, Innovation Partnerships, Technology Centre projects and contract research.

2013: Awarded Technology Gateway status by Enterprise Ireland (2013-2017) 2013: Awarded 2 SFI funded post graduates research projects 2012: Pharmaceutical manufacturing Technology Centre (Theme 1 rapid) bacterial detection. 2012: European Union (Framework 7) Micro/Nano sensors for early cancer warning system

RESEARCH INTERESTS Microsensors for Clinical Research and Analysis (MiCRA) is a biodiagnostics Technology Gateway with active industry collaborations in the fields of medical and veterinary diagnostics, food chain analysis, environmental assessment and pharmaceutical process control . The centre's research interests are:  Point of Care (PoC) platform development

2011: Enterprise Ireland commercialisation fund Priority Animal Health Testing – Rapid on-Farm Electronic Diagnostics (BOV-ALERT)

RECENT PUBLICATIONS Baljit Singh, Calum Dickinson, Fathima Laffir and Eithne Dempsey*, Exceptional Pt Nanoparticle Decoration of Carbon Nanofibres: A Strategy to Improve the Utility of Pt and Supporting Matrix, submitted Adv. Mat 2011. Baljit Singh and Eithne Dempsey*, Methanol Electro-oxidation by Carbon Supported Cobalt and Nickel based Nanocomposites European Fuel Cell Forum, Lucerne, Switzerland June 2011.

 Fluidics  Rapid bacterial detection  In-vitro diagnostics  Electrochemistry and biosensor development  Immunoassay development for PoC and laboratory based systems  Materials development ,characterisation and analysis

Baljit Singh, Eithne Dempsey*, ‘Pt based nanocomposites for direct glucose determination’ ECS Transactions’ Electrochemical Society Transactions, 219th ECS Meeting Montreal May 2011. B. Singh, L. Murad, F. Laffir and E. Dempsey*, ‘Pt based nanocomposites (mono/bi/tri-metallic) decorated using different carbon supports for methanol electrooxidation in acidic and basic media’ Nanoscale 2011 DOI:10.1039/C1NR10273G.

The centre is supported by recently constructed state of the art facilities and equipment in ITT Dublin

TEAM

CONTACT DETAILS

Prof. Eithne Dempsey (Principal Investigator) Dr. James Hayes (Centre Manger)

The centre is open to all enquires. Should you wish to discuss a project with us or tour our facilities please contact:

Dr. Brain Seddon (Researcher)

Dr. James Hayes

Dr. Baljit Singh (Researcher)

Tel: 01 4042084

Dr Rodica Doaga (Researcher)

Email: james.hayes@ittdublin.ie

Dr. Santhosh Padmanabhan (Researcher)

Web: www.micra.ie

Dr. Pillai Krishnakumar (Researcher)

Contact Details james.hayes@ittdublin.ie


Source Pull Analysis of RF Low Noise Amplifiers M.Eng Student:

Kansheng Yang, Department of Electronic Engineering, ITT.

Supervisor:

Mr Brian Keogh, Department of Electronic Engineering, ITT.

Co Supervisor:

Professor Max Ammann, Antennas & High Frequency Research Centre, DIT.

ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL The outcomes of this M.Eng project by research include a physical circuit on FR4 PCB and a simulation model developed using Agilent ADS. Advantages of this design:

In this research project, the circuit design presented at the front end of a radio

 The potential to prolong battery life for mobile devices, while maintaining optimal noise figure properties

receiver is focused on optimizing the performance of the low noise transistor. The

 Reduced component count (cost)

goal is to optimize Noise Figure (NF) vs. Power supply current (Ids) at 2.4 GHz

 Direct antenna-transistor interface, bypassing traditional 50Ω system, further reducing noise figure

using source pull techniques. The project addresses the problem that Radio Frequency Low Noise Amplifiers have a very low efficiency in terms of power

a)

consumption. In addition, a passive Active Integrated Antenna is designed to match the interface of the low noise transistor circuit directly. This further improves noise figure and saves on costs, in terms of component count.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE A prototype built on standard FR4 PCB, based on a simulation model in Advanced

b)

Design System (ADS) is used to design the matching circuit of the transistor. The aim is to extract the reflection coefficient for minimum noise figure. The grounding system is being investigated and is found to be vital for noise reduction. The test results of the actual board are compared with the ADS simulation result. As for the actual board, all the physical connectors and components are taken into consideration. Further detailed and comprehensive simulation circuit techniques are being developed in ADS to improve the accuracy of the model. A novel Digital Tuneable Capacitor CMOS device with embedded software is being investigated at the RF input side to optimise the input impedance for minimum noise figure. This is called Source-Pull analysis.

Figure 2. Radio Frequency Front end a) Typical VS. b) Our Design

Figure 3. Stability and NF Results

An RF Anechoic Chamber in IT Tallaght, shown in figure 4, is used to test the system noise figure. For the Noise Figure Testing, the analyser is kept outside the chamber. Only cables and Device Under Test are in the chamber. In this way, external noise signals are minimized.

Figure 4. The Radio Frequency Technology Centre Anechoic Chamber

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Figure 1. Prototype

This research project is supported by the ITT Dublin President’s Research Scholarship Award Scheme 2012. Agilent ADS University Donation Programme Fijowave Ltd., Synergy Centre, ITT Dublin Enterprise Ireland Equipment Research Grant

Contact Details: Kansheng.yang@ittd.ie


Applied Intelligence Research Centre KEY ACHIEVEMENTS Data Analytics

Computational Linguistics

Members of the AIRC are involved in all aspects of academic life in DIT and beyond. Members of the centre contribute to major national and international conferences and publish their work in recognised international journals. The projects undertaken by the group are funded by major national and international funding agencies – e.g. SFI and Enterprise Ireland. The centre also has a

Security

Machine Learning

Autonomous Intelligent Agents

vibrant postgraduate student body working on a broad range of research projects – in 2013 the centre expects to produce 6 PhD graduates. The centre isalso involved in a range of commercialisation activities that seek to make the research outcomes available to Irish and international industry. For example,

RESEARCH INTERESTS The Applied Intelligence Research Centre (AIRC), a recognised R & D centre of the Dublin Institute of Technology, engages in researching the application of computational intelligence technologies to real world problems. The core competencies of the AIRC include data analytics, machine learning, language technologies, intelligent agents, and security. Examples of real world problems the AIRC have addressed involve spam filtering, sentiment analysis, dialogue management, custom search tools for language teachers, human-robot interaction, secure mobile financial transactions, engaging game characters, companion agents for mobile devices and the management and visualisation of large data collections.

in

2011

the

spin-out

company

LingleOnline

Ltd

(www.lingleonline.com) was formed based on research from the centre. Finally, the centre led the development of the pioneering and successful DIT MSc in Computing (Data Analytics) (www.comp.dit.ie/dt285).

RECENT PUBLICATIONS Lindstrom, P., B. Mac Namee, S.J. Delany, "Drift Detection Using Uncertainty Distribution Divergence", Evolving Systems, 4(1). (2013) Delany, S.J., Segata, N. & Mac Namee, B., "Profiling Instances in Noise Reduction", Knowledge-Based Systems. (2012) Schutte, N., Kelleher, J & Mac Namee, B., "Automatic Annotation of Referring Expression in Situated Dialogues", International Journal Of Computational Linguistics And Applications, 2 (1-2). (2011) Sloan, C., Mac Namee, B. & Kelleher, J.D., "Utility-Directed Goal-Oriented Action Planning: A Utility-Based Control System for Computer Game Agents", In Proceedings of the 22nd Irish Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Science. (2011) Kelleher, J.D., R.J. Ross, C. Sloan & B. Mac Namee, "The effect of occlusion on the semantics of projective spatial terms: a case study in grounding language in perception.", Cognitive Processing 12(1). (2011) Shoniregun, C.A., K. Dube, F. Mtenzi, “Electronic Healthcare Information Security”, Springer. (2010) Mtenzi, F., “Modified improvement heuristics for the Sparse Travelling Salesman Problem”, International Journal of Software Engineering and Computing. (2009)

TEAM Dr. Brian Mac Namee brian.macnamee@dit.ie

Dr. John Kelleher john.d.kelleher@dit.ie

Dr. Sarah Jane Delany Dr. Fred Mtenzi sarahjane.delany@dit.ie fredrick.mtenzi@dit.ie

www.comp.dit.ie/aigroup

Dr. Robert Ross robert.ross@dit.ie Dr. Pierpaolo Dondio pierpaolo.dondio@dit.ie


Security Research RESEARCH INTERESTS Security issues in e-Healthcare (such as development of anonymised algorithms, security metrics for measuring and improving the security posture of e-Healthcare systems) Security in Mobile Ad Hoc Network which are energy aware.

CURRENT RESEARCH Development of a Cyber Range or Hacker Space for educating the next generation of Cyber Security professionals. Developing a User Awareness Cyber Security Training Toolkit for DIT â&#x20AC;&#x201C;

Cyber security auditing and metrics, and secure application of mobile devices in to health care.

Funded by the Teaching and learning Centre.

Online evidence and investigations

Secure mobile payment modes in low-end mobile devices and their

Design of new algorithms for Anonymisation of sensitive data in order to increase its utility. Real world application e-Healthcare Data. Metrics design and Testbed development for enhancing Predictive Protection in Cyber security.

mobile application development . Undertaking Security Audit at Tanzania Industrial Research and Development Organization (TIRDO) in order to improve the security posture of the companies web sites in Tanzania

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS Workshops Hosted: The International Workshop in e-Healthcare Information Security (e-HISec 2011) The International Workshop in Ubiquitous Computing Security Issues (UCSI 2012). Publications: The International Journal of e-Healthcare Information Systems (IJe-HIS) http:/www.infonomics-society.org/IJe-HIS/ Electronic Healthcare Information Security, 2010, Electronic Healthcare Information Security, Advances in Information Security, Vol. 53 Shoniregun, Charles A., Dube, Kudakwashe, Mtenzi, Fredrick

CONTACT DETAILS Dr. Fredrick Japhet Mtenzi School of Computing Dublin Institute of Technology Kevin Street, Dublin 8, Ireland Email: Fredrick.Mtenzi@dit.ie Web Page: www.comp.dit.ie/fmtenzi


Text Analytics Technology Transfer PROBLEM / MARKET NEED

leveraging the semi-structured nature of language, into a structured

The rapid growth of the Internet and the emergence of social media and user

Applications and business needs where text analytics has a role to play

generated content pose exciting new opportunities and challenges to

include: customer segmentation; brand, product and reputation

businesses. The opportunities arise through the incredible data resources and

management; voice of the customer and customer experience management;

mass communication technologies that are now available: businesses have the

risk management and fraud detection; and online commerce including

opportunity to both learn more about their customersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; needs and opinions and to

shopping and price intelligence.

representation that standard data analytics techniques can then use.

sell to a truly global market through targeted advertising. Although the Internet and social media are inherently multimedia, language, in the form of unstructured text, is the fabric that gives structure and meaning to this wealth of information.

Consequently,

for

businesses

to

take

advantage

of

the

PREFERRED ROUTE TO COMMERCIALISATION

opportunities that the internet and social media revolution provides they must be

The AIRC has a history in commercial research with the typical

able to analyse unstructured text on a massive scale and across the range of

commercialisation routes being either through collaborative research projects

forms and languages that it appears in, including emails, web pages, tweets,

with industrial partners, through enterprise and/or exchequer funded

product descriptions, newspaper stories, social media, and scientific articles.

Ph D s , o r th r ou g h targ e te d sh orte r ter m co mme rc ia l p r o jec ts . Researchers at the AIRC are open to all of these models and are open to working with the industrial partner through the full commercialisation pipeline: idea, feasibility and market analysis, technology development, product and business development.

Funding for collaborative academic/industrial research is available through Enterprise Ireland and the Irish Research Council. The AIRC has experience

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION Data analytics uses machine learning techniques to create predictive models

with developing proposal for commercial research with both of these bodies.

based on patterns in large historical structured data sets. These models provide

IP POSITION

insight into large data sets, at a scale not possible through manual inspection,

By its very nature as an academic research centre much of the IP

that supports business decision making. Text analytics differs from standard data

developed in house at the AIRC is in the public domain through academic

analytics in that the data it uses is typically unstructured text. As a result, text

publications. The AIRC, however, has experience in developing IP in

analytics often requires a transformational pre-processing of the unstructured

collaboration with and shared with commercial partners.

data.

www.comp.dit.ie/aigroup


Linguistically Motivated Avatar RESEARCH INTERESTS

CURRENT RESEARCH

Computational Linguistics, Communication Sciences, Computer Science, Information Technology, Language and Technology, Human Computer Interactions, Embodied Conversational Agents, Virtual Reality, Natural Language Processing, Language and Technology, Communication Engineering

We use Role and Reference Grammar (RRG) in this research in the development of a parser/generator for sign language, in particular to this research, Irish Sign Language (ISL). We use RRG to motivate the architecture of the lexicon and we use the RRG bidirectional linking algorithm to develop and to implement the parse and generate functions. We use the RRG interlingua bridge to create an intermediate semantic representation of the source text, based on RRG logical structures. These logical structures can then be used to generate our target language (ISL). It is envisaged that the RRG parser/generator described here will be used as a component in the development of a computational framework capable of linking the divide between the linguistic and the animation interface for an embodied conversational agent (ECA) for ISL.

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS The avatar for our research has been developed using Blender version 2.49b and MakeHuman. The various handshapes of ISL have been researched and identified. Ó Baoill and Matthews (2000) indicate the 66 different handshapes are utilised within ISL in the formation of signed vocabulary. The Role and Reference Grammar (RRG) linguistic framework (Van Valin and LaPolla, 2005) and the RRG lexicon for this research have been mapped to XML. The architecture of the parse and generate process has been developed. RRG will be used in this research in the development of an RRG parser/generator which will later be used as a component in the development of a computational framework for an embodied conversational agent for ISL. This poses significant technical and theoretical difficulties within both RRG and for software. As ISL is a visual gestural language without any aural or written form, like all other Sign Languages, the challenge is to extend the RRG view of the lexicon and the layered structure of the word, indeed the model itself, to accommodate sign languages. In particular, the morphology of sign languages is concerned with manual and non-manual features, handshapes across the dominant and nondominant hand in simultaneous signed constructions, head, eyebrows and mouth shape.

Architecture of the Parse and Generate Process for the ISL Avatar

Architecture of the Parse and Generate Process for the ISL Realisation diagram for the sign “Mother” in ISL The current phase of research involves the development of the underlying linguistic model with bi-directional RRG. The architecture of the RRG lexicon and methods to resolve the challenges involved with the development of a lexicon that is capable of representing lexical information pertinent to (Irish) Sign Language and the lexical definition of a Sign Language word (Zenshan 2007) are being researched. This will enable the conversion of English text into a meta representation in RRG logical structures and generate ISL on output to the ECA in real time using Python scripting.

CONTACT DETAILS Irene Murtagh, Institute of Technology Blanchardstown (ITB) murtagh.irene@gmail.com

Contact Details: murtagh.irene@gmail.com


Utilization of Text and Document Context RESEARCH INTERESTS

CURRENT RESEARCH

Throughout the lifespan of any educational institution or business large numbers of documents are created and stored often in different document repositories.

By utilizing the content available in documents and the document repository a rich understanding of the documents can be obtained. When structural and styling information as possible along with the inherent relationships between documents a wide picture of the connections between documents can be created.

With the ongoing drop on the cost of the storage and availability of data, large quantities of data are stored and archived. This archiving of data provides an initial question of how can this data be used to aid future processes rather than just being taken at face value for a small number of users. Document repositories can be as simple as a number of documents in a logical order or as complex as an interactive web based environment that allows users to upload files and append additional metadata and description text to the documents. This research project focuses on the utilization of the documents and data that have been created to provide an additional level of insight aiding processing such as search query enrichment and data profile generation to provide a better understanding of the data that has already been created.

This study proposes the utilization of this additional meta data to aid the process of word ranking to create a detailed insight into the relevance of data to existing documents. This approach can be used for a number of different applications such as passage extraction, word ranking and other information retrieval tasks. This study utilizes this approach during the process of search query enrichment to create a more detailed and specific query to yield better search results.

Content Extraction Extract Document Content

Distance

Add Structural Meta Data to Tree

Font Styling

This project is aimed at researching the areas of: •Document Analysis

Descriptive Text Inclusion

Gather Meta Data

•System & User Environment Data Extraction •Analysis And The Utilization of Existing Data and Meta Data •Adding Value and Relevance To Unused Data

Position in tree User Connections Tree Data (docs, relationships, additional meta data) Scope of Process (how many branches etc to include)

Modular Weighting Framework

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS Enrich Query • This study has lead to the quality assessment of text extraction tools to retain original text and formatting to aid word ranking and relevance identification. • A Tree based stored representation of a complete document repository has been created allowing for the easy access of document and system data. • A number of modules have been created to incorporate text size, location, neighboring data and word frequency into the framework. • Work is currently underway creating additional weighting modules for the inclusion of non-standard meta data into the weighting process.

REFERENCES • Goslin, K., Hofmann, M. (2013), Identifying and Visualizing the Similarities Between Course Content at a Learning Object, Module and Program Level, Sixth

Normalize Values

Enrich Original Query Text

Weight Individual Words

Run Query

Fig 1: System Overview Fig. 1 above provides an overview of the document extraction process and gathering of relevant system information to create stored and easily accessable representation of all the data in the system. By storing all relevant material from the repository, a modular system is then used that allows for different elements of the system to be plugged in or removed depending on the data that needs to be processed. This modular process creates an output that can be read by any of the application specific purposes such as Search Query Enrichment.

CONTACT DETAILS

International Conference on Educational Data Mining 2013. Memphis, Tennessee. • Goslin, K., Hofmann, M. (2013), Cross Domain Assessment of Document to HTML Conversion Tools to Quantify Text and Structural Loss During Document Analysis, FORTAN Workshop, Intelligence and Security Informatics Conference (EISIC 2013), Uppsala, Sweden.

Mr. Kyle Goslin E-mail: kylegoslin@gmail.com

• Goslin K. Hofmann, M. (2013) Utilization of Text and Document Context in Large Content Repositories to Aid Environment Specific Search, 12th International Information Technology and Telecommunication Conference, Althlone, Ireland. • Goslin K. Hofmann, M. (2012) Extraction of VLE Course Hierarchy For The Creation of Tree Based Context Specific Metadata, 11th International Information

Dr. Markus Hofmann E-mail: markus.hofmann@itb.ie

LINC Building Institute of Technology Blanchardstown, Blanchardstown Road North, Dublin 15.

Technology and Telecommunication Conference, Cork, Ireland.

Contact Details: kylegoslin@gmail.com


Machine Learning MACHINE LEARNING

CONCEPT DRIFT

Machine Learning (ML) is about making computers learn or evolve their behaviour

The concept being modelled can change over time. There is a need to

using empirical data. Supervised Machine Learning is an area of ML which involves

develop strategies to handle concept drift – i.e. to keep the model up to

‘learning from experience’. A model is built from available examples of data which

date. There are two dominant approaches to handling drift: (1) assuming

can then be used to make predictions for new examples. One of the requirements

drift occurs and continuously rebuilding the model at regular intervals and

of supervised learning is the availability of labelled data examples. The AIRC@DIT

(2) waiting until monitoring the data suggests that drift has occurred and

has a number of research projects in the area of Supervised Machine Learning –

then rebuilding the model. These approaches are complicated by the lack

specifically in the area of Active Learning and Concept Drift.

of available labelled data with which to rebuild the model.

ACTIVE LEARNING

The AIRC is working on comprehensive comparisons of drift handling

Active Learning is a semi-supervised approach that allows us to build prediction

significant amounts of labelled data are not available [5,6,7].

techniques and developing new approaches that are effective when

build the models. The AIRC has developed new, more effective selection strategies [1,2] and identified deterministic, robust strategies for selecting the initial training data [3]. We have also developed tools that will allow the visualisation of different selection strategies on datasets [4], see below

Aggregated(Average(Class(accuracy(

systems while minimising the effort required in manually labelling the data used to 1$

0.9$ 0.8$ 0.7$ 0.6$ 0.5$ 0.4$ 0.3$ 0%$used$

15%$used$DV$

15%$used$RS$

100%$used$

Lindstrom et al. FLAIRS 2011

REFERENCES [1] Rong Hu, Sarah Jane Delany, Brian Mac Namee, (2009) Sampling with Confidence: Using k-NN Confidence Measures in Active Learning, In: Proceedings of the UKDS Workshop at ICCBR 2009 p.181-192.

.

[2] Rong Hu, Sarah Jane Delany, Brian Mac Namee (2010) EGAL: Exploration Guided Active Learning for TCBR I Bichindaritz, S Montani (eds.) In: Proceedings of ICCBR 2010 LNCS 6176 pp 156-170 Springer [3] Rong Hu, Sarah Jane Delany & Brian Mac Namee (2010) Off to a Good Start: Using Clustering to Select the Initial Training Set in Active Learning In: Proceedings FLAIRS 2010 p 26-31, AAAI Press [4] Brian Mac Namee, Rong Hu, and Sarah Jane Delany (2010) Inside the Selection Box: Visualising Active Learning Selection strategies. In Proceedings of the Challenges of Data Visualization Workshop at NIPS 2010 [5] Sarah Jane Delany, Pádraig Cunningham, Alexey Tsymbal, Lorcan Coyle (2005) A Casebased Technique for Tracking Concept Drift in Spam Filtering Journal of Knowledge Based Systems 18 (4-5) p187-195, Elsevier [6] Patrick Lindstrom, Brian Mac Namee & Sarah Jane Delany (2010) Handling concept drift in a text data stream constrained by high labelling cost In: Proceedings of the 23rd International Flairs Conference (FLAIRS 2010) AAAI Press

Mac Namee et al. NIPS 2010

[7] Patrick Lindstrom, Brian Mac Namee, Sarah Jane Delany (2011) Drift Detection using Uncertainty Distribution Divergence, In Proceedings of the 2nd International Workshop on Handling Concept Drift in Adaptive Information Systems (HaCDAIS)

Web: www.comp.dit.ie/aigroup


Modelling of Isthmic Spondylolisthesis SUMMARY Spondylolisthesis affects 6% of the population of America, approximately 15 million people. The root cause of spondylolisthesis is a defect of the vertebra, and although this defect is not found in new-born’s it is found in approximately 5% of people by the age of 7 years and 6% by adulthood. These vertebral defects are twice as common in boys as in girls and lead to pain and in some cases surgery to correct the condition.[Hensinger, Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, vol. 71] Spondylolisthesis is a condition of the spine where through either deformation or degeneration, a vertebra or section of the vertebral column becomes displaced in either an anterior or posterior direction over the vertebra directly below. This project focuses on isthmic spondylolisthesis; displacement of the vertebra due to a defect of the pars interarticularis (Fig 3), this defect normally effects adolescents and takes the form of a fracture of the pars which leads to increased shearing loads on the intervertebral disc (Fig 1). Isthmic spondylolisthesis is more common with adolescents because the neural arch which includes the pars interarticularis is still forming; this growing piece of bone is not yet fully formed and is therefore susceptible to damage. [Pearson, 2004][Boyle, 2011]

Fig 2: ANSYS Fracture Mechanics (http://www.ansys.com)

FUTURE WORK & POTENTIAL The treatment of isthmic spondylolisthesis typically involves the placement of bone grafts in both anterior and posterior locations between the vertebrae in question. These vertebrae and the interconnecting grafts are then supported by posterior instrumentation (screws and rods). It is hypothesized that eliminating motion at one spinal level leads to hypermobility and increased forces at adjacent levels, thus increasing the rate of disc degeneration [Eck, Spine, vol. 27, 2002]. In a study of risk factors for adjacent degeneration, Okuda [Spine, vol. 29, 2004] reported that in a cohort of 58 patients 29% had adjacent level degeneration and 4% had degeneration requiring repeat surgery. Adjacent level degeneration is a serious health and economic issue, therefore it is the further aim of this project to utilise the FEA models and test methods developed in order to examine the roll of posterior instrumentation stiffness on the intervertebral disc pressures at levels adjacent to spinal fusion. Then through the use of optimisation tools develop new spinal implants with optimum stiffness for support without the associated risk of degeneration.

Fig 1: Aetiology of spondylolisthesis

MATERIALS & METHODS The analyses carried out in this project will focus initially on the root cause of the isthmic spondylolisthesis condition, stress cracks. Stress cracks in human bone form and are repaired on an on-going basis, this project will examine the forces and frequency of application of those forces that result in propagation that takes place at a rate which is faster than the bone remodelling process can cope with. This will be done by recreating the cyclical physiologic loads that caused the crack propagation and through a set of incrementally increasing cycle counts establish the rate of crack growth. Tests will be carried out on porcine cervical spinal specimens using an 8 axis MTS Bionix Servo hydraulic Test System. This test system allows the application of pure bending fatigue loads. The specimens will then be sectioned across the pars interarticularis and examined using a scanning electron microscope. A parallel stream of analysis using finite element methods will also be carried out. This involves the use of CT and µCT data within the ANSYS simulation environment (Fig 2). Due to the complexity of the bone material a sub modelling process will be used along with a crack modelling tool. This will allow the global boundary conditions to be transposed onto a suitably sized sub-model within which a crack mesh can be modelled. The outcome of the finite element analysis will be a predictor of crack growth in response to physiologic cyclical loading.

Fig 3: Vertebra (http://boneandspine.com)

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Funded by the Irish Research Council under the EMBARK Initiative.

“Our vision is to provide biomedical research with an emphasis on improving human health and quality of life by applying engineering principles to medical problems that will ultimately lead to innovative applications in clinical practice.”

Colin Bright, Bioengineering Technology Centre , ITT Dublin


The Biomechanics of Balloon Kyphoplasty SUMMARY

RESULTS

Treating fractures of the spine is a major challenge for the medical community both within Ireland and Internationally with an estimated 1.4 million fractures per annum worldwide [Johnell 2006]. Treatment options for these fractures have evolved from simple bed rest through to modern minimally invasive cementation techniques. Balloon Kyphoplasty is one such minimally invasive treatment that uses an inflatable bone tamp to restore the height of collapsed vertebrae, followed by cement injection to stabilise the structure (Figure 1).

Results indicate that increased Kyphotic loading causes a shift in stress distribution to the posterior parts of the interface region by up to 34-44% (Figure 3). The anterior and middle sections of the interface experienced changes in average Von Mises stress of less than 11%. Maximum Von Mises stresses were not strongly influenced by the altered loading angle and increased by up to 7% in the posterior section of the interface region.

Figure 1 An Irish study [Lenehan 2009] of ~1,000 admissions during a 5-year period found traumatic spinal injuries needed on average 46 days of hospital admission, along with life-long monitoring in cases of spinal cord injury. Costs for life-long treatment of a 25-year old with spinal cord injury has been estimated at €2.9 million [NSCISC 2012]. A recent clinical study [Kim 2012] of 175 patients drew attention to the significance of the bone-cement interface region following Kyphoplasty. The current work hypothesised that mechanical loading at the bone-cement interface is altered by the changing load angle induced by vertebral height loss.

METHODS A validated finite element model [Tyndyk 2007] of a human thoracolumbar spine was segmented into a single L1 vertebral body and modified to replicate bilateral Balloon Kyphoplasty (Figure 2). Cement was modeled using prolate spheroids surrounded by an interface region divided into anterior, middle and posterior sections. Interface thickness was calculated using a previously developed mathematical model with a bone volume fraction of 0.3 and 50% bone compaction [Purcell 2012, 2013]. An 800N [Tyndyk 2005] load was applied at angles of 0o and 20o [Aquarius 2011] to represent the loading conditions during rehabilitation after the Kyphoplasty procedure. Load angle ≈ 0o Load angle = 20o

Anterior

Middle

Posterior

Figure 3

DISCUSSION & FUTURE WORK The results show that height loss induced load changes initiate a shift in stress distribution to the posterior parts of the interface region. Further investigation of the stress states found significant compressive stresses are imposed on the posterior parts of the interface region due to the transmission of shear loads through the pedicles caused by Kyphosis. This demonstrates that height loss and interface loading are strongly interdependent and can contribute to sustaining a cycle of increased interfacial stresses leading to further vertebral collapse. Applying these findings in the context of Kyphoplasty, where poor cement interdigitation is prevalent [Kruger 2012], indicates an increased likelihood of sliding at the contact points between the bone and cement. It has been shown [Zhao 2012] that localized deformation at bone-cement contact sites constitute a significant proportion of the deformation seen in the interface region. The increased loading in the posterior parts of the interface carries additional significance in a clinical context since the cement bolus in this region often contains an imprint from the cannula used by the surgeon and can act as a site for crack initiation. Investigations into alternative surgical devices and techniques is ongoing to address shortcomings in the present treatment strategies. These investigations have highlighted multiple opportunities for product innovations with the potential to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs for healthcare providers.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Funded by the Irish Research Council under the EMBARK initiative. This work was presented at the 29th Southern Biomedical Engineering Conference in Miami, USA during May 2013 and was awarded 1st Prize for Best Presentation. Figure 2

Mid-section of spheroid

“Our vision is to provide excellent biomedical research with an emphasis on improving human health and quality of life by applying engineering principles to medical problems that will ultimately lead to innovative applications in clinical practice.”

Philip Purcell, Bioengineering Technology Centre, ITT Dublin


Centre for Elastomer Research (CER) KEY ACHIEVEMENTS • €1.5m + in research earnings • 100 + refereed journal and conference papers • International Academic and Industrial Research Partners in Germany, US, Singapore, UK. • 8 current PhD Projects • 10 PhD Completions • 6 MPhil Completions • Patents pending for unique equi-biaxial dynamic test facilities • Testing and Consultancy for Industry

RECENT PUBLICATIONS RESEARCH INTERESTS Advanced Materials ~ Smart / Adaptive Elastomers ~ Magnetorheological Elastomers (MREs), ~ Fabrication, Switching Effect, Fatigue Resistance, Modelling Damping, Interfacial Layer Design (In partnership with the German Institute for Rubber Technology, DIK) ~Dielectrical Elastomers (DEs) ~ Fabrication, Physical Characterisation, Pull-in Effect, Permittivity Biomedical Applications ~ Gastrostomy (Feeding Tube) Device Design and Material Selection (In partnership with the University of Dundee and the National Neuroscience Centre, Beaumont Hospital) Hyperelastic and Viscoelatic Material Behaviour Equi-biaxial Fatigue Analysis of Rubber ~ Prediction Criteria / Physical Testing and Simulation Continuous Mixing of Rubber Compounds (In partnership with VMI-AZ, Germany) Advanced Foams

The effect of microstructure on the dynamic equi-biaxial fatigue behaviour of magnetorheological elastomers. Y. Zhou, S. Jerrams, A. Betts and L. Chen, a chapter in the book Constitutive Models for Rubber VIII, CRC/Balkema, July 2013 Generating a variable uniform magnetic field suitable for fatigue testing magnetorheological elastomers using the bubble inflation method. D. Gorman, N. Murphy, S. Jerrams and R. Ekins), a chapter in the book Constitutive Models for Rubber VIII, CRC/Balkema, July 2013 Crack propagation in Magnetorheological Elastomers (MREs). J. McIntyre, S. Jerrams and T. Alshuth, a chapter in the book Constitutive Models for Rubber VIII, CRC/Balkema, July 2013 The Equi-Biaxial Fatigue Characteristics of EPDM under True (Cauchy) Stress Control Conditions. M. Johnson, N. Murphy, S. Jerrams, J. Hanley and R. Ekins, a chapter in the book Constitutive Models for Rubber VIII, CRC/Balkema, July 2013 Multi-axial fatigue in magnetorheological elastomers using bubble inflation. Y. Zhou, S. Jerrams and L. Chen, Journal of Materials and Design 50, 2013, pp 68–71 The determination of multi-axial fatigue in magnetorheological elastomers using bubble inflation. Y. Zhou, S. Jerrams, L. Chen and M Johnson, accepted for publication in Advanced Materials Research (ISSN: 1022-6680), Elsevier 2013.

Integrity of Wind Turbine Design and Materials (In partnership with ICOMP, University of Limerick)

The Significance of Equi-biaxial Bubble Inflation in Determining Elastomeric Fatigue Properties. S. Jerrams, N. Murphy and J. Hanley, a chapter in the book ‘Advanced Elastomers Technology, Properties and Applications’, pp 363-400, (Ed. A Boczkowska) ISBN 978-953-51-0739-2, Intech, 2012

TEAM

A rheological model of the dynamic behaviour of magnetorheological elastomers. L. Chen and S. Jerrams, Journal of Applied Physics 110, 013513, 2011

Professor Steve Jerrams ~ Centre Director Dr Tony Betts ~ Advanced Elastomer Chemistry Dr Niall Murphy ~ Equi-biaxial Fatigue Testing Dr Ray Ekins ~ Advanced Magnetic Array Design and Fabrication Dr Barry Duignan ~ Hyperfoams Dr Olaf Skibba (VMI) Dr Thomas Alshuth (DIK) Prof Eric Abel (University of Dundee) Prof Orla Hardiman, (National Neuroscience Centre, Beaumont Hospital)

CONTACT DETAILS Professor Steve Jerrams Director, the Centre for Elastomer Research (CER) The Focas Research Institute Dublin Institute of Technology, Kevin Street Camden Row Dublin 8 Ireland Phone: 00353(0)14027919 Mobile 00353(0)876236887

Contact Details : stephen.jerrams@dit.ie / http://www.dit.ie/researchandenterprise/ditrdcentres/cer/


Centre for Microbial Host Interactions Control

Exposed to bacteria

TEAM PIs: Siobhán McClean, PhD

RESEARCH INTEREST CMHI at ITT-Dublin investigates the interactions of bacterial pathogens with

Máire Callaghan, PhD Emma Caraher, PhD.

Current PhD students

Recent Graduates

Sarah Kennedy

Anne Costello, PhD

Lydia Fabunmi

Jean Tyrrell, PhD

Minu Shinoy

Ruth Pilkington, MSc

Ruth Dennehy

Seshu Kumar Kaza, MSc

Mark Murphy

Suzanne McKeon PhD

Niamh Whelan

Sam Maher, PhD

Arundhuti Ghatak

Tracy Mullen, PhD

Luke McGuigan

Gillian Herbert, MSc

Louise Cullen

Kiranmai Gumulupurapu, MSc

Emma Reece

host cells, in an effort to develop novel therapeutics to eliminate these infections in vulnerable hosts.

Our group focuses on pathogens which cause chronic

infection in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. CF is a genetic recessive disorder resulting in poor clearance of bacteria from the airways. Chronic opportunistic infections in these patients contribute to lung function decline. The infections are caused by a range of bacterial pathogens each with their own virulence features

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS    

> 2 million in funding in the past 10 years 34 joint research articles since 2006 12 graduates Microscopy images selected for cover of Microbiology Journal May 2012

and all highly resistant to antimicrobial therapy.

TECHNOLOGIES

We have focused primarily on a particularly pathogenic group of bacteria in CF

Cell culture models

Invertebrate hosts (virulence hosts)

called the Burkholderia cepacia complex (Bcc) and on an emerging species in CF,

Biofilm flow cell technology

Proteomics

Pandoraea to investigate:

Immunological response assays

Confocal microscopy

 Attachment of bacteria to host cells and colonisation  Host cell invasion mechanisms Bacterial invasion of lung cells

RECENT PUBLICATIONS

 Biofilm formation  Immune responses

Bacteria

 Polymicrobial infection

A. Bevivino, L. Pirone, R. Pilkington, N. Cifani, C. Dalmastri, M. Callaghan, F. Ascenzioni, S. McClean. Interaction of environmental B. cenocepacia strains with cystic fibrosis and non-cystic fibrosis bronchial epithelial cells in vitro. Microbiology 2012 May;158:1325-33

 Potential vaccine candidates

Control

C Wright, R Pilkington, M. Callaghan, S. McClean. Activation of MMP-9 by human lung epithelial cells in response to the cystic fibrosis associated B. cenocepacia, reduced wound healing in vitro. Am J Physoiol 2011;301(4):L575-86

SK. Kumar, S. McClean, M. Callaghan. IL-8 released from human lung epithelial cells induced by cystic fibrosis pathogens Burkholderia cepacia complex affects growth and intracellular survival of bacteria. Int. J. Med. Microbiol. 2011; 301 (1): 26-33.

Infected

Callaghan M and McClean S. Bacterial host interactions in cystic fibrosis. Curr Opin Micro. 2012; 15: 71-77.

Bacterial disruption of lung epithelial integrity

Caraher, EM, Gumulapurapu, K, Taggart, CC, McClean, S, Callaghan, M. The effect of recombinant human lactoferrin on growth and the antibiotic susceptibility of the CF pathogen Bcc when cultured planktonically or as biofilms. J Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 2007 60:546-54.

siobhan.mcclean@ittdublin.ie; maire.callaghan@ittdublin.ie emma.caraher@ittdublin.ie


Adaptation in CF Pathogens KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL A series of sequential isolates collected over several years were obtained from two CF patients attending SVUH, one with a chronic Bcc infection which is confined to the lung, the other with bacteraemia. Identification of these adaptations should enable the rational design of drugs to target these virulence factors.

SUMMARY/ABSTRACT In vivo virulence using a G. mellonella insect model Cystic fibrosis is a genetic recessive disorder characterised by chronic lung infection caused by various opportunistic pathogens, including Pseudomonas

• No statistical significance was noted in early versus late isolates from patient 1,or in blood relative to sputum isolates patient 2 .

aeruginosa (Pa) and Burkholderia cepacia complex (Bcc).

• The early sputum isolate was less virulent relative to the later isolate.

These repeated

bacterial lung infections result in a gradual decline in lung function and, ultimately, patient death. Bcc is the most feared pathogen as patients can

• The later blood isolate appeared less virulent than the earlier blood isolate patient 2. Surprisingly, no obvious difference between blood and sputum was noted.

experience a more rapid decline than those colonised with Pa. Bcc is highly Adhesion of isolates to CF lung epithelial cells

antimicrobially resistant and it is rarely eradicated.

While Bcc is generally

6.00E+06

confined to the lung, bacteraemia and septicaemia can develop in a subgroup of 5.00E+06

patients which contributes to their sharp decline. The mechanisms by which Bcc chronically colonises and causes bacteraemia are poorly understood.

4.00E+06

detection by the host immune system and also to adapt to the conditions in the host environment. The overall objective of this project is to examine whether

CFU

Bacteria can change their phenotype during chronic colonisation to avoid 3.00E+06

2.00E+06

Bcc changes aspects of its phenotype from initial colonisation to chronic infection by examining a sequential series of clinical blood and sputum isolates.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

1.00E+06

0.00E+00

• In vivo virulence was comparable between blood and sputum isolates using a Galleria mellonella model. • Later sputum isolates attach to lung epithelial cells more readily than early isolates, indicating an adaptation to the host environment during chronic colonisation In vivo virulence in Galleria mellonella

S7815

S7795

B737

S7437

B5734

Sep-06

Dec-11

Jan-09

May-10

Jul-10

Patient 1

Patient 2 Description

K562

E-coli

Control

Isolate Adhesion to CFBE cells • The later sputum isolate adheres more to the CFBE cells than the earlier isolate patient 1(p<0.023) ,indicating an increased ability to colonise during chronic colonisation . • No obvious difference in the attachment ability between blood and sputum isolates patient 2 was observed.

1.00E+08

1.00E+07

• Future work will focus on identifying the alterations leading to increased host cell attachment which will in turn lead to identification of potential drug targets.

1.00E+06

Log LD50

1.00E+05

TEAM FUNDERS

1.00E+04

1.00E+03

This project is funded by IRCSET

1.00E+02

1.00E+01

1.00E+00 S7815

S7795

B737

S7437

B5734

Sep-06

Dec-11

Jan-09

May-10

Jul-10

Patient 1

Patient 2 Description

K562

Control

In collaboration with Dr Kirsten Schaffer St Vincent's University Hospital (SVUH)

Louise Cullen, Máire Callaghan & Siobhán McClean (contact: siobhan.mcclean@ittdublin.ie)


BccVac PREFERRED ROUTE TO COMMERCIALISATION PROBLEM / MARKET NEED BccVac involves the development of two antigens (BcOMP1 and BcOMP2) to protect cystic fibrosis (CF) patients and other vulnerable populations from a virulent bacterium, Burkholderia cepacia complex (Bcc). This pathogen is the most feared among patients with CF but is causing increased concern beyond this disease. The bacterium causes a chronic infection which is highly resistant to

The preferred route of commercialisation development would be co-development or licencing by a Biopharma company. There is a very small indigenous Biopharma sector in Ireland, therefore a spin-out business model will also be explored as a realistic strategy.

There is precedent for novel vaccines such as this to be treated

as orphan drugs by the EMEA, with a booster TB vaccine, granted orphan status based on an “insufficient return on investment” criterion. The vaccine market

antibiotics. There are currently no vaccines against Bcc. The only treatments are

generally is a growing market. The development of new vaccines is a promising

high dose antibiotics and, despite these, a Bcc infection is not eradicated once a

solution not just for Bcc but for a wide range of infectious diseases.

person is colonised. Other groups of patients that are susceptible include chronic granulomatous disease (CGD), bronchiectasis patients, dialysis patients, organ transplant patients and oncology patients. Bcc is also emerging as a nosocomial infection among long term hospitalised patients and ventilated patients.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION We have identified two antigens that have individually demonstrated excellent efficacy as protective vaccines against Bcc in mice when challenged with the bacteria. In addition, we have shown high levels of serum antibodies specific to the antigens and immunological memory, all of which are essential for good vaccine candidates.

This innovation addresses an unmet clinical need. This

project involves developing these vaccine antigens with a view to their commercialisation. The antigen production process that we have developed utilises a recombinant protein expression system in E. coli, which will avoid large scale cultures of Bcc.

The E. coli expression system is widely used for the

expression of protein therapeutics and it is anticipated that the process established will lend itself well to commercial scale production.

Next stages include: 1.Confirmation of potency in a different species 2.Process development and scale up. 3.Stability studies. 4.Optimisation of adjuvant and route

Immunisation of mice with the antigens individually (in collaboration with Dr Bernie Mahon, NUIM) showed excellent protection of mice against both clinically relevant species.

5.Toxicity and safety testing.

IP POSITION No patents exist involving the two antigens as vaccines to protect against Burkholderia cepacia complex infection. A patent was filed with the European patent office on Dec 18th 2012 describing this innovation and claiming a vaccine for the prevention of Burkholderia infection (EP12197902; Co inventors: Dr Siobhán McClean and Minu Shinoy / Assignee: Institution of Technology Tallaght)

Minu Shinoy, Máire Callaghan, Siobhán McClean – Contact: siobhan.mcclean@ittdublin.ie


Cystic Fibrosis (CF) INTRODUCTION

• We subsequently established that B. cenocepacia can also acquire iron from at least two host iron binding proteins hemin and ferritin but not from transferrin or lactoferrin (figure 2).

• Cystic fibrosis (CF), caused by a mutation in the CFTR gene, is a disease characterised by chronic lung infections which result in a decline in lung function and premature death.

• The ability of B. cenocepacia to acquire iron from host sources is also independent of siderophore production (figure 2).

• Burkholderia cepacia complex (Bcc) are a group of 17 gram negative opportunistic pathogens that cause serious and often fatal infections in CF. • To survive in the host, Bcc organisms produce iron binding siderophores which bind free iron and transport it into the cell via specific cell surface receptors.

B. cenocepacia 1.20E+09

• B. cenocepacia is one of the most clinically important members of the Bcc and produces ornibactin as its primary siderophore.

10uM Hemin

8.00E+08

Cfu/ml

• We are investigating iron acquisition strategies of B. cenocepacia to understand the significance of this virulence feature in pathogenesis and explore the potential of targeting iron acquisition as a therapeutic strategy for these infections.

Control

10uM Ferritin 10uM Lactoferrin

4.00E+08

10uM Transferrin

Results 0.00E+00

• We have demonstrated the ability of B. cenocepacia to respond rapidly to iron deprivation by producing iron–binding siderophores, primarily ornibactin (data not shown).

0

• Using B. cenocepacia siderophore mutants (Mark Thomas of Sheffield University), we demonstrated that xenosiderophore utilisation was independent of ornibactin production.

B. cenocepacia –orbS (ornibactin mutant) 2.00E+09

Control 1.60E+09

Cfu/ml

• The growth of B. cenocepacia was significantly enhanced in the presence of both fungal siderophores (figure 1)

20

Time (h)

• The ability of B. cenocepacia to utilise siderophores from other species (xenosiderophores) was subsequently investigated • The filamentous fungus Aspergillus fumigatus which secretes two siderophores, fusarinine C and triacetylfusarinine C is another coloniser of the CF lung.

10

10uM Hemin 1.20E+09

10uM Ferritin 8.00E+08

10uM Lactoferrin

4.00E+08

10uM Transferrin

0.00E+00 0

5

10

15

20

25

Time (h)

B. cenocepacia

1.00E+09

Figure 2: B. cenocepacia utilisation of host iron binding proteins

8.00E+08

Conclusion

Cfu/ml

6.00E+08

4.00E+08

K562

• B. cenocepacia employs a range of effective strategies to acquire iron in order to compete with co-colonising pathogens and overcome iron sequestration by the host

K562 10uM FUSC

• These data suggest that iron acquisition is a significant virulence feature of this pathogenic species

2.00E+08

K562 10uM TAFC

Future Work

0.00E+00

3h

6h

B. cenocepacia -orbS (ornibactin mutant) 6.00E+08

K562-orbs

• Mechanism of action of xenosiderophore utilisation under investigation using HPLC to confirm uptake, fluorescently labelling TAFC and FUSC to determine localisation within the cell and proteomics to identify receptors or proteins that may be involved. • The antigenic potential of an ornibactin conjugate is also under investigation and their therapeutic and diagnostic potential will be explored.

Cfu/ml

4.00E+08

K562-orbs 10uM FUSC 2.00E+08

K562-orbs 10uM TAFC 0.00E+00

3h

6h

Figure 1: B. cenocepacia utilisation of fungal siderophores

Acknowledgments • Supervisor: Dr. Máire Callaghan, ITT Dublin •Collaborator: Prof. Seán Doyle, NUI Maynooth • Funding: Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) Cycle 5. and co-funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), part of the European Union Structural Funds Programme 2007-2013.

Contact Details: Niamh.whelan@postgrad.ittdublin.ie

Maire.callaghan@ittdublin.ie


Identification of Virulence Factors KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL The roles of two immunogenic proteins were examined to determine their role in the pathogenesis of Bcc.

SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

Galleria mellonella infected with the lipoprotein mutant (BCAL3204) displayed a significant increase in survival in comparison to the wild-type strain. This mutant also showed over a two-fold reduction in attachment to epithelial cells demonstrating the role of this lipoprotein in both virulence and attachment of Bcc species during pathogenesis.

Background: Burkholderia cepacia complex (Bcc) is a group of organisms consisting of 17 species that cause chronic infections in people with cystic fibrosis (CF). Bcc infection in CF patients can lead to severe lung decline, are highly antimicrobially resistant and are fatal in a subgroup of patients.

In contrast, the BCAS0292 mutant did not show a decrease in attachment to epithelial cells or result in increased survival of Galleria mellonella indicating that this protein is not involved in attachment to epithelial cells or in the virulence of K562.

The aim of this work is to identify virulence factors from two of the most clinically relevant Bcc species, B. cenocepacia and B. multivorans, using an immunoproteomic approach. Immunoreactive proteins are often virulence factors as they are exposed to the host response system. Two dimensional blots prepared from Bcc strains were probed with serum from CF patients that had been colonised with Bcc to identify immunoreactive proteins. Several key proteins were identified and the virulence of two, a lipoprotein (BCAL3204) and a hypothetical protein (BCAS0292) were analysed further by comparing deletion mutants to the wild type strain. The deletion mutants were examined using the Galleria mellonella virulence model. The virulence of the lipoprotein mutant was significantly reduced in this model (p < 0.02) in comparison to the wild type, while a slight decrease in virulence was observed in the hypothetical protein mutant. The role of these proteins in adhesion to CFBEs was also examined. Compared to the wild-type strain, the lipoprotein mutant displayed a substantial reduction in adhesion to epithelial cells indicating that this protein may play a role in bacterial attachment to host cells. The hypothetical protein mutant showed no overall decrease in attachment to epithelial cells

Data represent the mean CFU/ml from three independent experiments. A two-fold reduction in attachment was observed in the K56-2 BCAL3204 mutant, while there was no decrease in attachment observed in the K56-2 BCAS0292 mutant, in comparison to wild-type K56-2. E.coli NCIB 9485 was used as a negative control.

Highlights to date Figure 1: Two–dimensional electrophoresis of B.cenocepacia BC7 membrane proteins LD₅₀ values were calculated for each strain and the mean value determined from 3 independent experiments. The LD₅₀ value of the BCAL3204 mutant was significantly higher (p<0.02) than wildtype K56-2. The LD₅₀ value of the BCAS0292 mutant was 5 times higher than wild-type K56-2.

Further investigation into the role of these immunogenic proteins will provide a better understanding of the role they play in the pathogenesis of Bcc, which could lead to their development as potential vaccine antigens or as drug targets for anti-virulence therapies.

TEAM FUNDERS Figure 2: Two –dimensional electrophoresis of B.multivorans LMG13010 membrane proteins

In collaboration with Prof Miguel Valvano (QUB)

Ruth Dennehy, Máire Callaghan and Siobhán McClean (siobhan.mcclean@ittdublin.ie)


Analysis and Simulation of Animal Cadavers SUMMARY The human thoracolumbar junction is a common area for burst fractures. In a study of single level burst fractures of the thoracolumbar region, 58% of burst fractures occurred at the L1 vertebra [Aligizkais 2002]. Burst fractures are caused by high impact axial compressive loads acting on the spinal column. This type of fracture is common in falls from a height or car accidents.

RESULTS Anatomical and biomechanical tests of porcine and sika deer were carried out. The range of motion tests were analysed and compared to other published data, for the same FSU region (L3-L4).

Figure 1: Burst fractures [Back website (L) and Open Access website (R)] As the availability of human cadaver spines, especially young spines, is limited, animal models have been used to induce spinal injury and evaluate spinal treatments. Animal to human comparative studies have concluded that humans have no true representative so, a compromise is necessary. The selected animal must represent the human parameters being examined. In a study of vertebral body fractures, bone mineral density (BMD) is a critical parameter. Measurements of BMD, in lateral projection DEXA scans, are good indicators of ultimate load and vertebral body strength [Perilli 2012]. Before inducing a burst fracture into an animal vertebra, an important pre-study is the comparison of anatomical and biomechanical range of motions of human thoracolumbar region to animal models.

MATERIALS & METHODS Eight porcine spines and eighteen (seven fallow and eleven sika) deer spines are being analysed in the study. The spines were freshly dissected and frozen at -20°C until testing. Before biomechanical range of motion (ROM) testing, the specimens were thawed for 24 hours. Muscle tissue was removed while the ligaments, bone structures and intervertebral discs (IVD) were preserved. The spines were dissected into functional spinal units (two vertebrae and one IVD). The upper half of superior vertebra and the lower half of the inferior vertebra were embedded in two-part polyurethane resin (Smooth-Cast® 300, Pennsylvania, USA). The biomechanical ROM study was carried out by using an eight axis MTS Bionix Servo Hydraulic Test System. Each functional spinal unit (FSU) was tested at a continuous rate of 1.7°/s. Four preconditioning cycles were applied while the fifth cycle was analysed. All directions (flexion/extension, lateral bending left/right and axial rotation left/right) were tested by pure bending loads of ±7.5 Nm.

Figure 3: ROM Graph (top), comparison of L3-L4 flexion/extension (bottom left) and lateral bending (bottom right)

DISCUSSION & FUTURE WORK At the thoracolumbar junction, red deer (age 20 – 27 months) are similar anatomically [Kumar 2000, Sheng 2010], biomechanically [Kumar 2002] and the bone mineral density (BMD) is similar to human BMD; L1 T-Score is 0.6 [Kumar 2000]. In recent years, the population of red deer has declined and with this reduction, other animal models will be required [Deer Alliance 2005]. From testing, it was observed that: 1. Sika deer lower thoracic vertebrae were anatomically smaller than human. 2. Measured porcine mid-thoracic vertebrae were comparable to human vertebrae [Busscher 2010]. 3. For the L3-L4 region, the biomechanical flexion/extension and lateral bending range of motions of the sika deer were very similar to the red deer. 4. The porcine biomechanical flexion/extension and lateral bending range of motions were similar to a publish porcine biomechanical study. [Wilke 2011]. 5. In a comparison of animal to human, the sika deer was comparable in flexion extension but not in lateral bending while the porcine model was comparable in lateral bending but not in flexion extension. Future research will involve continuing the anatomical and biomechanical ROM comparison of porcine, sika deer and fallow deer to human. On conclusion of this prestudy, an animal vertebra will be selected as a comparison to human L1 vertebra. An unstable burst fracture will be induced into the animal vertebra. This induced fracture will be compared to human L1 fractured vertebra. The fractured animal vertebra will be treated with kyphoplasty/screws and rods technique and analysed. With the comparison of animal vertebrae to human vertebrae anatomically and biomechanically, the comparison of human and animal burst fractures and the treatment of the burst fractures validated, this study could give a good indication of how human biomechanical movements would behave pre-fracture, post-fracture and post-surgery.

Figure 2: MTS Bionix Servo Hydraulic Test System (L) and Biomechanical ROM test of porcine L3-L4 (R)

ACKNOWLODGEMENTS Funded by ITT Dublin President’s Award

“Our vision is to provide biomedical research with an emphasis on improving human health and quality of life by applying engineering principles to medical problems that will ultimately lead to innovative applications in clinical practice.”

Bernard Lawless. Bioengineering Technology Centre, ITT Dublin.


Bacterial Lung Pathogens SUMMARY/ABSTRACT Gram negative bacteria are associated with a number of respiratory illnesses. Infection in immuno-compromised patients is difficult to prevent and is further compounded by the ability of the bacteria to adapt to the host environment. Elucidating the precise mechanisms by which bacteria interact with the host immune system and how this interaction evolves throughout infection will facilitate the discovery of an effective treatment for bacterial eradication. The primary objectives of this project are to investigate the mechanisms by which the Gram negative bacteria Burkholderia cenocepacia contributes to morbidity and mortality in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients..

One cellular component of Gram negative bacteria which contributes to their ability to infect and persist within the host lung is lipopolysaccharide (LPS). LPS forms part of the structure of the outer leaflet of the outer membrane of Gram negative bacteria. LPS elicits a strong host immune response, the extent of which is species and strain specific and contributes to the severe inflammation observed in chronically infected patients. LPS, in addition to its role in bacterial virulence, is also required for bacterial survival. The structural integrity of the bacterial membrane is compromised in the absence of LPS therefore, it is critical to elucidate both the biosynthesis of LPS and the mechanisms by which it engages the host immune system. Efforts are underway to isolate LPS from the B. cenocepacia sequential clonal isolates to determine the potential role of this molecule in bacterial adaptation.

IL-6

We are investigating 4 sequential clonal isolates from the same CF patient (Sá Correia group, IST, Lisbon) to determine the biological significance of bacterial adaptation between the time of initial infection and patient death 3.5 years later. Using a range of in vitro and in vivo models, we are investigating potential adaptation of this species to host colonisation and how the host immune system may be also modulate in response to bacterial adaptation.

IL-8

Epithelial cells

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

LPS induce epithelial cells to secrete proinflammatory mediators

TNF-α IL-1β

Intitial experiments focused on the enzyme neutrophil elatase (NE), which is produced by polymorphonuclear cells in response to infection. NE is a powerful tool in the host innate immune response arsenal and is a key contributor to the eradication of bacterial infection in otherwise healthy individuals. Problems occur when the bacteria cannot be erradicated by either the host immune system or the admisistrarion of anti-microbial therapies. In such cases, the immune system is in a constant state of activation, a consequence of which is the presence of large amounts of NE in the respiratory tracts of infected individuals. This damages the tissues of the lungs and contributes to patient morbidity. We have demonstrated that the earliest B. cenocepacia isolate induced a significantly greater concentration of NE from differentiated HL60 cells than the three later isolates (Figure 1). There was no significant difference in induced NE activity between the three later isolates. This indicates an alteration to the bacterial cell during the course of infection. Identification of this bacterial component will provide further insight into this modified response and what advantage it confer upon the bacteria, if any.

***

Gram negative bacterial cell wall

The biological data from the LPS studies will be analysed in conjunction with the structural data of the molecules to further define the specific role of LPS in chronic infection. Understanding the molecular mechanisms of the adaptative responses to B. cenocepacia will provide new opportunities to effectively target this probelematic species in CF.

ACKNOWLEDGM ENTS ns

Funding: IRCSET funded Supervisor: Dr. Máire Callaghan, ITT Dublin

Luke.mcguigan@postgrad.ittdublin.ie; Maire.callaghan@ittdublin.ie


Breast Ultrasound Training Device PROBLEM / MARKET NEED Medical Ultrasound provides real-time anatomical images of soft tissue and it is frequently used to distinguish between benign and malignant lesions, particularly in breast ultrasound examinations. The detection and diagnosis of a lesion during a breast ultrasound examination is highly dependent on the training, experience and skill of the operator (radiologist and sonographer), therefore there is an increasing need for the operator to be appropriately trained and certified as being competent in the area. Every year 62,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in the US, and breast ultrasound imaging is increasingly being considered an important diagnostic tool in the fight against this dreaded disease. However, if the operator is not sufficiently trained or skilled in the operation of the ultrasound scanner, there is a risk of them not detecting all the lesions in the breast, which is potentially detrimental for the patient. Simulation training in medicine provides a realistic but ethically uncomplicated training approach for breast ultrasound training, so long as an appropriately challenging physical simulation device is used. The approach of simulation training has witnessed major leaps in the past few years particularly, in the area of surgical training and there is increasing evidence to demonstrate its role as an appropriate training approach. In the area of breast ultrasound training there is currently one such anthropomorphic breast ultrasound phantom by Kyoto Kagaku, however, this device is not sufficiently challenging in terms of the physical structures and the size and complexity of the lesions.

Ultrasound image of the anthropomorphic breast ultrasound phantom with malignant pathology

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION Researchers from the School of Physics in DIT and the Centre for Advanced medical Imaging in St James’s Hospital have developed an advanced tool for training radiologists and sonographers in breast ultrasound imaging. The anthropomorphic breast ultrasound phantom is a model of the breast that has been devised to be used in conjunction with a specially designed training protocol, wherein radiologists or sonographers are presented with three different phantoms which represent the complex anatomy of the breast, as well as each containing different numbers, location, and types of pathologies. Users are assessed on the basis of their improvement using a scoring system which involves allocating scores based on the correct identification and diagnosis of the various pathologies. The key characteristics of the DIT Anthropomorphic Breast Ultrasound Phantom are: • It provides a highly accurate simulation of the characteristics of a diverse range of breast tissue • Can be used to provide a physical simulation of the breast allowing the operator to gain the necessary hand to eye coordination skills in a pseudo-clinical setting • Excellent teaching and training tool for allowing the operator to become skilled in the use of the ultrasound scanner without the associated ethical issues • Can provide an objective clinical competency assessment and determine improvements in clinical competency with training

PREFERRED ROUTE TO COMMERCIALISATION Seeking to license technology or to carry out further development in close collaboration with an industry partner. Completed a Commercialisation Feasibility Project supported by Enterprise Ireland and have identified possibilities to further develop the concept of this anthropomorphic training phantom to other medically sensitive applications.

IP POSITION IP assigned to DIT. Technology available for licensing.

Dr Jacinta Browne – jacinta.browne@dit.ie


The Development Of Paediatric Synthetic Spine SUMMARY

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

Scoliosis is the abnormal curvature of the spine to the sides. People of all ages can develop scoliosis but it is more prevalent in adolescents. Scoliosis treatment can be divided into monitoring, bracing or casting and surgery based on the severity of the curvature and the age of a person. In 2008, C.J. Goldberg et al reviewed records from a school-screening programme in Ireland and showed that, slight degrees of spinal curvature were widely prevalent with 8 in 10,000 adolescent girls suffering from severe curvature and half required surgical correction. The aim of this research is to characterise the correction forces acting on the vertebrae by using paediatric synthetic spine.

Degrees in all direction were within the range from Wilke et al.,2011 however, T6T7 from this study was more flexible compared to Wilke et al.,2011 The total ROM were then compared with human ROM by White and Panjabi,1990. Generally porcine has more flexibility compared to human and the degrees increased from flexion extension to axial rotation. In this research, the degree increased for all FSU except for T4-T5.

a

b Figure 3: (a)Typical hysteresis curve for ROM determined in this research. (b) Hysteresis curve of paediatric synthetic model.

Figure 1: An illustration of normal and scoliosis spine. http://www.texashealth.org/body.cfm?id=3576

T4-T5

T5-T6

Axial R

MATERIALS AND METHODS Initially a simple paediatric synthetic spine consisting of vertebrae and discs were created. A more complex model was developed to include ligaments. However both models range of motion (ROM) presented incompatible results compared to human ROM from literature. [Panjabi and White, (1990)] The current model was designed and developed to include more appropriate materials. These synthetic materials were analysed to see if they compared favourably both physically and mechanically with human spine. (Refer figure 2) Four functional spinal unit (FSU) of paediatric synthetic spine from T4T8 were developed and their ROM were tested using MTS Bionix ServoHydraulic System spine simulator. Porcine spine model (6 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 7 years old) of the same FSU were also tested for ROM to compare the results with synthetic model. All model were tested at 5 cycles and the first two cycles considered as pre-cycle. Six range of motions were tested; flexion, extension, lateral bending right and left, axial rotation right and left. The ROM were determined from the hysteresis curve plotted for each loading direction. It was defined as the deformation at maximum load. (Refer figure 3)

T6-T7

Axial R

Panjabi (H)

Lateral B

Axial R

Panjabi (H)

Lateral B

4

6 8 10 12 Displacement (Degree)

14

16

Panjabi (H)

Lateral B

Panjabi (H)

Lateral B

Wilke (P)

Wilke (P)

Wilke (P)

Nor (P)

Nor (P)

Nor (P)

Nor (P)

18

Flex/Ext

Flex/Ext

Flex/Ext

2

Axial R

Wilke (P)

Flex/Ext

0

T7-T8

0

2

4

6 8 10 12 Displacement (Degree)

14

16

18

0

2

4

6

8 10 12 Displacement (Degree)

14

16

18

0

2

4

6

8 10 12 Displacement (Degree)

14

16

Figure 4: Comparison of ROM from this study with literature from T4-T8. Comparison of total ROM with White and Panjabi [7] for human and Wilke et al [6] for porcine.

Paediatric synthetic models were tested for each FSU from T4-T8. The models were tested up to 7.5 Nm and the models started to fail at at 6 Nm therefore, the valid results were only from 1 Nm to 5 Nm. The characteristic curve plotted of ROM for synthetic model was similar to the porcine model. The sigmoidal represent the nonlinearity of single joint segment. (Refer figure 3) In comparison with human data for 4 Nm, the synthetic spine was more flexible in lateral bending but stiffer in axial rotation and flexion extension but the range obtained from synthetic were in agreement with range obtained from Iris et al.,2010 (Refer figure 5)

Figure 5: Total ROM comparison between paediatric synthetic model with Iris et al [8] for human at 4 Nm.

FUTURE WORK a

b

c

Figure 2: The development of paediatric synthetic spine from (a) first model consisted of vertebrae and discs (b) Second model consisted of vertebrae, discs and ligaments (c) Current model consisted of vertebrae, discs and ligaments with improved materials.

18

Based on results plotted, paediatric synthetic model showed promising data as the curve pattern presents the nonlinearities of the model and the range of ROM obtained was within the literature. The data required further analysation as most of human data from literatures were for adult. Adult ROM did not represent children ROM because the anatomical structure and materials properties were different between children and adult. The results will be compared with finite element model and then scoliotic model will be developed to characterise the correction forces.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT This research has been supported under the Technological Research Strand 1, Institute of Technology Ireland, the Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE), Malaysia and the University Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP), Malaysia. Our vision is to provide excellent biomedical research with an emphasis on improving human health and quality of life by applying engineering principles to medical problems that will ultimately lead to innovative applications in clinical practice.

Nor Amalina Muhayudin, Bioengineering Technology Centre, ITT Dublin


Communications Network Research Institute (CNRI) KEY ACHIEVEMENTS •Research funding secured to date over €2.9 million •3 PhD graduates •6 MPhil graduates •2 patents awarded (WLAN Probe) • EPO patent (EP1608104) granted January 2008. • US PTO patent (US 7664031) granted February 2010. •1 startup company (Optiwifi) •1 patent filing (Realtime VoIP Call Quality Estimator) • British Patent Office filing (Application 0921806.6) December 2010. •8 licenses •6 invention disclosures • WLAN Resource Monitor • WLAN Resource Controller • EQUAL (VoIP Call Quality Estimator) • VIDAS (Statistical Video Quality Analyzer)

RESEARCH INTERESTS The Communications Network Research Institute (CNRI) specialises in developing innovative technologies to support the delivery of real-time services such as VoIP and video streaming on wireless networks, specifically IEEE 802.11 WLAN (or more popularly known as Wi-Fi ) networks. To this end the CNRI has adopted a cross-layer philosophy where we seek to use information obtained at one particular layer in the communications protocol stack to support and enhance the operation at another layer. To date, the CNRI has addressed a number of the challenges for WLAN mesh networks where it has investigated resource aware routing techniques, passive measurements of the characteristics of IEEE 802.11 wireless links, interference mitigation, multi-radio hardware platforms, rate selection, output power optimization, and fragmentation threshold tuning. Currently, the CNRI is conducting projects in the area of optimizing VoIP call quality, mobile data offload, packet aggregation to improve network throughput, dynamic channel selection on WLAN networks, and detecting DDoS attacks on WLAN mesh networks.

TEAM

• ConTPC (Conservative Transmit Power Control) • WLAN Link Adaptation

KEY PUBLICATIONS • Miroslaw Narbutt, The E-model based quality contours for predicting speech transmission quality and user satisfaction from time-varying transmission impairments, ITU-T Recommendation G.109 Appendix I, January 2007. • Miroslaw Narbutt et al., Adaptive VoIP Playout Scheduling: Assessing User Satisfaction, IEEE Internet Computing Magazine, July/August 2005. • Mark Davis, Tristan Raimondi, A Novel Framework for Radio Resource Management in IEEE 802.11 Wireless LANs, International Symposium on Modeling and Optimization in Mobile, Ad Hoc, and Wireless Networks (WiOpt’05), April 2005, Riva del Garda, Trentino, Italy • Mark Davis, A Wireless Traffic Probe for Radio Resource Management and QoS Provisioning in IEEE 802.11 WLANs, ACM Symposium on Modeling, Analysis and Simulation of Wireless and Mobile Systems (MSWiM’04), October, 2004, Venezia, Italy.

Dr. Mark Davis

Director

CONTACT DETAILS

Dr. Miroslaw Narbutt

Postdoctoral Researcher (VoIP telephony)

Dr. Mark Davis CNRI Office, FOCAS Institute, DIT Kevin Street, Dublin 8.

Dr. Tanmoy Debnath

Postdoctoral Researcher (Video streaming)

Tel: +353-1-402 7950 Fax: +353-1-4027901

Dr. Mustafa Ramadhan

Postdoctoral Researcher (Mesh routing)

Jianhua Deng

PhD student (Packet aggregation)

Email: mark.davis@dit.ie Web site: www.cnri.dit.ie

Fuhu Deng

PhD student (Dynamic channel selection)

Yi Ding

PhD student (Detecting DDoS attacks)

Dr. Mark Davis, +353-1-402 7950 or mark.davis@dit.ie


Enhanced QUALity (EQUAL) VoIP PROBLEM / MARKET NEED

COMMERCIALISATION

In recent years the telecommunications industry has witnessed the emergence of packet-based or voice over IP (VoIP) communication. However, despite the widespread take up of these new systems there still remains concerns regarding the quality of service (QoS) afforded by these systems. The source of these QoS concerns lies in the nature of the underlying IP network which is usually characterized as best-effort and consequently suffers from transmission impairments such as loss, delay and delay variations. In VoIP systems, large delay variations (jitter) hinder the proper reconstruction of the speech signal at the receiver. In order to compensate for jitter, a typical VoIP application buffers the incoming voice packets before playing them out. This allows slower packets to arrive on time in order to be played out. However, if the buffering delay is too short, the slower packets will not arrive before their designated playout time and are effectively lost causing the voice quality to suffer. On the other hand, if the buffering delay is too long, it impacts on the interactivity of the speech communication. Consequently, there is a trade off between packet loss and delay and one of the major challenges in VoIP systems is to find the optimal operating point that maximizes the conversational speech quality.

The commercialization route envisaged for the VoIP optimisation software is primarily through licensing although the formation of a start-up company may be an alternative route should it emerge as a more compelling option. EQUAL technology is protected through a patent filing which further enhances its licensing potential. Currently, Dublin Institute of Technology is seeking companies such as VoIP service providers, network operators, and networking equipment manufacturers to license the EQUAL technology. DIT has already signed a contract with one global VoIP service provider to integrate this technology with a number of commercial softphones.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION Researchers at DIT have developed a method that estimates user satisfaction regarding VoIP transmission quality based upon objectively measurable metrics (i.e. transmission impairments such as packet delay and loss). This method has been adopted by the ITU-T as Appendix I to the ITU-T G.109 Recommendation and consequently now enjoys a standards acceptance. VoIP optimisation software is a real time implementation of this method in VoIP terminals and provides predictions of user satisfaction.These predictions are used as the input to any adaptive tuning scheme that seeks to optimize VoIP transmission quality. The technology can also be used for VoIP transmission quality monitoring, pre-deployment testing, and network troubleshooting. VoIP optimisation software has been successfully integrated with a real VoIP softphone (PJSIP) that can run under Windows, Linux, and Symbian OS. The software seeks to find the optimal operating point between packet loss and packet delay that minimises the effect of transmission impairments and thus maximises user satisfaction. The improvement in quality is comparable with that between mobile (MOS=3.9) and landline telephony (MOS=4.3). Furthermore, a particularly attractive feature of this tool is that it is based upon a method that has been accepted as part of an ITU-T Recommendation G.109.

EQUAL+ comprises software modules designed for easy integration in VoIP endpoints, i.e. soft-phones, IP phones, and VoIP gateways. For more information, please visit:

http://www.cnri.dit.ie/research.multimedia.equal.html

IP POSITION The technology is protected by a patent application, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Real-Time VoIP Transmission Quality Predictor and Quality Driven Adaptive Playout Bufferâ&#x20AC;?, UK Patent Office, (GB 0921806.6);

Dr. Miroslaw Narbutt, +353-1-402 7959 or narbutt@cnri.dit.ie


Performance of Wi-Fi Networks PROBLEM / MARKET NEED

COMMERCIALISATION

The explosion in the growth of mobile broadband data is being described by mobile network operators (MNOs) as a â&#x20AC;&#x153;data tsunamiâ&#x20AC;? that is threatening to overwhelm 3G networks. This growth in traffic has been attributed to the advent of the smartphone and the popularity of video applications. Already some mobile networks are crumbling under the increased traffic, particularly in densely populated urban areas. Moreover, the next generation of 4G (e.g. LTE/LTE+) networks are unlikely to meet the exponentially growing demand for capacity. MNOs desperately need solutions that help them reduce network congestion.

The OptiWifi solution is currently being commercialized through a startup company called OptiWi-fi.

MNOs are increasingly relying on mobile data offload to fixed wireless networks to alleviate their traffic congestion problems and Wi-Fi is rapidly becoming the dominant wireless technology for mobile data offload. However, currently Wi-Fi cannot reliably support quality of service (QoS) with video traffic being particularly problematic owing to its large bandwidth requirements coupled with the QoS expectations of end users.

A feasibility study was undertaken prior to the Commercialisation Fund project that sought to identify the commercial opportunity presented by this technology and to clarify the IP landscape surrounding the technology. This study concluded that there is a clear commercial opportunity for the OptiWi-fi solution in the mobile data offload space.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION The CNRI has developed a piece of Wi-Fi optimization technology (OptiWifi) that leverages the IEEE 802.11e/WMM QoS enhancement functionality that is now a standard feature in all modern Wi-Fi equipment. The OptiWifi solution is based upon an mathematical framework that accurately models this complex relationship. This mathematical framework is the basis of control algorithm that has been incorporated into a bandwidth/QoS provisioning application. The unique feature of the OptiWifi solution is that it adaptively adjusts the configuration parameters in response to changing traffic load conditions in order to deliver the required bandwidth/QoS. The OptiWifi solution can increase the volume and reliability of mobile data delivered across Wi-Fi networks. The OptiWifi solution allows service providers manage their Wi-Fi networks with far greater certainty than currently exists. This will provide for greater assurance in managing the QoS experienced by users.

A number of preliminary trials of the OptiWifi solution have already taken place on public Wi-Fi networks or hotspots. The results from these trials have indicated a clear improvement in the performance of the hotspot in terms of a dramatic reduction in the level of bandwidth congestion being experienced by users. For more information, please visit http://www.cnri.dit.ie/research.wrrm.html

IP POSITION The technology underpinning the OptiWifi solution is protected by a patent US PTO No. 7664031 (granted February 2010) that covers the mathematical framework that models the interactions of the various WLAN processes and that lies at the heart of the control algorithm.

Dr. Mark Davis, +353-1-402 7950 or mark.davis@dit.ie


CREST KEY ACHIEVEMENTS CREST accounted for 10% of the national total of all third level commercial licences and assignments to industry in 2011. Only Irish exhibitors at the first EU Innovation Convention in Brussels Dec. 2011 CREST funding history 2004-2012: >€7M with >€1m from industry. Secured international recognition with three FP7 awards since 2010, one of which involves two Irish SME’s in FP7 for the first time.

Bringing Innovation to the Surface

CENTRE ACTIVITIES The Centre for Research in Surface Engineering Technology (CREST) is a DIT designated research centre based in the Focas research institute that successfully provides the link between research and production. As the only dedicated surface coatings laboratory in Ireland, it serves the SMART economy by means of translating in-house fundamental knowledge from the bench-top to the market. The CREST model relies on an expert and professional coatings consultancy service to front-face its activity with over 60 years combined commercial surface coating experience. In addition to its consultancy service, CREST engages in collaborative projects with industries throughout Europe successfully securing funding from agencies including Enterprise Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland and the EU Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). Companies with a commitment to develop an innovative technology work with CREST in areas such as hygiene & corrosion control and photocatalysis. In partnership with these R&D-active companies, CREST has actively demonstrated technology translation by means of licensing to Irish manufacturing companies.

TEAM Prof. Declan Mc Cormack , Academic Director Dr. Brendan Duffy, Senior Research Manager

Successful in the US-Ireland project, co-funded by SFI, Invest NI and NSF, USA (total value 1 million). Ten companies involved in Innovation Partnerships in 2011-2012. Recipient of four Enterprise Ireland Commercialisation Awards and four DIT Hothouse Commercialisation Awards in 2011. Sixteen license agreements with two commercial products in the market (HyGen, Lo-Noise).

RECENT PUBLICATIONS M. Whelan, K. Barton, J. Cassidy, J. Colreavy, B. Duffy, Corrosion Inhibitors for Anodised Aluminium, Surface and Coatings Technology, 227 (2013) 7583.

D. W Synnott, M. K. Seery, Steven J Hinder, John Colreavy and Suresh C Pillai, Novel Microwave Synthesis of ZnS nanomaterials, Nanotechnology, 24, 2013, 45704. S. Jaiswal, et al., Preparation and rapid analysis of antibacterial silver, copper and zinc doped sol–gel surfaces, Colloids Surf. B: Biointerfaces (2012), doi:10.1016/j.colsurfb.2012.01.035 Nolan, T., Synnot, D., Seery, M., Hinder, S., Van Wassenhaven, A., Pillai, S.:Effect of N-Doping on the Photocatalytic Activity of Sol–Gel TiO2. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 211-212, 2012, p.88-94.

Dr. Suresh Pillai, Senior Research Manager Dr. Nigel Leyland, Research Scientist Dr. Joanna Carroll, Research Scientist Dr. Swarna Jaiswal, Research Scientist Mr. Paul Quinn, Senior Associate Consultant

CONTACT DETAILS Dr. Brendan Duffy t: 01-4027964 e: brendan.duffy@dit.ie w: www.crestdit.com CREST, Focas Institute, DIT Kevin St., Camden Row, Dublin 8

Mr. Michael Whelan, PhD Student Mr. Garrett Melia, PhD Student Mr. Craig Hicks, PhD Student Ms. Rachel Fagan, PhD Student Ms. Felicia Mutuma, PhD Student

Dr Brendan Duffy: bduffy@dit.ie


CREST Consultancy SERVICES

ISO 9001:2008 ACCREDITED

CREST offers a professional consultancy service and engages with up to one hundred companies/agencies in any one year with over 600 industrial engagements since 2003. CREST works with a wide range of companies from SMEs to multinationals with an expertise in surface treatment and material characterisation that comply with the requirements of international standards

CREST operates within an ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System to guarantee consistent and reliable project delivery. The adoption of the standard provides a consistent framework for developing processes and a quality system that strives for continual improvement, business growth and both customer and employee satisfaction.

(ISO, BS, EN and ASTM). Capabilities range from technical inspection, specification, fit-for-purpose validation, corrosion control and hygiene control to the development of novel surface coating solutions for diverse industries.

ANALYTICAL FACILITIES Accelerated exposure analysis – durability/weathering Physical analysis – hardness, impact, adhesion, scratch etc. Paint application, dispersion and cure Surface area analysis Viscometry Microscopy – FESEM, AFM Spectroscopy – UV-Vis, FTIR, Raman, GC MS Material characterization - XRD and DSC & TGA CREST recently acquired an openair plasma system from PlasmaTreat with 1KW plasma generator and rotating jet

MISSION Our

mission

is

to

provide

new

opportunities

for

Ireland’s

economic growth through superior customer service, excellence in innovation, consultancy, education and training in surface coating and advanced material technologies

EXPERTISE Sol-gel coatings and testing Solvent, water-borne and powder coatings Metallic and inorganic coatings Physical & chemical testing Specification & validation

BRINGING INNOVATION TO THE SURFACE

Technical support Innovation through R&D

Dr Brendan Duffy bduffy@dit.ie


Ferrocene Derived Mediators SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

Abnormal levels of glucose and glutamate can be indicative of many medical conditions. In this work, glucose and glutamate detection at physiological levels were facilitated by glucose oxidase and glutamate oxidase based biosensors respectively. These deposited enzymes normally convert their substrates to hydrogen peroxide which is detected electrochemically on Pt at +0.7 V vs. Ag/AgCl. The primary aim of this research is to incorporate novel mediators into the system to replace the role of oxygen in regeneration of the FAD enzyme groups, enabling amperometric detection at lower operating potentials. The series of ferrocene mediators, allylcarbamoylferrocene, ((allylamino)methyl)ferrocene and ((6-(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)hexylamino)methyl)ferrocene synthesised in this work are tested in solution (1 mM) for their electrocatalytic behaviour towards both glucose and glutamate oxidase. An appropriate immobilisation strategy will facilitate surface confinement together with the enzymes and development of a reagentless sensing device.

The successful synthesis and characterization of new ferrocene derivatives and (6-(4(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)phenoxy)hexyl) ferrocene (1) and ((4-(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)phenoxy)- carbonyl) ferrocene (2) was achieved followed by their immobilization as redox active films by coelectrodeposition with pyrrole. To our knowledge, this is the first such report based on these short and long chain ferrocene derivatives with optimization of growth conditions and thin film evaluation. Film growth using potential sweeping was found to be most suitable for adherent film formation with well-defined redox electrochemistry and surface confined behavior. These functionalized polypyrrole materials were easy to deposit from non-aqueous electrolytes and have potential applications in electronic or sensor devices. Understanding key factors that control electron transfer and charge trans-port through such polymeric films is an important step in their evaluation as functioning sensor elements. Such hybrid materials combine the electronic conductivity of conducting polymers with the redox properties of metal complexes with the potential to mediate electron transfer reactions. A key feature is metal co-ordination directly to the conjugated polymer backbone, facilitating electronic interaction between the electroactive metal centers and the polymer backbone (Pickup 1999). The materials described here have potential electrocatalytic applications in non-aqueous environments, such as determination of poor water soluble pollutants

Fe

New ferrocene derivatives, ((4-(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)phenoxy)carbonyl) ferrocene (4) and (6-(4-(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)phenoxy)hexyl) ferrocene (7) were synthesised, characterised and electrochemically evaluated as redox active films formed via anodic oxidation with pyrrole. Thin film studies were conducted and films formed from both compounds resulted in a stable Fe II/III redox couple with Eo = 0.04V and 0.36V vs. Ag/Ag+ for (7) and (4) respectively. Both potential sweeping and chronocoulometry were employed for film formation with the former resulting in controllable, reproducible film deposition. Growth conditions and solution concentrations were varied in the case of both compounds in order to assess influence on electrochemical behavior. Surface coverage’s were of the order 108-10-9 mol cm-2, surface confined behavior (ip vs. n) was evident up to 0.2 V s-1 with semi-infinite diffusion (ip vs. n1/2) dominating at higher scan rates. Laviron theory was employed where possible for the determination of electron transfer co-efficient and rate constants.

Summary of Data Compound

Linear Range (mM)

2

R

Km (mM)

Imax (A)

Sensitivity (µA mM-1)

O N H Fe

N H Fe

1 - 35 1 - 62

0.999 0.996

117 54

6x10 9x10

-5

-6

7.159e 3.584e

-7

-7

15 1 mM Fc derivative in 0.1 M PBS (0.1 M KCl) 10 mM L-glutamate 20 mM L-glutamate 30 mM L-glutamate

10

5

N H Fe

35 -6

20

40

Current / 1e A

3a

N H

-6

Current / 1e A

O

3b

30

3c

10

20 15 10 5

1 mM Fc derivative in 0.1 M PBS (0.1 M KCl) 10 mM L-glutamate 20 mM L-glutamate 30 mM L-glutamate 40 mM L-glutamate

0 -5

0

12

25

-6

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

45

25

Current / 1e A

Synthesis, co-polymerisation and electrochemical evaluation of novel ferrocenepyrrole derivatives, Soon, G., Deasy, M., Dempsey, E., Worsfold, O., Analytical Letters, 2011, 44 (11), pp 1976-1995.

8 6 4

1 mM Fc derivative in 0.1 M PBS (0.1 M KCl) 10 mM L-glutamate 20 mM L-glutamate 30 mM L-glutamate

2 N

N H

0 Fe

0.0

0.0

0.2

0.4

0.6

0.8

0.2

0.4

Potential / V

Potential / V

0.6

0.8

-2 0.0

0.2

0.4

0.6

0.8

1.0

1.2

Potential / V

Electrocatalytic response to L-glutamate additions for (a) allylcarbamoylferrocene, (b) ((allylamino)methyl)ferrocene and (c) ((6-(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)hexylamino)methyl)ferrocene over the range 0 – 40 mM at a glassy carbon electrode modified with 3.3 U glutamate oxidase by crosslinking with 1.65 µL Nafion (5%) and 3.3 µL glutaraldehyde (25%) using cyclic voltammetry in 0.1 M PBS pH 7.0 containing 0.1 M KCl at 10 mV/sec vs. Ag/AgCl. Additional development could employ mixed metal complex co-deposition for electrocatalytic applications requiring multiple electronic steps. Further work in our group is focused on the synthesis and deposition of new hydrophilic ferrocene pyrrole=thiophene derivatives. The extension of the methodology will include electro-entrapment of oxidase enzymes into well characterized polymer matrices bearing redox functionalities and subsequent evaluation of their mediating properties.

TEAM FUNDERS Team: Project Supervisors - Prof. E. Dempsey; Dr. M. Deasy; PhD Student - Geok Hong Soon MiCRA is funded by Enterprise Ireland under the Applied Research Enhancement Programme.

Dr. M. Deasy ITT Dublin mary.deasy@ittdublin.ie


V of A and B for the monolayer Langmuir film and a layer of LB film. The errors in these measurements were approximately 2%.

Micra Langmuir Blodgett SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

The binding interactions between aqueous copper (Cu2+) and lithium (Li+) ions and Langmuir monolayers and Langmuir-Blodgett multilayers have been investigated by studying surface pressure- area ( -A) isotherms and surface potential –area ( -A) behaviour in order to find the effective dipole moment of the calixarene molecules in the uncomplexed and complexed states. The orientation of both calix[4]arenes is such that the plane of the calix ring is parallel with the plane of the water surface regardless of the ion-content of the subphase. The Gibbs equation was used to interpret the adsorption of ions with both calix[4]arenes as a function of the concentration and surface collapse pressure. Effective dipole moments have been calculated from surface potential values using the Helmholtz equation. Effective dipole moments have been calculated from surface potential values using the Helmholtz equation. In this work, new LB films have been prepared employing two novel amphiphilic calix[4]arene derivatives bearing different upper rim substituents. Thus, the effect of modifiying the upper rim has been observed. The results have shown that these calixarenes may be useful components of ion sensors.

The binding interactions between Cu2+ and Li+ ions (aqueous)and two calix[4]arenes, namely, 5,11,17,23-tetra-tert-butyl-25,27-diethoxycarbonyl methyleneoxy-26,28dihydroxycalix[4]arene (materialA) and 5,17-(9H-fluoren-2-yl)methyleneamino)-11,23ditert-butyl-25,27-diethoxycarbonyl methyleneoxy-26,28-dihydroxycalix[4]arene (material B), have been investigated. The surface pressure-area isotherms reveal that the limiting areas per molecule lie in the range 1.9-2.5 nm2 (depending on subphase conditions) which is consistent with an orientation in which the plane of the calixarene ring is parallel to the plane of the water surface. Material Bs hows the strongest interaction with Cu2+ and Li+ ions when both area per molecule data and effective dipole moment data are considered. The effective dipole moment measured for B is significantly larger than that of A owing to its highly conjugated fluorenemethylamino system. Furthermore, simple nonconjugated calix[4]arenes investigated by others possessed lower effective dipole moments than those of materials A and B.

F.L. Supian, T.H. Richardson, M. Deasy, F. Kelleher, J.P. Ward, V. McKee, Langmuir, 2010, 26 (13), pp 10906–10912.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE New caliixarene compounds were synthesised and have been found to be selective binder for Copper and Lithium ions , when embedded into LB Films.

A

LB deposition is successful for A and B, but some of the molecular ordering is lost as a result of the transfer onto solid substrates, since themeasured surface potentials reduce (typically by 30-50%) for the LB film compared to the floating Langmuir layer. Furthermore, 5 layer LB films exhibit a lower surface potential than the monolayer LB films, suggesting that multilayered films become increasingly disordered. Future work will examine the interaction of these and other similar calix[4]arenes with a range of mono-, di-, and trivalent cations in order to assess the binding capability of LB films of these materials which may find application in ion-contamination measurements within aqueous environments.

B

Subphase

Air/water interface (mV)

LB film (mV)

LB film (mV)

1 layer

5 layer

Air/water interface (mV)

LB film (mV)

LB film (mV)

1 layer

5 layer

TEAM FUNDERS Team: Project Supervisors –Dr. F. Kelleher; Dr. M. Deasy; PhD Student – James Ward.

Water

230

152

87

330

226

120

Cu2+

305

167

99

362

266

150

Li+

272

157

91

334

255

122

F.L.S. wishes to acknowledge the Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI) and Government of Malaysia for the award of a scholarship which enabled her to undertake this work. J.P.W. wishes to thank the Postgraduate R&D Skills Programme, and ITT-Dublin’s PhD Continuation Fund for grant support.

Dr. M. Deasy ITT Dublin mary.deasy@ittdublin.ie


Synthesis of a New Class of Bridged Calixarenes SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

The syntheses of p-tert-butylcalix[4]tetrazolophane macrocycles, containing an n-alkylated p-tert-butyl calix[4]arene (n = 2,3 or 6) with an aromatic bis-tetrazole bridge at the lower rim are described. 1H NMR techniques such as (nOe-dif) were used to fully characterise one of the macrocycles and the crystal structure of this same macrocycle is also discussed. Preliminary complexation work with a series of different transition metal ions was carried out. A positive result with Cu(I) and one of the macrocycles was observed with the 1H NMR displaying the change going from ‘host’ to complex.

In this paper we described the synthesis and characterisation of lower rim alkylated p-tert-butylcalix[4]arene using a bromoalkyl chain, where the chain contains either 2,3 or 6 carbon atoms. These precursors to the macromolecules were then reacted with chosen aromatic tetrazole moiety. Each of these reactions provided interesting results as they were seen to be regioisomerically selective toward the symmetric isomer (2-N, 2-N'). None of the other isomers, the symmetric 1-N, 1-N' or asymmetric 1-N, 2-N had formed during the course of the reaction. One new macroacyclic compound, (12), and four new macrocycles (8, 9, 10, 11) were synthesised and the X-ray crystal structure of compound (9) showed the successful formation of the bridged lower rim via the attachment of the bistetrazole moiety. Advanced 1H NMR studies namely nOe were employed to help decipher the peculiar multiplicity seen for some of the signals in the 1 H NMR spectra and was also coupled with the X-ray studies to verify the final confirmation the calixarene was in.

Mary Deasya, Adrienne Fleminga, Aaron Martina, and Vickee McKeeb a

Department of Science, Institute of Technology Tallaght, Tallaght, Dublin 24, Ireland b

Department of Chemistry, Loughborough University, Leicestershire, UK

Early biological studies indicate these compounds may be of use as antimicrobial agents.

Corresponding author. Tel.: +353-872164269; e-mail: Aaron.martin@itnet.ie

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

Percentage growth MRSA versus concentration 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0

Vancomycin 3-081

Vancomycin MIC 80 30.50 mg/L

3-081 MIC 80 12.25 mg/L

0. 48 8 0. 28 97 1 6 1. 56 95 3 31 3. 25 90 62 7. 5 81 2 15 5 .6 25 31 .2 5 62 .5 12 5 25 0

Percentage growth

Macrocycles containing tetrazoles are a somewhat rare occurrence which is surprising considering their use as carboxylic acid bioisosteres in drug discovery. The development of ‘click’ chemistry methodology, as described by Sharpless et al., has resulted in a recent increase in tetrazole structures, which suggests that molecular recognition studies of tetrazoles will become increasingly important. Our interest in tetrazoles concerns their use as precursors for the formation of new macrocycles via the inclusion of them into a p-tert-butylcalix[4]arene framework to form a bridge at the lower rim of the p-tert-butylcalix[4]arene.

Concentration mg/L

This has resulted in the design and synthesis of a new family of macocycles (see below). 3-081 Versus MRSA 100 100 100

100 100 100

100 100 100

100

100

100

4

OH OH

O

80

survival percentage

(i) O

OH n

(1)

Br

Br N N N N H

N N

(4)

H N

(ii)

N N H

N N N H

(ii)

N

N

86.6

90

(5) n = 2 (6) n = 3 (7) n = 6

(ii) N

OH OH

O

O

73.3

70 60

53.3

50

50

24 hours 48 hours 72 hours

40

N

N

N

N

N N

N N

N

30 20

N

N N

N

(3)

10

N H

0 3-081

MIC 80

1/2 MIC 80

1/4 MIC 80

MRSA cells

(2) OH OH

O OH OH

O

OH OH

O

O

n N

n N N

N

N

N

N

N N

N

N

N

N

N

N

(8) n = 2 (9) n = 3 (10) n = 6

N N

(11)

Project Supervisors: A. Fleming, M. Deasy; PhD student – Aaron Martin.

N

N N

TEAM FUNDERS

N

N

N N

O

O

(12)

AM thanks Enterprise Ireland, the Postgraduate R&D Skills Programme, and ITTDublin’s PhD Continuation Fund for grant support.

Reaction conditions: i) 1,n-dibromoalkane (n = 2,3 or 6), potassium carbonate, acetonitrile, Δ, 7-24 hr; (ii) triethyl amine, acetonitrile, Δ, 24-65 hr.

Details Dr. M. Deasy ITTContact Dublin mary.deasy@ittdublin.ie


Novel Calixarene-Schiff Bases SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

Two novel calix[4]arene-Schiff base receptors have been synthesized. One of the new compounds has two pendant aldimines, while the second has been prepared by two-point attachment of a calixarene-dialdehyde onto a calixarene-diamine to form a “calix-tube”. Preliminary binding studies with AgClO4 show large complexation-induced shifts in 1H NMR positions.

We have prepared two novel Schiff base calix[4]arenes via convenient syntheses which should be easily generalized. The first (compound 3), with two 1,3-pendant imine functions, was obtained from tetra-t-buylcalix[4]arene in two steps. The second, a calix[4]-calix[4]-tube with 1,1’- and 3,3’-imine links (compound 6), also required two steps from the same reactant to produce its immediate precursors, and one further step to join them.

Keywords: calixarenes, Schiff base, silver, complexation

Preliminary complexation studies were carried out on the two new calixarene compounds, calix-Schiff (3) and calix-tube (6). The complexes were prepared by recrystallization from acetonitrile solutions that were equimolar in AgClO4.

B. S. Creaven, M. Deasy, P. M. Flood, J. McGinley, and B. A. Murray , “Inorganic Chemistry Communications, Volume 11, Issue 10, October 2008, Pages 1215-1220.

1H

NMR (below) indicated that many peaks were significantly shifted by silver(I) complexation, particularly the imine (HC=N: 8.27 to 8.37 ppm) and OH signals (7.76 to 7.94 ppm), with downfield movements also seen for both of the calixarene aromatic signals, the t-butyls, the calixarene methylene doublets (+0.07 and +0.10 ppm), and the aromatic signals derived from both the amine and the aldehyde, the latter also becoming noticeably broadened. There were some upfield shifts too: the methylene nearest the Schiff base (CH2OPhCH=N) moves -0.19 ppm. These changes indicate not merely that Ag+ has been bound, but that it has brought about a profound structural change affecting the whole molecule.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Calixarenes have proved popular building blocks for the development of highly specific synthetic receptors particularly for ionic guest species.1They have found widespread use in sensor technology, as sensing agents for various analytes. Calix[n]arenes are macrocyclic compounds in which phenolic units are linked via methylene bridging groups at their ortho positions. The spectacular development of these well defined macromolecular systems in recent years is related to the ease with which the upper (aryl) and lower (phenolic) rims have been modified in a stereocontrolled and regiocontrolled manner,1 coupled with the wide range of cationic and neutral guests they have been found to bind. New calixarene compounds have been synthesised that have preorganised binding sites,for binding to ionic guests. Scheme 2 Synthesis calix-tube (6)

Scheme 1 Synthesis of calix-dial (2) and calix-Schiff (3) + HO

2 OH

HO

2

O

OH

O

2 O

6'

N

5

H2N

6

NH2

2 OH

N

(4)

N

+

5'

4'

4

+

(1)

4

O

2'

(5) "Calix-Diamine"

O

5 6

2

HO

O

K2CO3 ,

CH3CN

Et3N, CH3OH

(2) "Calix-Dial"

Br

K2CO3 ,

O

2 OH

O

We intend to extend the binding studies to other metal cations, and in the case of calix-tube (6), the binding of a second (different) metal ion may be possible. More generally, there is considerable scope both to extend the range of imine structures accessible, and to further derivatize them.

H 2N

2 OH

O

N

4 OH

O

6

2

TEAM FUNDERS

4 O

5

4 2

6

N

O

5 2

6

OH

O

N

6'

2'

O

5

2

O

2

Project Supervisors: B. Creaven, M. Deasy, B.A. Murray; PhD student – Paul Flood.

(2) "Calix-Dial"

N

5' 4'

(3)"Calix-Schiff" (6) "Calix-Tube"

BAM & BSC acknowledge the Irish Higher Education Authority for its funding of the NCSR, including JMcG’s post-doctoral fellowship. PMF thanks Enterprise Ireland, the Postgraduate R&D Skills Programme, and ITT-Dublin’s PhD Continuation Fund for grant support.

Dr. M. Deasy ITT Dublin mary.deasy@ittdublin.ie


Silver Coumarin Complexes SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

A critical problem facing the biomaterials sector is how to retard growth and prevent biofilm formation on susceptible surfaces. Sol-gel coatings are chemically inert, stabile and homogeneous which can be designed to act as a reservoirs for releasing antimicrobial agents over extended time periods. In the present study, a series of silver coumarin complexes (AgC, Ag6, Ag7, Ag8) with proven antimicrobial activity were successfully synthesised, and incorporated into a sol-gel matrix. The comparative antibacterial activity of the doped sol-gel colloidal solutions was determined against meticillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and multidrug resistance Enterobacter cloacae WT6 (Figure 1). The percentage growth inhibitions were found in the range of 9.2 (± 2.7 ) - 66.0 (± 1.2) % at low silver loading 0.3% (w/w). with E. cloacae being the more susceptible. Results showed that among Ag coumarin complexes, Ag8 doped coating had the highest antibiofilm property (Figures 2 and 3).

• Silver(I) coumarin complexes possess excellent antimicrobial activity even though the ligands themselves are inactive.

• A series of silver coumarin complexes with proven antimicrobial activity has been successfully, synthesiised, purified and characterised.

•Related compounds have found applications in antimicrobial paints which are currently in use in two Irish hospitals. 100

80

(%) Biofilm Inhibition

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

•The antimicrobial activity of the complexes, which was initially demonstrated against planktonic bacteria, was observed when the complexes were incorporated into sol-gel coatings .

60

40

20

• Ag-coumarin complex coatings were evaluated for antibacterial efficacy. • ICP showed gradual release of Ag+ from the Ag-coumarin coating over extended periods (Figure 4). 9.0

Enterobacter WT6

9.0

MRSA ATCC 43300

8.5

8.5

Log CFU/ml

8.0 7.5 7.0 6.5 6.0

AgCCa AgCca6OH AgCca7OH AgCca8OH Control AgCCa AgCca6OH AgCca7OH AgCca8OH Control

8.0 7.5 LogCFU/ml

Ag(Cca) [Ag(6OHCca)] [Ag(7OHCca)] [Ag(8OHCca)] Control Ag(Cca) [Ag(6OHCca)] [Ag(7OHCca)] [Ag(8OHCca)] Control

7.0 6.5

0

0.3

0.5

0.7

Concentration of samples (%)

Figure. 3: Percentage inhibition of biofilm forming S.epidermidis CSF41498 in the presence of Ag-coumarin complexs Ag6, Ag7, Ag8, AgC and AgN with different concentrations (0.3%, 0.5% and 0.7 % (w/w)), after 4 days incubation.

6.0 5.5 5.0

5.5 0

5

10

15

20

25

0

Time (h)

5

10

15

20

25

Time(h)

Figure 1: Inactivation of the bacteria by coatings containing various Ag-complexes (control, AgC, Ag6, Ag7, Ag8 and AgN) at a concentration of 0.3% (w/w) over 24hr.

Control

Ag 8OHCca 0.5% (w/w)

Ag8OHCca 0.7% (w/w)

Figure 4: Non-cumulative release rates of Ag into fresh DI H2O from Ag8 and AgN coated glass slides as a function of time.

TEAM FUNDERS Centre of Applied Science for Health- ITT Dublin FOCAS Institute - DIT EI-Commercialisation Fund Figure 2: SEM images of S. epidermidis CSF41498 on blank coated glass slide and Ag8 coated glass slides.

References: Non-cytotoxic antibacterial silver-coumarin complex doped sol-gel coatings Swarna Jaiswal, Kunal Bhattacharya, Maeve Sullivan, Maureen Walsh, Bernadette S.Creaven, Fathima Laffir, Brendan Duffy, Patrick McHaleColliods and Surfaces-Biosurfaces, 2013, 102, 412-419


FP7 AeroMuco SUMMARY CREST (DIT) is participating in a EADS (Ger) led project funded through the Seventh Framework Programme developing advanced coatings for aircraft. The objective is drag reduction on the aircraft using laminar air flow concepts with multifunctional coatings. The coatings will function to provide anti-icing and anticontamination properties. The anti-icing research will deliver a set of resilient coatings that capable of reducing ice formation. There is also the potential to reduce the use of environmentally harmful de-icing fluids. The anti-contamination work will develop surface coatings that minimise or eliminate adhesion of biological matter from airborne insects.

IMPACT POTENTIAL

RESEARCH STRATEGY There are different routes that will be exploited to achieve the project’s objective. These routes include

The major impact of AEROMUCO will be on the conservation of fuel by making air transport more economic by supporting laminar flow measures. The use of efficient anti-ice coatings will lead to the potential employment of light weight devices (electric) for active de-icing and thusly to reduced energy

• Sol-gel materials providing multi-functionality

consumption. The present de-icing system using bleed air consume abound

• Freezing point suppressants that prevent ice formation

5 % of the engine power when turned on. By means of new innovative

• Multilayered hard coatings increasing particulate impact resistance • Low surface energy coatings increasing hydrophobicity • Coatings with immobilised enzymes breaking down biological matter

coatings, considerable savings of fuel can be realized and therefore contribute to the desired reduction in CO2 Enabling and improving as well as maintaining laminar flow conditions during flight by avoiding contamination and ice-formation will decrease CO2 emissions in aviation by an estimated 7 – 10 %. This correlates to 50 to 70

RESULTS TO DATE

billion tons of CO2 reduction based on the annual CO2 emission of 680 billion tons caused by aircraft.

Improved performance of anodised aluminium for leading edges

TEAM

Novel low surface energy coatings

Novel enzyme nano-reservoirs

synthesised

prepared

Insect adhesion investigated

Surface cleaning evaluated

Dr Brendan Duffy: bduffy@dit.ie 087 7805142


CSER KEY ACHIEVEMENTS 2013 Dr. Brian O’Neill and his colleague Dr. Thuy Dinh were awarded a prestigious contract by the European Commission to lead an independent assessment of the ICT Coalition for a Safer Internet for Children and Young People. 2012 Dr. Kevin Lalor and a team of researchers drawn from across the Institute were awarded funding by the President of Ireland to write the report on the Being Young and Irish Initiative (see picture). Dr. Máire Mhic Mhathúna and her team were awarded Irish Research Council funding to examine ‘Concepts of School Readiness ‘in light of the new free preschool year. The project involves collaboration with Mary Immaculate College, Limerick.

RESEARCH INTERESTS The Centre for Social and Educational Research (CSER) is a dynamic and innovative research centre which seeks to improve the quality of life of children, family and society. The CSER aims to impact on social and educational policies and practices through the provision of research under 5 research themes;

2011 Barnardos Ireland awarded funding for 3 years to an early childhood care and education research project involving collaboration between the CSER, DIT and the Geary Institute, University College Dublin, which is being lead by Professor Nóirín Hayes.

RECENT PUBLICATIONS

Juvenile Crime and Youth Justice Digital Childhoods

Hayes, N., Siraj-Blatchford, I., Keegan, S. & Goulding, E. (2013). Evaluation of the Early Years Programme of the Childhood Development Initiative. Dublin: Childhood Development Initiative (CDI).

Early Childhood Care and Education Higher Education Policy Social Care.

Hayes, N., Keegan, S. & Goulding, E. (2013). Evaluation of the Speech and Language Therapy Service of Tallaght West Childhood Development Initiative. Dublin: Childhood Development Initiative (CDI).

TEAM

O'Neill, B., Dinh, T. (2013). Cyber Bullying among 9- 16 year olds in Ireland Digital Childhoods Working Paper Series (No.4)

Dr. Kevin Lalor, Director Theme Leader: Social Care Prof. Nóirín Hayes, Associate Director and Co-founder Theme Leader: Early Childhood Care and Education Prof. Ellen Hazelkorn Theme Leader: Higher Education Policy

Lalor, K. , Bowden, M., Griffin, K., McElvaney, R., Quinn, B. & Kelleher, C., (2012). Take Charge of Change: Being Young and Irish Full Report. Dublin: Áras an Uachtaráin. Kelleher, C., Christie, R., Lalor, K., Fox, J., Bowden, M. and O’Donnell, C. (2011), An Overview of New Psychoactive Substances and the Outlets Supplying Them. Commissioner: National Advisory Committee on Drugs.

CONTACT DETAILS

Dr. Brian O'Neill Theme Leader: Digital Childhoods Dr. Thuy Dinh, Postdoctoral Research Fellow Theme: Digital Childhoods Siobhán Keegan, Research Fellow Theme : Early Childhood Care and Education Martina Ozonyia, Research Assistant Theme: Early Childhood Care and Education

Centre for Social and Educational Research (CSER) Dublin Institute of Technology 40-45 Mountjoy Square Dublin 1 Ireland Phone: +353 1 4024176 Email: cser@dit.ie Website: www.cser.ie

The centre has a team of associate researchers from the Department of Social Sciences and collaborates with partners from academic institutions and industry.

Contact: cser@dit.ie / www.cser.ie


CDI Early Years Programme Evaluation SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

In 2008, a research team lead by the Centre for Social and Educational Research won a €400,000 research contract to evaluate an Early Childhood Education and Care Programme that was implemented by Tallaght West Childhood Development Initiative.

Reports

The team consisted of Professor Nóirín Hayes, DIT and Professor Iram SirajBlatchford from the Institute of Education, University of London, both of whom were Principle Investigators on the project. The lead researcher was Siobhán Keegan, also from the Centre for Social and Educational Research, Dublin Institute of Technology.. The research was designed as a cluster randomised trial, an experimental method by which social units or clusters (in this case, Early Years services) were randomly allocated to intervention or control groups. The research question sought to determine if the programme resulted in better outcomes in terms of child social, language and cognitive development; home learning environment , parental stress and early childhood education and care environment quality. 330 children and their families took part in the research from 2008 to 2011.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE The Early Years programme had a positive and significant effect on the overall curricular and planning quality implemented by preschool practitioners.

Hayes, N., Siraj-Blatchford, I., Keegan, S. & Goulding, E. (2013). Evaluation of the Early Years Programme of the Childhood Development Initiative. Dublin: Childhood Development Initiative (CDI). Hayes, N., Keegan, S. & Goulding, E. (2013). Evaluation of the Speech and Language Therapy Service of Tallaght West Childhood Development Initiative. Dublin: Childhood Development Initiative (CDI). Conference Presentations/Papers Forthcoming and Past Keegan, S., Hayes, N. & Siraj-Blatchford, I. (2013).Identifying clusters of child and family factors that relate to home learning environment in an Irish sample Early Childhood Ireland’s “The Gathering” conference in Dublin in October , 2013 Keegan, S., Hayes, N. & Siraj-Blatchford, I. (2012) The parent component of an Early childhood education and care programme: child and family outcomes. 22nd European Early Childhood Education Research Association (EECERA) Conference in Porto, Portugal Keegan, S., Hayes, N., & Siraj-Blatchford, I. (2012) Preschool Quality in an evaluation of an early childhood are and education programme for disadvantaged children in Ireland. EARLI SIG 5 Conference in Learning and Development Early Childhood Utrecht, the Netherlands.

in

This meant that practice that was targeted at promoting children’s learning and development significantly improved as a result of the programme. The programme had a positive effect on home learning environment-the more often a parent went to the parent training sessions offered by the programme, the better the home learning environment. At least 18% of children who received speech and language therapy as part of the programme resolved their difficulties in time for their transition to school . Integration of speech and language therapy delivery into an early years programme was well-received by parents, practitioners and therapists alike and was found to be non-stigmatizing for children as well as being child-centred.

TEAM FUNDERS The research was joint-funded by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs and Atlantic Philanthropies to the value of €400,000 from 2008-2011. The possibility for extended funding and follow-up research is currently being explored by the centre.

CSER, DIT, 40-44 Mountjoy Square. www.cser.ie


Higher Education Policy Research Unit KEY PROJECTS • The Impact and Influence of League Tables and Ranking Systems on Higher Education Decision-making and Government Policy-making - in association with OECD and IAU • Rankings in Institutional Strategies and Processes (RISP) – in association with the EUA • Building World-Class Systems of Higher Education: Harnessing Systemness & Delivering Performance – in association with SUNY (State University of New York)

OVERVIEW The Higher Education Policy Research Unit (HEPRU) is the only interdisciplinary research group in Ireland studying issues of strategic and policy concern to the future of higher education in Ireland, and internationally. HEPRU has a strong international reputation for comparative policy research and analysis, research and science policy, and higher education assessment and evaluation. HEPRU is/has been a member of international or government review teams for the Netherlands, Australia, Spain, Poland, Germany, Finland and Romania, and acts as a consultant to the OECD. In addition, HEPRU works with national governments and higher education institutions (HEIs) in Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Flanders, Finland, Jamaica, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Romania, Serbia, Saudi Arabia, and Sweden, and private foundations. HEPRU also works with international and higher education organizations: International Association of Universities (IAU), UNESCO, European Commission, European University Association (EUA), European Centre for Strategic Management of Universities (ESMU), and Higher Education Authority of Ireland (HEA).

TEAM Professor Ellen Hazelkorn, Head, Higher Education Policy Research Unit Email: Ellen.hazelkorn@dit.ie Professor John Taylor, University of Liverpool, UK http://www.liv.ac.uk/management/staff/john-taylor/ Dr Pamela Eddy,College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia. United States peddy@wm.edu Dr Sonia Pavlenko, Babeș-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania sonia.pavlenko@gmail.com Amanda Moynihan, Doctoral Candidate Siobhan Harkin, Doctoral Candidate

• Impact of the Global Economic Crisis on Higher Education – in association with IAU • Building Capacity for Structural Reform in Higher Education of Western Balkan Countries – in association with University Novi Sad, Serbia • Measuring the societal impacts of universities' research into arts and the humanities (HERAVALUE) – in association with University of Twente (Netherlands) and NIFU-STEP (Norway). • The Civic University: The leadership and management challenges - in association with Newcastle University

SELECT PUBLICATIONS • E. Hazelkorn – Worldwise, Chronicle of Higher Education, http://chronicle.com/blogs/worldwise/author/ehazelkorn • E. Hazelkorn (2013) “What we know and don’t know about quality”, Higher Education Authority, Ireland. • E. Hazelkorn (2011) Rankings and the Reshaping of Higher Education: The Battle for World Class Excellence, Palgrave Macmillan, UK. • Co-author (2010, 2013), Higher Education in Regional and City Development Reviews of Australia, Catalonia, Poland. OECD, Paris. • E. Hazelkorn (2013) “Making an Impact: New directions for Arts and Humanities Research, Journal of the Association of Arts and Humanities Education. • E. Hazelkorn (lead author) (2009) Assessing Europe’s University-based Research, EU Expert Group on Assessment of University Based Research, DG Research, Brussels. • E. Hazelkorn (2005) Developing Research in New Institutions. OECD, Paris.

CONTACT DETAILS Professor Ellen Hazelkorn Head, Higher Education Policy Research Unit (HEPRU) Dublin Institute of Technology Ellen.hazelkorn@dit.ie http://www.dit.ie/hepru Prof Hazelkorn is a member of the Higher Education Authority (Ireland), and incoming-President of EAIR (the European Higher Education Society). She is a member of editorial boards for Higher Education Policy and International Journal for Researcher Development and the International Research Committee for the American Education Research Association.

www.dit.ie/hepru


Performance Measurement in the Public Sector SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

The measurement of performance in the public sector has become a critical issue for governments worldwide. The demand for public services has increased while at the same time, taxpayers are unhappy with higher taxes. Therefore, it is important that the public sector is able to demonstrate value for money.

These are as follows:

The use of quantitative performance information is one way of being able to demonstrate that the public’s taxes are being used well in providing efficient and effective public services. The public sector in the UK has a wide range of experience in using performance information. However, the Irish public sector has been slower to use performance information. Despite high level support, Irish public sector organisations have been reluctant to develop publicly available performance information. This is due to the concern about how this information may be used by people outside the organisation. Furthermore, there was a lack of a drive from the centre to push organisations into developing performance information. The experience of the UK would suggest that there needs to be a push from central government to ensure that organisations develop performance targets and outline their actual achievements against these targets

What is the value of an effective performance management system? What are the benefits and drawbacks of systems?

using performance management

What are the key requirements for an effective performance management systems? What are the dangers of using quantitative performance measures? What are the key differences between the UK and Ireland in relation to the use of performance information? What can be done in Ireland to ensure that Irish public sector organisations are not only efficient and effective but are seen to be as such?

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Identification of key differences between the UK and Ireland Critical evaluation of reasons as to why performance management systems did not fully develop in Ireland

TEAM FUNDERS The PhD was partially funded by ITB .


Digital Youth RESEARCH THEMES

OUR FINDINGS • Online activities for 9-16 year olds in Ireland are substantially below European norms leaving many opportunities unexplored.

This research theme studies the role of information and communication technologies in contemporary youth. It examines the diverse array of opportunities for new modes of learning and socialization as well as risks posed for children and young people in Ireland today. It employs multiple methods to map Irish children's and parents' changing experience of the internet. It also sustains an active dialogue with national and European policy stakeholders. Our research methods include: base-line studies, qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research, collaborative international studies and international comparative reviews, and consultations with national and international stakeholders.

• 57% of young people don‟t go beyond the second step of a „ladder of opportunities‟. • Cluster analysis shows that „a low use, low risk‟ pattern to be the most prominent followed by a “moderate-use, entertainment and communication-oriented” use of the internet. • Young people‟s digital skills are closer to the European average though less than half express confidence in their own skills. • Younger children, in particular, are lacking in many basic safety skills. • Publications, reports, data available at: http://www.dit.ie/digitalyouth/links/

Digital Opportunities for Young People in Ireland (9-16 years)

KEY OUTPUTS • Identifying new, relevant, robust and comparable findings regarding the use of internet and divides in usage, skills and participation, among children aged 9-16 in Ireland • Evaluating children‟s own coping responses to risk, including their media literacy • Examining the motivations behind and effectiveness of parental mediation, teachers‟ and youth workers‟ mediation and awareness strategies • Contributing to an action plan on digital literacy, inclusion, opportunities and digital safety • Engaging industry both in the public and private sector in supporting educational and civil society initiatives • Ensuring digital policy reflects best interests of children and young people and that national children‟s strategy adequately reflects the importance of digital technologies and communication in their lives

TEAM MEMBERS Dr Brian O'Neill is Head of School of Media at Dublin Institute of Technology and former Government of Ireland, Senior Research Fellow. He is the national coordinator of the EU Kids Online project in Ireland and a member of its management group [Email: brian.oneill@dit.ie] Dr Thuy Dinh is a post-doctoral research fellow on the Digital Childhoods research project. [Email: thuy.dinh@dit.ie] Emeritus Professor Nóirín Hayes is a leader in ECEC research and continues to conduct and disseminate research pertaining to all aspects of ECEC policy, practice and research. [Email: noirin.hayes@dit.ie] The team acts as the national node for EU Kids Online, a 33 country network supported by the EC‟s Safer Internet Programme

OUR PROJECTS • EU Kids Online: Risks and Safety on the Internet (EC Safer Internet Programme) • Net Children Going Mobile (EC Safer Internet Programme) • Digital Childhoods (Irish Research Council • ICT Coalition for the Safer Use of Connected Devices and Online Services (ICT Coalition)

Email: brian.oneill@dit.ie


Psychometric Measures SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

Increasing college participation rates, and a more diverse student population, is posing a challenge for colleges in facilitating all learners achieve their potential. This poster reports on a study to investigate the usefulness of data mining techniques in the analysis of factors deemed to be significant to academic performance in first year of college. Measures used include data typically available to colleges at the start of first year such as age, gender and prior academic performance. The study also explores the usefulness of additional psychometric measures that can be assessed early in semester one, specifically, measures of personality, motivation, learning style and selfregulation. Data was gathered over three years, and focused on a diverse student population of first year students from a range of academic disciplines (nâ&#x2030;&#x2C6;1100). Initial models generated on two years of data (n=713) demonstrate high accuracy.

An online questionnaire was developed to profile students on a range of psychometric measures relevant to academic performance (www.howilearn.ie). The tool gives immediate feedback to students, and has been used during first year induction at ITB since September 2010. Initial data analysis shows models of academic performance can achieve good predictive accuracy, particularly if younger students (under 21) and mature students (over 21) are modeled separately. The most accurate models were Support Vector Machines (Anova kernel, epsilon=0.7 and C=1) with an accuracy of 82% on models for under 21s (n=350), and an accuracy of 93% on models for over 21s (n=286). Binary class label: poor academic achievers who failed overall (GPA<2.0, n=296), and strong academic achievers who achieved honours overall (GPA>2.5, n=340).

EXPECTED CONTRIBUTION 1. Extends existing research in Education Data Mining beyond analysis of incourse measures generated primarily from Virtual Learning Environments (VLE) and Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITS). 2. Extends research on relevant factors for academic performance in tertiary education beyond the university sector, focusing on both non-standard students, and tertiary students with a weaker academic. 3. The novel inclusion of data on specific learning difficulties.

Figure 2. Comparison of models to predict academic performance Figure 1. Student profiling, www.howilearn.ie Model performance across learners is comparable when modeling all students in a single model, average accuracy = 73.8%. When students are split by age, models that can learn more complex patterns perform better. The difference in accuracy across models is most pronounced for mature students, suggesting that patterns in that subgroup are the more complex. Models trained on prior academic performance only were marginally lower in accuracy than models trained on psychometric data as well, indicating that measures of prior academic performance are also accounting for measures of personality, motivation and learning strategies. The exception to this was over 21s where prior academic performance is not always available.

ACKNOWLEGEMENTS The authors would like to thank the Institute of Technology Blanchardstown (www.itb.ie) for their support in facilitating this research, and the staff at the National Learning Network Assessment Services (www.nln.ie) for their assistance in administering questionnaires during student induction.

Contact: Geraldine Gray geraldine.gray@itb.ie


Realistic Driving Simulation SUMMARY Research group between IT Blanchardstown and NUI Maynooth Aim of research is to produce a hi-fidelity driving simulator using videos Manipulation of images to generate different scenarios Applications of driving simulators are many, from driver training to medical and psychological testing All driving simulators that exist currently, from the most basic to the most advanced, are based upon virtual environments, such as are present in the area of video game consoles Despite massive advancements in the realism of these virtual environments, none are truly photorealistic Data acquired using a low-profile Mobile Mapping System that acquires stereo image data alongside navigation data at a rate of 10 Hz Video integrated with a driving simulator â&#x20AC;&#x201C; the time between displaying sequential video frames is linked directly to the pressure applied to the simulatorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s accelerator pedal

SCENARIO FORMATIONS Three scenarios were formed, each consisting of different areas of redacted and augmented road segments.

unaltered,

Three stretches of road of similar geometry were chosen as sites for manipulation (unaltered, redacted and augmented) Each of the three locations was either (1) left unaltered, (2) augmented or (3) redacted, this was done to counter any bias in the road geometry that might serve to change the drivers behaviour, rather than the experimental manipulation itself. All 30 participants, when driving, encountered each of these scenarios once only

PRELIMINARY RESULTS No difference observed in the preliminary results between the redacted and augmented sequences However, driver speed changes that related to the geometry and features of the road were observed

AUGMENTED/REDACTED ROADS Unaltered image, with no augmented or redacted road features

Augmented image with 60 km/h speed limit signs inserted

Redacted image with road lines erased

TEAM FUNDERS Funded by the Irish Research Council

Michael Brogan [michael.brogan@live.ie] :: Catherine Deegan [catherine.deegan@itb.ie]


Dublin Energy Lab (DEL) KEY ACHIEVEMENTS Over 30 Academic Researchers About 30 Postgraduate Researchers and Postdocs 100 journal and 200 conference papers in last 6 years €6m research funding from European, national funding bodies Patents, licenses and spin outs Strong industry links with SMEs, utilities and corporates Core member of the national Graduate Research Education Programme in engineering and energy Access to very wide range of indoor and outdoor laboratory facilities in the areas of: electrical machines and power; materials testing; renewable technology labs; field energy monitoring; solar field trials; thermodynamics and fluids. Links with almost all Irish third-level energy researcher groups Strong relationships with other international research organisations

RESEARCH INTERESTS

RECENT PUBLICATIONS

The Dublin Energy Lab (DEL) is an interdisciplinary research centre working in the fields of energy, renewable energy and energy efficiency. The centre has approximately 30 staff and 50 postgraduates undertaking basic and applied research in energy, renewable energy, energy efficiency. It specialises in:

Blackledge, J., Babajanov, B.:Three Dimensional Simulation of the Radiation Field Patterns Generated by an Integrated Antenna. International Journal of Applied Mathematics, forthcoming, 2013.

• energy device development • energy systems modelling and optimisation • policy research The DEL operates in the following main fields: • renewable energy supply (including solar) • smart networks • energy storage

McLoughlin, F., Duffy, A., Conlon, M. (2013) Evaluation of time series techniques to characterise domestic electricity demand, Energy, Volume 50, 1 February 2013, Pages 120-130 McLoughlin, F., Duffy, A., Conlon, M. (2012) Characterising domestic electricity consumption patterns by dwelling and occupant socio-economic variables: An Irish case study. Energy and Buildings. Huang, M., Eames, P., Norton, B., Hewitt, N. (2011) Natural Convection in an Internally Finned Phase Change Material Heat Sink for the Thermal Management of Photovoltaics. Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, Vol 95, Issue 7, pp1598-1603

• smart cities We offer research, consulting and demonstration support. For further information see dublinenergylab.dit.ie

TEAM

Duffy, A. and Crawford, R. (2013) The effects of physical activity on greenhouse gas emissions for common transport modes in European countries, Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, Volume 19, March 2013, Pages 13-19

Ayompe, L., Duffy, A., McCormack, S., Conlon, M. (2010) Projected costs of a gridconnected domestic PV system under different scenarios in Ireland, using measured data from a trial installation. Energy Policy, 38, pp. 3731-3743. Doherty, W., Reynolds, A., Kennedy, D. (2010) Computer Simulation of a Biomass Gasification-Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Power System Using Aspen Plus. Energy,Vol.35, pp.4545-4555. Yueping Fang, Trevor Hyde, Neil Hewitt, Philip C. Eames, Brian Norton (2010) Thermal performance analysis of an electrochromic vacuum glazing with low emittance coatings Solar Energy, 84, 516-525

CONTACT DETAILS Dr. Aidan Duffy, Centre Manager, Dublin Energy Lab, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, IRELAND. t: + 353 1 402 3940 e: aidan.duffy@dit.ie

Contact Details: aidan.duffy@dit.ie


Solar Energy Using Switchable Reflectors KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL

SUMMARY / ABSTRACT Presently, effective concentration of sunlight at medium-high concentration ratios requires tracking of the diurnal and seasonal solar path changes. Such mechanical tracking systems can be quite complex and add significant cost of material, installation, use, maintenance and repair. A novel system incorporating “switchable reflectors” has the potential to track the sun with no mechanical moving parts and provide economic advantages. Prismatic, electrochromic (EC), gasochromic, polymer dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC or LC) and electrophoretic or suspended particle device (SPD) technologies provide switching capabilities to modulate the transmittance of the solar spectrum. Such technologies are already being used in buildings to regulate sun light transmission and consequently control the solar heat flow through windows, reducing heating and cooling requirements and the costs involved [1]. Emerging developments apply the switching capability to reflectors. The switching reflectors can be used as a transmissive or reflective window or possibly at an intermediary state. An additional advantage offered by LC, SPD and electrochromic devices is their electrical control. The combination of traditional and switchable reflectors into the design of solar concentrators could allow the collection of solar energy at different angular ranges, as well as improve the proportion of diffuse light component to be collected [2, 3].

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Switchable reflectors are an innovative technology that can change from being transparent (fully or partially) to reflective to solar radiation. Four main types of switchable mirrors are available: prismatic, gasochromic, electrochromic and liquid crystal (LC). Nowadays only the LC type appears to be commercially available from Kent Optronics Inc.

SR in reflective state [7]. SR semi-reflective or semi-transparent state.

SR in transparent state.

Afternoon Sun Evening Sun

PV or PV/T module South

S R

PV or PV/T module

NonSR North

Possible configuration to track the sun path seasonal change with switchable mirrors.

West

Potential Disadvantages: Optical losses greater than a tracking system as insolation passes through an additional transparent element. Cost of switchable mirrors may not reduce overall cost of energy produced taking optical losses into account. Long-term optical performance of switchable mirrors is unproven. Presently, absorption, transmission and switching speed measurements have been carried out suspended particle devices (SPD) and liquid crystal switchable windows of 15x15cm from SmartGlass International. Ltd. Switching Off for SPD occurs in order of 500ms to 2s according to the wavelength. Switching On occurs between 200ms and 400ms. Comparatively the On switching time for LC window is in the order of 15ms and between 25ms and 55ms for the Off switching time. Note switching times lengthen with the window size. Similar switching speed for LC switchable mirrors are expected. This would make a solar concentrator using switchable mirrors practical to adapt to changing solar conditions, maintaining the desired solar concentration and collecting a greater amount of the diffused component compared to traditional solar concentrators.

Above is the expected comparative representation of solar energy collected during the day for a fixed solar concentrator (eg fixed CPC), a fixed solar concentrator using switchable reflectors (eg. fixed CPC with switchable mirrors) and a motorized sun-tracking solar concentrator (eg .1-axis CPC). Simulation is being carried out using the optical properties of the parts composing solar concentrators, the choice of concentrator design, the absorber properties and the solar input conditions.

REFERENCES Morning Sun

S R

Winter Sun path

Greater amount of solar energy collected. Cost lowered by reduced area of expensive solar energy absorber. No moving parts; obviating need for, and cost of, motors, controls and associated input power. Minimal maintenance requirement.

Pixels part in reflection state and transparent state.

At times when a solar ray in a specified angular range are incident on a switchable reflector, the ray is directly reflected onto the solar absorber which could be Photovoltaic (PV), Thermal (T) or an hybrid PV/T. At other times of the day, the switchable reflector is set to be fully or partially transparent, allowing the incident beam to reach the second reflector and consequently reflected onto the absorber. Mid-Day Sun Summer Sun path

Potential Advantages:

NonSR East

Sectional view of a possible configuration to track the sun path at times of the day.

1.Lampert, C. M. (1995), Chromogenic Switchable Glazing: Towards the Development of the Smart Window. Window Innovations ’95, Toronto, Canada, June 5-6, 1995,The Proceedings. 2.Norton, B. (2009), Concentrating Solar Energy without Moving Parts. CISBAT 2009, Lausanne, Switzerland, September 2009 3.Norton, B. and McCormack, S., Dublin Institute of Technology (2009). Switchable Mirrors for Solar Concentration.

TEAM / FUNDERS My PhD, started in January 2012, is supervised by Professor Brian Norton and Dr. John Doran. The project is funded by IRCSET-Graduate Research Education Programme in Engineering (GREP-Eng) and based at DIT Dublin Energy Lab.

Construction drawing of an inward facing CPC of acceptance angle .

Possible IF-CPC in a W-E orientation for diurnal tracking using switchable mirrors. The equivalent acceptance angle is 2

Philippe.lemarchand@mydit.ie


Energy Wizard PROBLEM / MARKET NEED 1. Recent European legislation on energy efficiency and end use has shifted some of the responsibility for the efficient use of energy in the home from the consumer to the energy supply company. •

There is an onus on energy supply companies to reduce customer demand through energy services and advice.

Energy supply companies do not know the amount and type of energy used by customers, thus presenting a barrier to energy advice.

To promote consumer investment, they must provide confident rational advice on a dwelling specific basis.

PREFERRED ROUTE TO COMMERCIALISATION DIT is currently working with Electric Ireland who will be using this product to support their customer base. Further commercial potential exists for licencing to utilities and other energy providers. Such options will be considered as the project progresses.

2. There is no accurate, impartial information for consumers regarding the financial performance of retrofit energy efficiency measures specific to their dwelling. In the Irish energy market, the economic performance of such interventions is typically given by the company supplying the product and average figures are quoted to all potential customers. •

Customers are interested in the balance between the financial savings achievable through retrofit of their dwelling and the capital cost of the remedial measure. In order to promote investment in the sector, the potential financial savings must be linked to the consumers demand on a case by case basis.

3. There are technologies available to model the thermal performance of dwellings using computational fluid dynamics techniques that could be used to model the performance of such technologies •

But; they are time consuming, expensive, require expertise with the product, are data intensive and require detailed survey of the dwelling in question. A simpler solution is required.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION The technique that is used to estimate energy demand in the dwelling for Building Energy Ratings (BERs) is called an asset rating technique. It is a heat balance approach that makes standardised assumptions regarding heating season and required internal temperature. Our approach was to simplify the data requirements of the asset rating approach and calibrate it using the consumers actual annual demand. The programme is used on a dwelling by dwelling basis and multiple simulations are carried out simultaneously to represent each of the energy efficiency remedial measures considered.

Retrofit Measures

Attic Insulation

Cavity Wall insulation

IP POSITION External Wall Insulation

High efficiency Boilers

Energy Efficient Lighting

Internal Dry Lining

IP developed as part of the project is owned by DIT and ESB Electric Ireland.

Window upgrade

Lagging Jacket

Email: dairereilly@gmail.com


Wind Power and Energy Storage SUMMARY

KEY OUTPUTS

The combined, all-island of Ireland (AII) system, which includes the Republic of Ireland (ROI) and Northern Ireland (NI), has set ambitious policy targets to generate 40% of electricity from renewable sources, mainly wind power, by 2020. As wind power is stochastic in nature, additional system balancing is required to ensure system reliability and stability. Previous studies have demonstrated that energy storage is proven in terms of system balancing and enhanced renewable energy integration. Pre-2020 AII policy has resulted in plans for grid reinforcement, interconnection, additional gas generators and smart grid initiatives. A number of policy commissioned studies have considered the use of large scale energy storage such as pumped hydroelectric energy storage (PHES) and compressed energy storage (CAES) but the economic and operational benefits they provide to the AII system have not been fully examined. Current CAES plants have shown economic feasibility and reliability but further analysis is required. Moreover, CAES may add value to the AII system due to its ability to displace less flexible and more expensive generators. However, questions remain about the economic feasibility of CAES in terms of investment cost, as well as its effects on the AII system in terms of providing ancillary services. Thus, the main focus of this analysis is to investigate CAES as an additional generator in the 2020 Irish power system using power systems simulation software PLEXOS.

The figure below indicates the half hourly compression and generation cycles of the CAES plant over a typical week. During times of high SMP the CAES plant tends to generate and the opposite generally occurs for low SMP. This suggests that the CAES plant is taking advantage of energy arbitrage opportunities within the SEM as a result of the PLEXOS optimisation.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE PLEXOS version 6.207 R05 was used to build and run the models developed for this analysis. PLEXOS is a power systems modelling tool developed by Energy Exemplar and is used for electricity market modelling and planning worldwide. Since 2007, PLEXOS has been used in Ireland by the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) and market participants to validate and forecast single electricity market (SEM) outcomes. The CER publishes a validated PLEXOS model annually consisting of the technical details for all the generators such as maximum and minimum generation levels, ramp rates and heat rates. The CER validated forecast model of 2011-2012 was used as a starting point from which the 2020 model for this analysis was developed. The 2020 model was populated with the individual generator technical characteristics and the ranges of reserve provision were assigned as per the transmission constraint groups requirements. The system demand and installed wind power capacities for 2020 were obtained from the Eirgrid All-Island generation capacity statement 2012-2021. The Great Britain market and interconnections to the ROI and NI were modelled as per the 2011 CER model. Concurrently the PLEXOS software simulates and optimises the half hourly dispatch of the generation portfolio to meet demand at least cost while taking into account the generators technical and commercial characteristics. Prior to dispatch, PLEXOS calculates the availability of each generator throughout the year while taking into account the planned and unplanned maintenance. The former is assigned manually based on the 2011 schedule and the latter is modelled as a random event. Similar to the SEM, PLEXOS calculates a system marginal price (SMP) and a generator output schedule for each period, therefore providing an accurate representation of the dispatch of generators on the AII power system. To evaluate the benefits of the CAES in 2020 two scenarios are run; one without CAES and a second with CAES as an additional generator in the AII system. A CAES plant is represented in PLEXOS by an idealised pumped storage (PS) plant and an idealised GT connected by some constraints in order to replicate the operation of the CAES plant. In compression mode the PS plant takes power from the grid to compress air and in generation mode, both the PS plant and GT generate power.

It was also determined that a 270MW CAES plant can displace a significant fraction of coal and natural gas generators. The CAES plant has a minor effect on wind generation and this presumable due to the large system non-synchronous penetration limit in 2020. However, it would be interesting to examine the effect on the AII system if wind was modelled stochastically relative to perfect foresight. The addition of a 270MW CAES plant in the AII system enables a 9.05% reduction of CO2 emissions. Also, due to the addition of CAES, the pool revenues for most of the generators increased. Although, this is beneficial to most of the power producers it has a negative effect on the retail market. Furthermore, CAES can achieve a high positive net revenue under current SEM rules while exploiting energy arbitrage opportunities. However, it remains for continuing research to study the additional revenue to be gained from the ancillary services market and annual capacity payments. As regards the cost of wind energy in Ireland, we have conducted an extensive search of media reports. As a result we have obtained 27 capital costs for wind projects in Ireland with average capital costs of â&#x201A;Ź1,600/kW for on average 19MW wind projects for a 2011 base year .

TEAM FUNDERS The author would like to express his appreciation to Dublin Institute of Technology for funding this research through the Fiosraigh Dean of Graduate Research School Award 2011. Moreover, the author would like to express his gratitude to Energy Exemplar for providing an academic licence for PLEXOS. Funding has also been provided by SEAI under the Renewable Energy Research, Development and Demonstration Programme for participation in the International Energy Agency Task 26 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Cost of Wind Energy

e: brendan.cleary1@mydit.ie t: (01) 4027936


Electric Power Research Centre (EPRC) KEY ACHIEVEMENTS Achieved Funding from, i) Enterprise Ireland Commercialization fund transferred to Industry

for UPQC and technology

ii) CaBS Award from Research Support Unit of DIT for Smart Grid Technology iii) Strand 1 for Power Quality in DG integrated Network with UPQC iv) HEA Equipment Grant for Real Time Simulation Laboratory Set up v) Enterprise Ireland Innovation Partnership on Multi terminal HVDC Systems vi) DIT Fiosraigh research grant for Smart Microgrid vii)EU-FP7 collaboration grant on PVCrops International Research Collaboration: i)

Institute of Energy Technology (IET) at Aalborg University

EPRC@DIT

ii)

Purdue University

Towards a Clean, Secured and Sustainable Electricity Network

iii)

University of Ulster

iv) UPC, Spain

RESEARCH INTERESTS  Smart Grid and Microgrid Networks  Autonomous Operation  Efficient and Economic Performance Community Based Microgrid  Integration of Renewable Energy with FACTS devices  Wind Energy  Solar Photovoltaic Energy  Grid-tie Inverter Topology  Voltage Source Inverter  Z-Source Inverter  Anti-islanding Technique  Power Quality Monitoring, Analysis and Improvement  eCAR Charging Analysis  Design and Development of FACTS devices  Active Power Filter  Dynamic Voltage Restorer  Unified Power Quality Conditioner  Assessment of Urban Wind Energy Resource Behaviour of urban wind environment Interaction of microwind generation and distribution network  Electric networks for Wave Energy Systems  Impact of CHP on Urban Networks  Vibration Analysis of Generator Stators

TEAM Faculty Members Dr Michael F Conlon

Research Scholars Fergus Sharkey

PhD & PostDoc Researchers: Completed - 6, Continuing – 3 Academic Researchers: 10 Published Papers in Journal and Conferences: more than 40 within last 5 years

RECENT PUBLICATIONS S K Khadem, M Basu and M F Conlon, "Harmonic Power Compensation Capacity of Shunt APF and its Relationship to Design Parameters", IET Power Electronics, 2013 in press L. Mariam, M. Basu and M.F. Conlon, "A Review of Existing Microgrid Architectures", Journal of Engineering, 2013 B. Basu, A. Staino, and M. Basu, “Role of facts devices in mitigating grid fault induced vibration of wind turbines,” Wind Energy, 2013. M. Hanif, M. Basu and K. Gaughan, “Development of EN50438 compliant wavelet-based islanding detection technique for three-phase static distributed generation systems”, IET- Ren. Power Gen, vol. 6, issue 4, 2012, pp. 289-301. S K Khadem, M Basu and M F Conlon, "UPQC for Power Quality Improvement in DG Integrated Smart Grid Network – A Review," International Journal of Emerging Electric Power Systems: Vol. 13: Iss. 1, Article 3, 2012 M. Hanif, M. Basu, and K. Gaughan, "Understanding the operation of a Z-source inverter for photovoltaic application with a design example,“ IET Power Electronics, vol. 4, pp. 278-287, 2011 I. Axente, M. Basu, and M. F. Conlon, "DC link voltage control of UPQC for better dynamic performance," Electric Power Systems Research, vol. 81, pp. 18151824, 2011 I. Axente, J. Ganesh, M. Basu, K. Gaughan, M. Conlon: Development of a 12 kVA DSP-Controlled Laboratory Prototype UPQC. IEEE Transactions Power Electronics, Vol. 25(6), pp. 1471- 1479. June, 2010.

Michael Farrell

Lubna Mariam

Dr Malabika Basu

Benish K Paelly

Kevin Gaughan

David Shally

CONTACT DETAILS Dr Michael Conlon

Joseph Keraney

France Darlus Mengapche

Keith Sunderland

Stefan Geidel

Director, Electric Power Research Centre Head,Department of Control Engineering Assistant Head,School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering DIT, Kevin Street, Dublin 8 Email: michael.conlon@dit.ie Ph: +353-1-4022838

Email: michael.conlon@dit.ie


Heat Consumption in Ireland SUMMARY/ABSTRACT In Ireland, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) make up a small percentage of gas consumers but account for a significant proportion of Irelands total gas consumption. However, relatively few green-house gas (GHG) emissions mitigation policies have been targeted at the SME sector. This can be partly attributed to lack of demand data or information on potential energy savings, in what is a heterogeneous market segment. This informational deficit will be addressed by this project using smart-metering and enterprise descriptive data from a range of SMEs, as shown in Figure 1, which has been made available by Bord Gáis Networks (BGN). The data from approximately 50 SMEs, originates from a non-daily metered (NDM) SME gas customer behaviour trial as part of a larger Smart Metering Project managed by the Commission for Energy Regulation.

Figure 1: Market segments in the SME gas customer behaviour trial.

The consequences of a poor understanding of energy use by SMEs include: • difficulties accurately forecasting short-term (next day) SME gas consumption resulting in under- or over-allocation of gas in the transmission networks and associated high balancing charges, thus increasing the costs to gas retailers and customers and reducing competitiveness; • hindering the accurate assessment of the financial performances of energy efficient (e.g. more efficient plant and equipment) and renewable energy supply interventions (e.g. micro-CHP, solar thermal devices) thus delaying the deployment of such interventions; • delaying the development of evidence-based energy policies for the sector (GHG mitigation, enhancing security of supply, competitive energy prices).

Public Sector

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL Industry

Education

SMEs Retail

Health

Food & Drink

Leisure

This project will analyse the gas consumption of each participant in the SME gas customer behaviour trial, in order to: • develop and validate a forecasting model which can predict energy demand from individual enterprises to allow more accurate purchasing of bulk gas supplies for the national network, thus resulting in savings and increasing competitiveness; • develop and validate a 'bottom-up' engineering model (that can be validated using statistical parameters) for individual gas supply points leading to an investigation into the cost-effectiveness of efficient and renewable technologies for the smart-metered sample;

The smart meter data collected at the SME gas supply points, provides time-ofuse hourly gas consumption data, e.g. see Figure 2. The analysis and interpretation of such unique time-series data together with the enterprise descriptive data will allow a better understanding of heat consumption in SMEs to be developed.

• extend these findings to all customers to identify the potential for GHG emissions mitigation so as to inform policymaking.

Figure 2: Illustrative daily time-of-use gas consumption profile.

PROJECT TEAM

12

Student:

Ronan Oliver (DIT – Dublin Energy Lab)

10

Supervisors:

Dr. Aidan Duffy (DIT – Dublin Energy Lab) Ian Kilgallon (Bord Gáis Networks)

6

Prof. Karsten Menzel (University College Cork)

4 2 0 0:00 1:00 2:00 3:00 4:00 5:00 6:00 7:00 8:00 9:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00 0:00

kW

8

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT DIT – Fiosraigh Enterprise Partnership with Bord Gáis Networks

Time of Day

Contact Details: ronan.oliver@dit.ie


Magnetics and Machines Research Group SUMMARY/ABSTRACT

KEY OUTPUTS/POTENTIAL

The ITB Magnetics and Machines Research Group (MMRG), begun in 2010, conducts research in electrical, electromagnetic and sustainable energy technology, particularly in the area of fabrication and control of marine and wind energy devices..

The Dry WEC linear test rig was built to be capable of both generating and motoring operation, and of re-creating ocean wave conditions in a scaled way. It consists of a rotating 5 kW brushless PM motor driving a 1 m ball screw, capable of speeds of up to 2.6 m/s and controlled by a dSPACE DS1103 data acquisition and control unit connected to a host PC

We recently completed LinGen, a €280k project to design a double-sided linear switched reluctance generator (LSRG) for use in wave energy harvesting, and to build and validate a bench-scale prototype.

Installation of the Dry WEC has significantly increased MMRG’s experimental capability.

To do this we built the Dry WEC, a 5kW linear test rig capable of acting as a prime mover for wave and tidal PTOs under scaled ocean wave conditions in the lab. LSRG Motor and ball screw x

Fe

Motor controller

x*

dSPACE DS1103

don, doff, IHI

Current controller

ia, ib, ic

Host PC

The LinGen Project

Construction of the linear test rig, capable of re-creating ocean wave conditions in a scaled laboratory environment, has proved to be an effective validating tool, and an invaluable test facility for the scaled linear PTO prototype.

The generator used a novel linear double-sided switched-reluctance technology. Cheap and robust, we showed that this can out-perform traditional permanent-magnet and hydraulic technologies in marine applications. Each stage of the design was supported by coupled dynamic simulation of the magnetic, mechanical, electrical and power electronic performance of the system, using Finite Element Analysis and a Matlab/Simulink/SimPowerSystems environment.

600 400

Translator

displacement (mm)

The generator and drive at the heart of LinGen were designed to form the nucleus of a novel power take-off (PTO) unit for a Wavebob wave energy converter.

200 0 -200 -400 -600

1. the use of SR technology in a direct-generation application involving reciprocating movement is a viable option for an ocean wave PTO 2. The electromagnetic force developed is finely controllable over short timescales.

Command Estimated

100

force (N)

Electromagnetic

Design and construction of the LSRG has shown that 50 0 -50

Further work was done to demonstrate the LSRG’s performance using a number of control regimes in a scaled ocean wave environment.

-100 -150

Phase flux linkage (V-s)

24

26

28

30

32

34

Time (seconds)

2.5

100 V 200 V 287 V

2

TEAM FUNDERS

1.5

1

0.5

0 0

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

Phase current (A)

Dr Garret Brady garret.brady@itb.ie

36

38

40

42


Warmer Wedge PROBLEM / MARKET NEED Warmer Wedge is a smart storage device for hot water systems. It allows the home owner to save money by utilising off-peak energy to heat their water, and still get the hot water they want, when they want it. In traditional homes the hot water tank is stored inside the „airing cupboard‟, which is normally located in the centre of the house to avoid freezing and heat loss. The size of the tank is often a compromise between space, heat loss, and the hot water demand of the home. The standard 100 litre cylinder tank was devised to allow the home owner keep tank space small, heat water on average twice per day, and provides space over the tank for clothes. In effect this common scenario means that home owners are paying the highest tariff for their energy, heating the tank between 7am-9am and again between 5pm-7pm. Warmer Wedge allows the home owner heat all their daily hot water in one go at the cheapest electric tariff and makes the tank behave like a 200 liter tank.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION

PREFERRED ROUTE TO COMMERCIALISATION Warmer Wedge is a Business to Business product. Four routes to market have been identified: DIY and Hardware distribution – DIY distributor with warehousing and distribution network currently supplying energy products to the multiple DIY stores, Independent hardware buying groups and hardware merchant chains Online Direct – WWW.WarmerWedge.ie direct online sales – Usage of online sales and packaging company to promote Warmer Wedge both in Ireland and Internationally. Utility Companies – Online sales and energy saver schemes and better energy credits. Tank Manufacturers – Integration with new tanks for compact energy storage.

Warmer Wedges are retrofitted to the household hot water tank, at the top of the cylinder. Their unique triangular design allows them to fit neatly around the top of the tank. As the waste heat is lost from the tank it is absorbed into the PCM inside the Warmer Wedge. Then as the water in the tank cools to below 60C, the wasted heat energy is expelled from the PCM and bounced back into the hot water tank, thus keeping the water hotter for longer and also at a more constant temperature throughout the day. Nightsaver Electricity Customers – Cheap electricity at night (approx. 8c/kWh 11pm – 7am), Normal priced electricity during the day (approx. 16c/kWh 7am11pm). These customers can save 25% on their hot water bills by heating all their hot water at night as the tank with Warmer Wedges can store all the day hot water needed during the day. For the average home with a daily hot water bill of €1 per day plus VAT (6.5kWh), the daily savings are 25c + VAT which equates to €110 per year . With an initial spend of €200 for 10 Warmer Wedges, the payback is just under 2 years. SMART Electricity Meter Customers – Electricity prices will vary depending on time of usage, cheapest at night and very expensive during evening peak periods (5pm – 7pm) similar to those available for Nightsaver customers at present. Again, with an initial spend of €200 for 10 Warmer Wedges, the payback is around 2 years.

Market Potential There are currently 120,000 Nightsaver dual tariff customers in the Republic of Ireland and 6.5 Million “Economy 7” equivalent schemes in the UK. This initial market will expand exponentially with the roll out of SMART metering across Europe as all homes will become variable tariff customers by 2020. The market will grow to 220 Million homes in Europe and 140 Million in the USA by 2025.

IP POSITION Warmer Wedge is a Patent Pending technology


LCA Studies SUMMARY

KEY/POTENTIAL OUTPUTS

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) studies are most often used as a basis for decision-making processes, including policy development. It is important that these studies measure the accuracy of their results, as it is key information necessary for the development of an effective solution. Accuracy can be measured through qualitative and quantitative uncertainty analysis; however, the methodology is not straight forward as it involves quantifying the uncertainty of choices, such as the use of unrepresentative data or decisions based on expert judgment. This has led to uncertainty analysis being ignored in practice due to time and budget constraints, and for that reason, the accuracy of LCA studies being criticised.

 Identify the origin of uncertainty in LCA studies, and classify each as parameter, model or scenario

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE  Areas of uncertainty origin have been identified and classified in terms of the following:  Parameter: data uncertainty which arises due to incomplete knowledge of true value of data, lack of data or measurement error  Model: uncertainty due to unknown interactions between model formulations, due to simplification, derivation of characterization factors, or aggregation of data into impact categories

 Develop method for quantifying uncertainty considering time and budget constraints  Conduct Process, Input-Output, and Hybrid LCAs of a simple system, quantifying overall uncertainty for each model  Develop a method to compare between studies that have applied various LCI methodologies  Compare three main databases (ICE, EcoInvent, GaBi) in terms of information available for conducting an uncertainty assessment  Develop a technique to make comparisons between studies that have used different databases  Apply developed methodology to a building, using the building’s Bill of Quantities (BoQ) as a data source

Data Quality Indicator Score Chart

 Scenario: uncertainty due to decisions made throughout the LCA, such as choice of system boundary, functional unit, use of weighting factors/method.  Process LCA of an electric kettle has been conducted, and work on quantifying the uncertainty is in progress  Techniques to be used:  Monte Carlo Simulations of Input LCI data  Data Quality Indicator Scores for unrepresentative data  Monte Carlo Simulations for various decision and model scenarios, for example variations in expert judgement and the characterization factors applied.

Source: Weidema et. al., 1996, Journal of Cleaner Production, 4: 167-174.

TEAM SUPERVISORS Supervisor: Dr. Aidan Duffy1 Co-Supervisor: Prof. Geoff Hammond2 1School

of Civil and Building Services Engineering, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, Ireland 1Dublin

Energy Lab, Focas Institute, Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin 8,

Ireland 2Department

of Mechanical Engineering and the International Centre for the Environment, University of Bath, Bath, UK

Contact email: deidre.wolff@mydit.ie


Centre for Industrial and Engineering Optics (IEO) BACKGROUND

COMMERCIAL RESEARCH

Centre for Industrial and Engineering Optics in DIT Kevin Street, and the holography group that it evolved from, has been working on novel photopolymer materials and their applications for more than two decades. Over this time span the research has evolved from separate postgraduate projects in photopolymer development and interferometric metrology systems into a range of applications-oriented projects that exploit the various technologies that have been developed in the centre. The centre strives to strategically balance academic research with industrial applications and is continuously seeking out new opportunities to collaborate with industry and other academics in developing holographic systems and materials.

ACADEMIC RESEARCH Much of the Centre’s current research focuses on the unique photopolymer developed by IEO, and a great deal of the basic material and systems development is carried out by postgraduate research students. Currently the group has five graduate students. Dervil Cody is improving the photopolymer using non-toxic monomers and Mohesh Moothchancery has been carrying out studies on the fundamental properties of the photopolymer such as shrinkage. Hoda Akbari is developing applications in diffractive elements made in the photopolymer, Denis Bade is developing unique holographic data writing systems and Viswanath Bavigadda recently completed his PhD thesis on interferometry using holographic elements. Tatsiana Mikulchyk is developing transmission gratings one of which would be a humidity sensor and another which is non-sensitive to humidity-.

IEO staff continue to exploit their photopolymer material and optical systems, developing a number of key applications that have commercial potential in security and sensing, and devices. For example, Dr Izabela Naydenova is developing sensing applications for photopolymer gratings, security holograms with unique identifiers and printable diffractive devices. A pressure sensitive version of the hologram which changes colour with pressure is under development by Dr Emilia Mihaylova and this has interesting applications where contact pressure needs to be measured. Dr Suzanne Martin is developing holographic diffractive devices with applications in light manipulation and distribution and investigating moisture sensitive systems. Professor Vincent Toal’s key area of expertise is in interferometric systems and classic holography.

CONSULTANCY, SERVICES AND FACILITIES IEO offers a wide range of consultancy services in the areas of optical engineering in our facilities in Kevin Street and FOCAS. This includes: •Collaborative + contract R&D projects •Problem solving and consulting •Optical system design and technical support •3D Surface height and surface roughness measurement •Holographic materials and devices

CONTACT DETAILS Suzanne Martin, Centre Manager : suzanne.martin@dit.ie 01 402 4623

suzanne.martin@dit.ie


Holographic and Optical Expertise As a research centre in DIT publications, post graduate thesis and other academic outputs are key to the sustainability of the centre. In the last decade centre has produced: • 8 PHD‟s and 5 MPhil

Also at the forefront of IEO‟s activities is fostering industrial partnerships for commercial applications of IEO‟s technologies and consulting projects in the area of optics. Industry feedback is proactively sought on all technologies with strategic alliances sought in development and implementation projects. Consultancy projects have been carried out in a wide range of industries including medical device, pharmaceutical, software, and electronic device manufacturers.

• 43 Peer reviewed journal papers • >30 conference papers and SPIE proceedings • 2 Books • “Introduction to Holography” (CRC press 2011) by Vincent Toal

Between the current staff researchers there are over 70 man years experience in the areas of holography and optics. Vincent Toal recently published a textbook on holography „Introduction to Holography‟ (published by CRC Press), which has been well received by academics around the world.

• “Advanced Holography” (Itech 2011) edited by Izabela Naydenova • Citations >500

Recent PhD graduates are working in a range of optics-related industries in different locations around the world including Singapore, India and the Netherlands. IEO postgraduate students have been very successful in presenting their research at both European and International Conferences and have contributed to the IEO‟s portfolio of 33 peer reviewed journals published within the past 5 years (see www.arrow.dit.ie). The centre also facilitates around six undergraduate degree and summer projects/placements per year and is increasing the direct input of research activity into the undergraduate curriculum. For example a Level 10 module in „Holography: Techniques and Application‟ and a Level 8 module in „Invention, Innovation and Commercialization‟ have been developed.

COLLABORATION Collaboration with other disciplines and Institutes is essential to their mission to combine academic achievement and development of commercial technologies. Within DIT, the Centre is working with the Dublin Energy Lab on holographic optical elements for applications in solar collectors and the School of Manufacturing and Design Engineering in the area of optical system design. Most postgraduate students in the Centre spend at least a few months abroad gaining experience at the laboratories of one of the IEO centre‟s international partners including the University of Caen in northern France, Joint Research Centre at Ispra in northern Italy, The University of Limerick and the Institute of Optical Materials and Technologies at the Bulgarian Academy of Science.

SUPPORT IEO has received significant support from EI to develop a range of holographic based technologies. Enterprise Ireland‟s funding for the development of Photopolymer holography began in 2006. And are supported in all aspects of commercialisation of our research by DIT Hothouse. Postgraduate students receive funding from IRCSET and SFI. IEO labs are located in DIT Kevin Street and the FOCAS research centre.

suzanne.martin@dit.ie


Interactive Holograms SECURITY HOLOGRAMS WITH RESPONSIVE FEATURES Multi-layered authentication processes are key in the fight against counterfeiters. Whilst covert features are important for customs and forensic authentication purposes, there is an increasing need to have intelligent overt authentication methods available to end users who are at risk of unknowingly purchasing unauthentic produce. Researchers in IEO have developed, alongside the individualised holograms, environmentally sensitive holograms which have applications in the brand protection industry, alone or combined with other authentication holographic devices

HUMIDITY SENSITIVE

Researchers at DIT have developed a humidity sensitive hologram which is low cost, a lightweight polymer (30–70 µm) and is easily incorporated into packaging and graphics (logos, text, numerical data and three dimensional images). To authenticate a product the end user would simply breathe on the hologram which would cause a change indicating authenticity. This is of particular interest because authentication doesn’t require specialist equipment.

The hologram can also work as a straightforward humidity sensor. Currently humidity indicator cards record humidity from 5 to 90 percent in 10 percent increments. However there are several limitations; the colour range is limited to only two or three colours, the response time to show changes in humidity is slow taking up to a few hours and a colour key is needed to interpret the reading. The typical size of a card is 1cm so there is limited space for graphics. Graphics can be designed to change with humidity so information is displayed directly without the need for a colour key. The indicator is easily read and involves a colour change over a broad colour spectrum. One small hologram can cover the entire humidity range. The speed of response can be adjusted to suit the application with fast response times of a few seconds. Detecting the humidity range from 20 – 90 percent is useful for high value products which are sensitive to humidity, especially during transit.

PRESSURE SENSITIVE

Hologram of a coin with pressure applied at two locations.

Pressure sensitive holograms have also been developed at IEO. The pressure sensitive version reacts to finger pressure by changing colour locally in the holographic image. This can also be used in authentication. Pressure sensitivity can be tailored to the application and the actual colour change is related to the amount of pressure applied so we are also exploring applications in pressure sensing for weight estimation and machine adjustment.

IP POSITION There are several patents filed and granted in relation to the technologies.

suzanne.martin@dit.ie


Speckle Interferometry

INTERFEROMETRY EXPERTISE The IEO Centre at the Dublin Institute of Technology have developed interferometric systems for non-destructive testing and measurement, including vibration analysis of materials and components. The low cost system, based on holographic technology allows wholefield measurement to sub-micron (0.01 m) precision with results displayed as video images. Current systems are optically complex and expensive to manufacture and do not normally provide wholefield or multipoint capabilities.

Static Loading – Three Point Bend

ADVANTAGES

APPLICATIONS Non-destructive testing and measurement, including vibration analysis can be used in a wide range of industrial applications including; • Automotive - car bodies and panels, automotive components, engines, braking systems and exhaust systems.

• Whole field multipoint capabilities - provide a comprehensive picture of object behaviour. • Low cost - the system uses off the shelf components combined with holographic technology (estimated at one quarter of the cost of single point LDV system). • High precision measurement

• Aerospace - turbine blades, air frames, aircraft components. • Consumer products - sound absorption and damping materials for consumer goods such as household appliances, loudspeakers, power tools, computer equipment. • Medical and healthcare - eardrum diagnostics, artificial heart valves, mechanical properties of replacement joints

• Improved Quality Control (QC). •Simplicity – easy to set up, use and maintain. •Software system including detailed analysis •Video imaging showing contours of constant displacement and contours of constant phase.

• Environmental and hostile environmental applications - machinery in hot or high voltage or contaminated environments, measurements at long range.

Vibration 6.6 kHz – Loudspeaker

vincent.toal@dit.ie


Holographic Devices PROBLEM Standard optical components such as beam splitters, lenses and mirrors are used to manipulate light in a broad range of applications from illumination of large buildings to optical fibres for telecommunications, to high magnification telescopes. However, in some applications, for example those using compact optical systems, the standard optical components may be too bulky to work well or too expensive. In other case the problem is that more than one optical component is needed in a confined space, or it would be preferable to focus some wavelengths and not others. Commercially available polymer diffractive optical elements, mass produced by stamping processes, can be a low cost alternative in some applications, but the functionality is restrictive and custom made elements are prohibitively expensive because of the high origination costs. Holographic diffractive optical elements have many advantages over stamped surface elements but to date they have not been widely available because they are difficult to fabricate with standard holographic materials. DIT’s Centre for Industrial and Engineering Optics (IEO) have developed holographic elements, fabricated in their own photopolymer. The IEO photopolymer is a self-developing holographic material with minimal shrinkage which allows the direct fabrication of the holographic elements.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION DIT’s Centre for Industrial and Engineering Optics (IEO) have developed photopolymer holographic elements, fabricated by direct exposure at Dublin Institute of Technology can be tailored to specific optical designs and have the design flexibility to re-direct light with high efficiency through angles greater than 90 degrees, to focus light and to divert certain ranges of wavelengths. For specific devices printing processes can also be used .

Fraction of light coupled into the diffracted beam (Diffraction Efficiency) as a function of incident angle for a range of device thickness – selectivity can be tailored to requirements (data from Hoda Akbari, Dublin Institute of Technology)

ADVANTAGES •Lightweight, planar elements – fractions of a millimetre thick •Flexible design – a large range of focal lengths, angles and wavelengths. •Multifunctional – one element can perform two or three functions, e.g focussing and beam splitting, or beam manipulation with focussing and wavelength filtering •Highly flexible manufacture – some elements printable

Diffractive lens

Split beams

RESEARCH One aspect of the current research explores the potential of holographic optical elements in the collection of light from a moving source, such as the sun, and its direction into a fixed detector for application in solar concentrators. Specific applications such as up converters are of particular interest because Holographic Optical Elements can be used to separate specific sections the solar spectrum, as well as having useful focussing effects.

IP POSITION The photopolymer is protected by a patent application. More specific IP is under development.

suzanne.martin@dit.ie


OPTRACE

PROBLEM Product counterfeiting is a worldwide problem which costs companies and governments billions in revenue every year with the loss of sales and tax income. Counterfeit goods are not only inferior in quality but may also be a risk to consumers as the number of dangerous products on the market increases. The pharmaceutical industry is particularly susceptible to counterfeiting. According to the World Health Organisation an estimated 10% of drugs worldwide are counterfeit costing the industry approximately $40 billion per year and some of these have even caused fatalities. The industry is continuously increasing measures against counterfeiting and the introduction of new regulations such as the Falsified Medicines Directive has led to the need for improved traceability and authentication of products. Holograms are a well accepted authentication device, but existing holograms are always identical to one another and don’t have any individual features that could be used for further verification. This is because traditionally holograms are mass produced from an expensive "master" hologram and hence it is not commercially viable to individualise them. The typical holograms a consumer sees applied to packaging are identical for each product range. These are quite easy for the counterfeiter to replicate and may not provide sufficient protection.

TECHNOLOGY SOLUTION DIT’s Centre for Industrial and Engineering Optics (IEO) has developed a novel hologram production technique which allows the mass production of individualised holograms. With this product consumers will be able to check the authenticity of the product they have purchased. A unique holographic code on a transparent film will be placed on the packaging of each product. When you remove and hold it up to a light source you will be able to see the code which can then be verified against a code written on the packaging. Alternatively using a web based or smart phone application or a text message you can verify the product is the genuine article. As each code is unique counterfeiters will not be able to reproduce it.

ROUTE TO COMMERCIALISATION This technology has received significant interest, having been developed under the lead of PI Dr. Izabela Naydenova with funding from Enterprise Ireland’s Commercialisation Fund in the previous 2 years. Future product development is currently underway with new post – doctorate researcher Dr. Lina Persechini currently developing the nanotaggants for IEO’s photopolymer- adding an additional covert feature to the product offering. This work is carried out in conjunction with the University of Limerick with funding from Enterprise Ireland’s “Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Technology Centre” . This is an industry lead project with support from leading pharmaceutical, label and machine vision companies with experience in the area of anti counterfeiting on the panel of advisors. A spin out company will be established in the coming months with the target of having a trial production run completed by the final quarter of 2013.

IP POSITION There are several patents filed and granted for this technology.

Izabela.naydenova@dit.ie


National Institute for Transport and Logistics (NITL) BACKGROUND The National Institute for Transport and Logistics (NITL) was established at DIT in 1998 as Ireland’s “centre of excellence” in transport, logistics and supply chain management (SCM). Our mission is to support the improvement of competitive advantage in organisations through the effective application of world class concepts and methodologies. We achieve this through our portfolio of expert services: • Postgraduate and advanced corporate education; • Awareness creation; • Consultancy and advice; and,

RECENT PUBLICATIONS

• Academic and applied research.

RESEARCH INTERESTS NITL’s research is focussed on developing rich and deep insights into the application of supply chain management (SCM) theory in practice. It also aims to develop tools that can facilitate this process across all major links in the supply chain (including manufacturing, distribution and retail). Our major current interests relate to: • The rhetoric and reality of supply chain integration (SCI); • The application of design thinking in SCM; • Supply chain design methodologies; • Sustainable supply chain design and operations; • Green initiatives in the third party logistics (3PL) sector; and, • The use and role of information and communications technology (ICT) in small 3PLs.

The core team members are Dr. Edward Sweeney, Pamela O’Brien and Antonio de Linares. We work collaboratively with academic colleagues from Ireland and internationally, as well as in partnership with companies in all major sectors of the Irish economy including life sciences, electronics, food and drink, third party logistics, retail and the public sector.

• Sweeney, E., “The People Dimension in Logistics and Supply Chain Management – its Role and Importance”, Chapter 6 in Supply Chain Management: Perspectives, Issues and Cases (eds. Passaro, R. and Thomas, A.), McGraw-Hill, pp. 73-82, 2013. • Evangelista, P., Mogre, R., Perego, A., Raspagliesi, A. and Sweeney, E., “A Survey Based Analysis of IT Adoption and 3PLs’ Performance”, Supply Chain Management: an International Journal, Vol. 11, No. 2, pp. 172-186, 2012. • Evangelista, P., Esposito, E., McKinnon, A. and Sweeney, E. (eds.), Supply Chain Innovation for Competing in Highly Competitive Markets: Challenges and Solutions, Business Science Reference (ISBN: 978-1-60960-585-8), 2011.

• SCM understanding and adoption in Ireland;

TEAM

Our research has been widely disseminated in peer-reviewed international academic journals, books and book chapters, international conferences and symposia, trade publications and practitioner journals, as well as in the mainstream media. This can be accessed via the NITL Knowledge Base and ARROW@DIT. The following is a small but representative selection of our recent scholarly output:

• Sweeney, E. and Park, D., Review of Dynamic Supply Chain Alignment – A New Business Model for Peak Performance in Enterprise Supply Chains Across All Geographies by John Gattorna and friends, Gower Publishing, 2009 in International Journal of Logistics: Research and Applications, Vol. 13. No. 1, pp. 95-96, 2010. • Sweeney, E. (ed.), Supply Chain Management and Logistics in a Volatile Global Environment, Blackhall Publishing (ISBN: 978-1-84218-177-5), 2009.

CONTACT DETAILS We are an integral part of the DIT College of Engineering & Built Environment and are based in the DIT’s Bolton Street Campus. Contact details of the core team are as follows: Edward Sweeney (edward.sweeney@dit.ie) Pamela O’Brien (pamela.obrien@dit.ie) Antonio de Linares (antonio.delinares@dit.ie) Phone: +353-1-4024023 URL: www.nitl.ie

Visit us at www.nitl.ie


Photonics Research Centre (PRC) RESEARCH THEMES The DIT Photonics Research Centre undertakes research in a number of areas of photonics, with a particular emphasis on optical fibre sensing.

FIBER OPTIC SENSORS Temperature Sensors Strain Sensors Refractive Index Sensors Displacement Sensors Biosensors Voltage and Current Sensors

Multimode Fiber Singlemode Fiber

Singlemode Fiber

z axis: propagating direction

FIBER OPTIC SYSTEMS FOR SENSING APPLICATIONS Passive Wavelength Measurement Systems FBG Interrogation Systems Modelling, Design and Fabrication of Fibre Filters Fibre Optic Systems for Acoustics

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS AND COLLABORATIONS There are currently nine research projects ongoing in the Photonics Research Centre, funded by Enterprise Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland and others with the total external funding income in excess of 1.6 Million Euro. The PRC has graduate five PhDs in recent years with four more on-going. The Centre was recently awarded a Patent for a new form of disposable temperature sensor. The Centre has active collaborations with: • Optoelectronics Research Centre, University of Southampton, UK; • Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, China; • Warsaw University of Technology, Poland; • Moscow Institute of Radio-Electronics & Automatics, Russian Federation; • Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India

SMART FIBER STRUCTURES Smart Sensors for Engineering Structures Sensors for Surgical Instruments

RECENT PUBLICATIONS The Centre typically publishes over 30 peer-reviewed publications yearly. Some very recent journal papers are:

MODELLING OF PHOTONIC DEVICES Fibre Optic Waveguides Planar Lightwave Circuits Photonic Crystal Fibres

PHOTONIC CRYSTAL FIBRE

SILICA CORE

Liquid Crystal Infiltrated PCF Devices/Sensors PCF Interferometric Sensors Sensors for Humidity and Dew-point

journal

• Bo, L., Wang, P., Semenova, Y. and Farrell, G.: “Ultra-sensitive fiber refractometer based on an optical microfiber coupler”, Accepted for publication in Photonics Technology Letters, December 2012. • Wang, P., Ding, M., Bo, L., Semenova, Y., Wu, Q. and Farrell, G.: “A silica singlemode fibre-chalcogenide multimode fibre-silica singlemode fibre structure”, Photonics Letters of Poland, Vol 4, No. 4, 2012 • Mathew, J., Semenova, Y. and Farrell, G.: “Fiber optic hybrid device for simultaneous measurement of humidity and temperature”, Accepted for publication in IEEE Sensors, January 2013 • Wang, P., Ding, M., Bo, L., Semenova, Y., Wu, Q. and Farrell, G.: “Packaged chalcogenide microsphere resonator with high Q-factor”, Applied Physics Letters, Vol.102, Issue 13,

NANOPHOTONICS

• Ma, Y., Farrell, G., Semenova, Y., Chan, H.P. and Wu, Q.: “Hybrid Plasmonic Biosensor for Simultaneous Measurement of both Thickness and Refractive Index”, Accepted in Infrared Physics and Technology, April 2013

Tapered Fibre Devices and Sensors Microresonators Surface Plasmon Resonance Devices

• Mathew, J., Semenova, Y. and Farrell, G.: Experimental demonstration of a high sensitivity humidity sensor based on an Agarose coated transmission type photonic crystal fiber interferometer, Accepted in Applied Optics, May 2013

TEAM The Centre is in the School of Electronic and Communications Engineering at the Dublin Institute of Technology on the Kevin St. Campus. The Centre is led by its Director Prof. Gerald Farrell, supported by senior researchers, post-doctoral researchers and several doctoral graduate students.

CONTACT DETAILS For further information please visit www.prc.dit.ie Email: gerald.farrell@dit.ie


Current-Voltage Sensing ABSTRACT Researchers in the Photonics Research Centre (PRC) have developed a novel all-fibre electrical current and voltage sensor technology using a ferronematic liquid crystal (LC) infiltrated photonic crystal fibre. The operating principle of the proposed sensor is based on magneto-electric effect in the LC which results in the change of light transmittance by the optical fibre.

Photonic Crystal Fiber

Cross-Section

LCPCF Sensor Head ~ 1 mm

SILICA CORE

The resultant change in the transmittance serves as a measure of electric current in the conductor inducing the magnetic field or voltage applied to the electrodes surrounding the optical fibre.

~ 125 μm

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE Due to the nature of the LC molecules, when an external electric or magnetic field is applied to the liquid crystal, the dipole molecules tend to orient themselves along the direction of the field. Recent studies of LCs doped with nanoparticles have pointed the way toward innovative improvement of the physical and electro-optical properties of LCs. Such enhancement of the electro-optical properties of LCs is dependent on the size, type, concentration, and intrinsic characteristics of the nanoparticles used for doping. In the case of ferromagnetic nanoparticles, the large permanent magnetic moments couple with the LC director, leading to improvements in their magnetic properties. This is known as a ferronematic LC. In comparison with pure LCs ferronematic LCs are more sensitive to low electric and magnetic fields hence making these materials very attractive for sensing applications.

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL The optical fibre solution developed by the PRC offers the potential for simultaneous current and voltage sensing at multi-kHz response rates. The potential applications of the proposed technology are: • Grid monitoring/Smart grids. • Phase measurement within networks • Protection for so-called frequency convertors as a part of subsystems associated with wind turbines and other large scale electrical systems.

One possible approach to sensing which would benefit from both very high sensitivity of the doped LC materials to electric and magnetic fields and the well known advantages of the fibre optics is the use of LC infiltrated photonic crystal fibres.

Phase measurement units SEM micrograph of a PM-1550-01 PCF, Orientation of LC molecules within PCF holes below and above the threshold electric field.

Power distribution networks

Protection of frequency converters Linear transmission response of the LC infiltrated PCF PM-1550-01 in the range of voltages from 100 V to 400 V; LC infiltrated PCF probe for electric field sensing with electrodes. A similar approach is used for the design of a magnetic field sensor. As the magnetic field induced by a conductor is proportional to the current in the conductor inducing this magnetic field (Ampere’s law), the proposed structure is suitable for current sensing assuming the necessary calibration.

TEAM / FUNDERS Photonics Research Centre DIT Hothouse Commercial Feasibility Study project funded by Enterprise Ireland

Contact: Dr. Yuliya Semenova yuliya.semsnova@dit.ie

Smart grids


Fibre Optic Sensors ABSTRACT Surgeons involved in minimally invasive surgery (MIS) rely on their sense of touch and experience to feel the interaction between their instruments/devices and the tissue structures of the patient. The use of optical fibres has proven to be a promising sensing technique to enable feedback of the instrument - tissue force interaction to a surgeon.

 MRI compatibility, bio-compatibility, can withstand temperatures and pressures during sterilisation.

high

0.20

LMA 10

nm

0.15

autoclave

0.10

0.05

0.00

-0.05

-0.10 20

 Miniature (~ 125 microns) design suitable for embedding in MIS devices.

Sensorized laparoscopic surgical blade

Experimental arrangement for strain/force characterization

Wavelength shift

The Photonics Research Centre (PRC) based in DIT is carrying out research in the integration of optically based sensing schemes into laparoscopic surgical instruments. As a consequence of this work new and alternative optical fibre force sensing solutions have been developed specifically for Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS) with the following advantages,

End facet of PCF

Wavelength shift in PCF sensor on application of strain/force

30

40

50

60

Temperature C

Low temperature sensitivity of the PCF strain sensor

Strain/force sensitivity of the embedded PCF sensor

 Easy embedding within polymeric and metallic host structures.  Temperature insensitive  Low cost sensor, due to ease of manufacture, and sensor interrogation unit (also developed by PRC) . Robot Assisted Surgery

Some of the potential areas are within radioactive medical environments and in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems where electronic sensors cannot operate. In laparoscopic anastomosis procedures current practice relies on the judgement of the surgeon to ensure that required compressive forces are applied to the tissue during the surgery.

Positional Information

Visual Feedback

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL

Force Sensing Issues

Surgical scissor blades

Lack of FORCE Feedback

Fiber optic sensors developed by the PRC can improve the quality and reliability of instrument/tissue interaction force measurement. For intraluminal staplers, fiber optics sensors can provide small, low cost, unobtrusive force sensing transducers to facilitate the measurement of forces at the instrument/tissue interface, which are then relayed to the surgeon, thereby reducing complications arising during anastomosis procedures.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE The Photonic Research Centre has developed fiber optic sensor technology based on fiber Bragg gratings (FBG) and photonic crystal fiber (PCF) to provide accurate and real-time force feedback during MI surgical procedures. A FBG based strain sensing system employs a macro-bend filter based FBG interrogation system which eliminates the influence of temperature and substantially reduces the cost of the entire sensing system. The measurement of interaction forces for MIS devices, sensorized with PCF interferometric sensors, has also been demonstrated. Due to the low temperature sensitivity of PCF sensors, a temperature insensitive force characterization and feedback can be implemented to assist MIS. Laparoscopic Surgical Staplers from Ethicon Endo-Surgery Telerobotic surgical system with robotic arms

TEAM / FUNDERS

Schematic of the sensing system

Partners: Photonics Research Centre (PRC), Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland School of Manufacturing & Design Engineering, DIT

Experimental arrangement for strain characterization and a surgical blade surface mounted with FBG sensor

Funders: With support from SFI/EI – Technology Innovation Development Award (TIDA) Feasibility Study (SFI) and Enterprise Ireland (EI)

Contact: Prof. Gerald Farrell gerald.farrell@dit.ie


Smart Composites ABSTRACT

Schematic of the hybrid interrogation system for embedded fibre optic sensors

The Photonics Research Centre (PRC) in collaboration with Warsaw University of Technology and Aero AT - Aviation Technologies (Poland) has developed technology for measurement of various physical parameters of composite materials. The technology is based on embedding optical fibre sensors in the carbon fibre-reinforced matrix composites at the manufacturing stage.

Thin Film Filter

Techniques for embedding and interrogation of multiple types of fibre sensors in the composite parts developed by the project partners allow for: • Local and average strain measurement across a composite component; • Temperature monitoring; • Crack detection; • Measurements of amplitude and frequency of vibrations.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL

The novel hybrid technology proposed by the PRC involves embedding various types of fibre sensors for sensing of multiple parameters and a common interrogation system which allows for real-time monitoring of the parameters of interest.

In aviation, transport, marine, wind turbine applications composites reduce weight without compromising strength. The next generation of airplanes, trains, yachts, cars, wind turbine blades etc., will be lighter and stronger when made with carbon fibre composites. Continuous structural health monitoring over the lifecycle of the composite parts becomes very important for minimizing inspection costs increasing aircraft/vehicle availability by improving efficiency and accuracy of maintenance. The outcomes of this project are not limited to aviation industry and will include potential licensing of IP in future commercial aerospace, marine and wind energy applications.

Fibre Bragg gratings and photonic crystal fibre sensors can be used for local strain and temperature measurements, while polarimetric fibre sensors can be used for average strain, temperature and vibration measurements. While each individual sensor has drawbacks (e.g., a cross-sensitivity between temperature and strain), the proposed hybrid sensing approach offers a solution to this problem by the application of different fibre sensors in a complimentary manner to eliminate the drawbacks of individual sensors and to provide simultaneous measurements of multiple parameters. -12.5 -13.0

-28

zero deflection 5 mm deflection 10 mm deflection

-30 -32

zero deflection 5 mm deflection 10 mm deflection

-13.5 -14.0

Intensity dBm

Intensity dBm

-34

-14.5 -15.0 -15.5

-36 -38 -40 -42 -44

-16.0

-46

-16.5

-48

1500 1510 1520 1530 1540 1550 1560 1570 1580 1590 1600

Wavelength nm

1535

1540

1545

1550

1555

1560

1565

1570

Wavelength nm

Strain responses of various sensors in intensity, polarization and wavelength domains: polarimetric and fibre Bragg grating sensors

TEAM / FUNDERS Sensor embedding: schematic, laboratory hand lay-up method, sensor placement in a helicopter rotor blade part PRC researchers have also developed a flexible hybrid sensor demodulation system and its fabrication technique using post lift off process for interrogation of hybrid sensors embedded in composite parts. The flexible nature of the proposed demodulator allows it to be embedded inside the host composite material together with the optical fibre sensors. Fabrication of the proposed flexible device is currently ongoing using National Access Programme facilities in Tyndall Institute, Cork.

Partners: Faculty of Materials Science and Engineering, Warsaw University of Technology, Optics Division of the Faculty of Physics, Warsaw University of Technology, Photonics Research Centre, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland Aero AT ltd. Aviation Technologies, Poland Funders: Enterprise Ireland Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education With the support of European MATERA ERA-NET Call on materials

Contact: Prof. Gerald Farrell gerald.farrell@dit.ie


Centre for Radiation and Environmental Science RESEARCH INTERESTS Radiation Biology We are investigating how cells and tissues respond to radiation exposure. This helps to understand the risks associated with radiation and to work out ways to optimise patient response to radiotherapy Environmental Toxicology and Testing of New Materials We investigate toxic effects of different contaminants of environmental concern using a multi-trophic battery of freshwater and marine test species. Our current research focuses on the environmental impacts of nanomaterials. We are also screening novel anti-cancer compounds and investigating the cytotoxicity, genotoxicity and mechanism of action.

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS In the last 5 years:  ‘One to Watch’ Award, 2011  1 License, 1 patent and 5 invention disclosures  Over 75 peer reviewed publications  Over €3.75 million in research funding  24 PhD completions

Biophotonics and Imaging We investigate the use of Raman and FTIR spectroscopy for biomedical applications such as cancer screening and diagnosis. We also use these techniques to identify novel biomarkers of cellular response to, for example, radiation, chemotherapeutic drugs, nanomaterials etc.

RECENT PUBLICATIONS Jella KK, Garcia A, McClean B, Byrne HJ, Lyng FM. Cell death pathways in directly irradiated cells and cells exposed to medium from irradiated cells. Int J Radiat Biol. 2013 ;89(3):182-90 Furlong H, Mothersill C, Lyng FM, Howe O, Apoptosis is signalled early by low doses of ionising radiation in a radiation-induced bystander effect. Mutat Res. 2013;741-742:35-43 Kellett A, McCann M, Howe O, O'Connor M, Devereux M. DNA cleavage reactions of the dinuclear chemotherapeutic agent copper(II) bis-1,10 phenanthroline terephthalate. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2012;50(1):79-81 Kellett A, Howe O, O'Connor M, McCann M, Creaven BS, McClean S, FoltynArfa Kia A, Casey A, Devereux M. Radical-induced DNA damage by cytotoxic square-planar copper(II) complexes incorporating o-phthalate and 1,10-phenanthroline or 2,2'-dipyridyl. Free Radic Biol Med. 2012 ; 53(3):56476 Ali S. M. , Bonnier F. , Ptasinski K., Lambkin H. , Flynn K. , Lyng F.M. , Byrne H.J., Raman Spectroscopic mapping for the analysis of solar radiation induced skin damage, Analyst, 2013 DOI:10.1039/C3AN36617K Nawaz H, Bonnier F, Meade AD, Lyng FM, Byrne HJ. Comparison of subcellular responses for the evaluation and prediction of the chemotherapeutic response to cisplatin in lung adenocarcinoma using Raman spectroscopy Analyst. 2011 136(12):2450-63

TEAM The RESC team comprises an interdisciplinary group of 16 researchers including Centre Manager, Prof Fiona Lyng, Senior Researchers Dr Orla Howe (School of Biological Sciences) and Dr Aidan Meade (School of Physics), 3 postdoctoral level scientists, 1 research assistant and 10 postgraduate students, the majority at PhD level.

Contact Details: Please visit http://www.dit.ie/resc or contact fiona.lyng@dit.ie


Biophotonics and Imaging SUMMARY

KEY OUTPUTS / POTENTIAL

Biophotonics is the application of spectroscopic and optical methods to the measurement or imaging of processes in biology and medicine. It can involve the use of standard confocal imaging or fluorescence imaging technologies, or more novel technologies, such as Raman and/or Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) microspectroscopy. These devices measure the spectrum of light inelastically backscattered from the sample in the case of confocal Raman microspectroscopy, or the spectrum of light transmitted by the sample in the case of FTIR microspectroscopy. These measurements can be made with diffraction-limited resolution using both spectroscopic modalities, which tends to the submicron level using Raman microspectroscopy and similar resolution when FTIR is coupled with attenuated total reflection (ATR). In the RESC at the Focas Research Institute, DIT we are fortunate to have access to state-of-theart Raman and FTIR imaging spectrometers. These have enabled us to pioneer the use of biospectroscopy for the development of platforms and devices for cancer diagnostics, particularly from cervical cancer tissue and smears, and latterly for use in prognostic and therapeutic applications such as radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Some of this work has moved to device development and commercialisation.

•Key outputs:

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE •Prof. Fiona Lyng winner of the Enterprise Ireland ‘One-to-Watch’ award, 2011; •Over €5 million competitive funding secured since 2004; •SFI TIDA and SFI Investigator Project awards 2013 •Member of National Biophotonics and Imaging Platform, Ireland;

• Licence to Raman Diagnostics, Dec 2011 • 4 PhD and 1 MPhil graduates since 2005, 3 PhD’s in progress; • Over 40 journal and proceedings publications; • Potential for expansion into development of methods for detection of food, air and water borne pathogens, imaging of materials and bio-interactions;

KEY PUBLICATIONS Ali S. M. , Bonnier F. , Ptasinski K., Lambkin H. , Flynn K. , Lyng F.M. , Byrne H.J., Raman Spectroscopic mapping for the analysis of solar radiation induced skin damage, Analyst, 2013 DOI:10.1039/C3AN36617K A.A. Shvedova, A.A. Kapralov, W.H. Feng, E.R. Kisin, A. Murray, R.R. Mercer, C.M. St Croix, M. Lang, S.C. Watkins, N. Konduru, B.L. Allen, J. Conroy, G.P. Kotchey, B.M. Mohamed, A.D. Meade, Y. Volkov, A. Star, B. Fadeel, V. E. Kagan, Impaired clearance and enhanced pulmonary inflammatory/fibrotic response to carbon nanotubes in myeloperoxidasedeficient mice, PLoS One, 7(3):e30923 (2012) Nawaz H, Bonnier F, Meade AD, Lyng FM, Byrne HJ. Comparison of subcellular responses for the evaluation and prediction of the chemotherapeutic response to cisplatin in lung adenocarcinoma using Raman spectroscopy Analyst. 2011 136(12):2450-63 A.D. Meade, C. Clarke, H. J. Byrne, and F. M. Lyng, "Fourier Transform Infrared microspectroscopy and multivariate methods for radiobiological dosimetry " Radiation Research, 173, 225-237, (2010)

•Member of EU FP7 Consortium ‘DoReMi’; Highly Cited: A.D. Meade, P. Knief, F.M Lyng, H.J. Byrne, Growth substrate induced functional changes elucidated by FTIR and Raman spectroscopy in in-vitro cultured human keratinocytes, Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 387 (5), 1717-1728, 2007 (IF: 3.5) F.M. Lyng, E.Ó Faoláin, J. Conroy, A.D. Meade, P. Knief, B. Duffy, M.B. Hunter, J.M. Byrne, P. Kelehan and H.J. Byrne, Vibrational Spectroscopy for Cervical Cancer Pathology, from biochemical analysis to diagnostic tool, Experimental and Molecular Pathology, 82(2), 121-129 (2007) (IF: 2.1)

TEAM / FUNDERS • Prof. Fiona Lyng; • Dr. Aidan Meade; • Dr. Orla Howe; • Dr. Franck Bonnier; • Funding: • SFI RFP, EI Technology Development, EU FP7 (DoReMi), PRTLI Cycle 4 (National Biophotonics and Imaging Platform) • Colleagues at: • Department of Surgery, Trinity College Dublin; Department of Radiation Oncology, Trinity College Dublin; Department of Pathology, Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital

Contact Details: http://www.dit.ie/resc/


Environmental Toxicology Summary

Cytotoxicity screening

The RESC has a longstanding international reputation for their expertise in the environmental and toxicological assessment of many fresh water and marine based organisms by incorporating techniques such as primary culture and battery testing mechanisms. In recent years this experience has been aligned to interdisciplinary collaborations nationally and internationally and has been extended to include toxicity screening of many novel therapeutic agents such as chemotherapeutic drugs/NSAIDS and nanomaterials by incorporating cytotoxicity and genotoxicity screening and further molecular mechanistic work to elucidate the modes of action of novel compounds/materials.

Over 60 publications have incorporated cytotoxicity screening of environmental pollutants, radiation, novel drugs and nanomaterials. An array of in vitro cytotoxicity assays on normal and tumor cells line from a central cell bank of approx 150 cell types are described. These assays measure a variety of biological endpoints such as viability, ROS induction, apoptosis etc.

Environmental toxicology There have been over 100 publications in the RESC specifically in environmental toxicology. Many of these projects were in close collaboration with the Marine Institute and more recently NIVA (Oslo). This work was done on mussels, shrimp, rainbow trout from different areas and testing has also been done using both fresh water and marine test batteries. More recently the focus has been on nanotoxicology to test the ‘Effects of environmental factors on the toxicity & bioavailability of standard manufactured nanoparticles using a battery of marine species ‘(DIT, NIVA Norway, University of Oslo [Yggdrasil funded]) and ‘Interaction of nanoparticles with ecotoxicologically relevant species’ [EPA funded].

[Cu(phen)2(ph)] (1)

[Cu(phen)2(isoph)] (2)

Genotoxicity screening There has been more than 25 publications screening genotoxicity of radiation, novel drugs and nanomaterials. This incorporates assays measuring chromosomal damage, single strand DNA damage (Comet assay), double strand DNA damage (γ-H2AX assay) and nuclease scission activity. {Cu(phen)2(μ-terph)}2terph (3)

Nucella lapilus

Fresh water Battery testing

Collaborators & Funders Internal : Focas Research Institute, Environmental Health Sciences Institute, Nanolab, IPBRC, School of Biological Science National: Marine Institute, Dr Kellett (DCU), Dr McCann (NUIM), International: NIVA OSLO, University of Leuven, Belgium

Marine water Battery testing

Decomposer

Decomposer Microtox®

Microtox®

Primary Producer

Producer

Primary Producer Chlorella vulgaris

P. subcapitata

S. costatum

(Macrophyte)

Lemna minor

Funders: SFI, EPA, PRTLI Cycle 4, Cycle 5

T. suecica

Producer (Macrophyte C. tenuicorne

Primary Consumer

Primary Consumer D. magna

T. platyurus

A.tonsa

T. battagliai Secondar y Consumer

Secondary Consumer Fish cell lines e.g. RTG-2

Contact Details: http://www.dit.ie/resc/

C. volutator


Radiation Biology SUMMARY DIT research in Radiobiology has been ongoing since the 1970s with the Radiation Science Centre established in 1990. The effects of ionising and non-ionising radiation have been investigated. The main goals are to understand the risks associated with radiation exposure and to identify ways of optimising patient response to radiotherapy . Non-targeted (non-DNA) effects such as bystander effects (effects in cells not hit by a radiation track), genomic instability (effects in the progeny of irradiated cells) and adaptive responses (in cells exposed to a high challenging dose after pretreatment with a low adapting dose) have been the main focus over the last 10-15 years. Translational radiation research, involving the correlation of patient radiosensitivity with radiotherapy response and the investigation of biomarkers of radiosensitivity, is also a key focus.

HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE  Over 100 peer reviewed journal publications;

 Over €6 million in competitive funding;  Member of EU FP6 Consortium ‘NOTE’;  Member of EU FP7 Consortium ‘DoReMi’

KEY PUBLICATIONS  Jella KK, Garcia A, McClean B, Byrne HJ, Lyng FM. Cell death pathways in directly irradiated cells and cells exposed to medium from irradiated cells. Int J Radiat Biol. 2013 ;89(3):182-90  Furlong H, Mothersill C, Lyng FM, Howe O, Apoptosis is signalled early by low doses of ionising radiation in a radiation-induced bystander effect. Mutat Res. 2013;741-742:35-43  Lyng FM, Howe OL, McClean B. Reactive oxygen species-induced release of signalling factors in irradiated cells triggers membrane signalling and calcium influx in bystander cells. Int J Radiat Biol. 2011 87 (7) 683-695  Nugent S, Mothersill CE, Seymour C, McClean B, Lyng FM, Murphy JE., Altered mitochondrial function and genome frequency post exposure to gradiation and bystander factors Int. J. Radiat. Biol. 2010, 86, 829–841  Meade AD, Byrne HJ, Lyng FM, Spectroscopic and Chemometric Approaches to Radiobiological Analyses, Mutation Research Review 2010 704(1-3):108-114  Meade AD, Clarke C, Byrne HJ, Lyng FM, Fourier Transform Infrared microspectroscopy and multivariate methods for biological dosimetry Radiation Research 2010 173(2):225-37.  Howe O, O’ Sullivan J, Nolan B, Vaughan J, McClean B, Clarke C, Lyng FM. Do radiation-induced bystander effects correlate to the intrinsic radiosensitivity of individuals and have clinical significance? 2009, Radiation Research 171(5):5219.

TEAM / FUNDERS  Prof. Fiona Lyng;  Dr. Aidan Meade;  Dr. Orla Howe;  Dr. Isabel Vega Carrascal;  SFI RFP, EU FP7 (DoReMi), PRTLI Cycle 4 (National Biophotonics and Imaging Platform)

Contact Details: http://www.dit.ie/resc/


Graduate Research School All graduate students are required to complete generic modules during the 4 year programme including Communication Skills, Ethics & Social Understanding, Personal effectiveness, Team-working & leadership, Entrepreneurship & Innovation and Professional & Career Management. All graduate students also complete discipline specific modules which are tailored to their research project such as Applied Optics, Drug Delivery, Food Modelling, Solar Energy, Antenna Design and Technology. The integration of training and research ensures that our students are well suited to the modern business, commercial and industrial environments as well as the more traditional careers in academia and research.

INTERNSHIPS ABOUT THE SCHOOL

DIT has an obligation to research sponsors to show a strong economic return to the Irish economy. Flexible and responsive KT structures in DIT facilitate collaborative

The Graduate Research School (GRS) provides a clear identity for graduate

research with leading national and multi-national companies. Internships for all of

research activities and a forum of information and consultation with both

our PhD students are one mechanism at DIT to facilitate knowledge transfer.

supervisors and research students. The GRS Board is responsible for developing and monitoring the administration of the Institute’s regulations for

Benefits to the Research Student

postgraduate studies through research. The GRS Office provides a

Short term internships in industry add value to the final thesis but also enable the

comprehensive support service to all research students and supervisors

student to gain invaluable transferrable skills and work experience.

including maintenance of the research register and administrative support for the progression and examination of research students. The team also assists the Graduate Research School in the co-ordination of structured PhD programmes and the provision of events to enhance the graduate student learning experience.

Benefits to the Employer Employers participating in internship programmes not only gain the skills of a researcher but the experience is reinvested in the company and ultimately in the Irish economy.

PhD PROGRAMMES PhD programmes at DIT are structured, specified programmes of education

WORK-BASED PhD

and training that are research-based like traditional PhD programmes, but include activities that support the acquisition of a range of relevant specialist

Joint PhDs, resource sharing and researcher mobility are key to knowledge transfer.

and generic skills. At DIT our PhD programme has 4 streams:

The academic-industry interface can be strengthened through DIT supervised,

New Material & Technologies

Iwork-based, research. The flexible structures at DIT allow part-time PhD

Information & Media Technologies

registration for people working full-time with exciting ideas for original research of

Environment & Health

benefit to their industry. This approach successfully allows the transfer of

Society, Culture & Enterprise

knowledge across the academic-industry interface and is integral to accelerating

Graduate students on one of these programmes complete a specialised

outputs and translation of knowledge.

research project and simultaneously develop a range of discipline specific and generic skills and competencies in interdisciplinary research environments utilizable by industry and the professions.

College Logo

Contact: graduateresearch@dit.ie


Tourism 1. Research objectives:

Why do they co-operate?

To identify the type and extent of co-operation between arts & culture and tourism organisations

To identify why they engage in cross-sector co-operation

To ascertain the barriers to co-operation

To identify ways in which co-operation between the sectors can be encouraged

2. Key Findings:

What would encourage more cooperation?

What type of co-operation are they engaging in?

Contact Dr. Ziene Mottiar ziene.mottiar@dit.ie Dr. Bernadette Quinn bernadette.quinn@dit.ie Dr. Theresa Ryan theresa.ryan@dit.ie

Funded by the Fรกilte Ireland Applied Research Scheme

71% thought Barriers existed

Contact Details: ziene.mottiar@dit.ie


Community Links KEY ACHIEVEMENTS - Awarded Road Safety Authority Leading Lights Award 2010 for third level education, for ongoing partnership with the Garda Road Safety Unit on a range of research projects relating to road safety - Awarded EU Framework 7 Capacities funding for PERARES (Public Engagement in Research and Research Engagement in Society) – an EU-wide project with over 20 partners which aims to increase involvement by civil society in research (2010-14)

RESEARCH INTERESTS We support research across all DIT disciplines which responds to questions and concerns from underserved communities and civil society. Research questions are designed in collaboration between community partners, academic supervisors, and DIT students, and are carried out by students as part of the curriculum, from PhD to undergraduate dissertations. Some recent projects include:

- Funding for two PhD research projects secured by DIT academic staff in collaboration with community partners (the PhDs will be collaboratively supervised), in Law (Dr Mary Rogan and the Irish Penal Reform Trust) and in Product Design (Mr Bernard Timmins and Enable Ireland). - Innovation Dublin 2011 and 2012 - Dublin City Council have provided the Atrium Space in Wood Quay Civic Offices for two years running to showcase these DIT collaborative research projects with communities.

- PhD in Product Design, investigating and developing assistive technologies, with Enable Ireland - PhD in Social Science, investigating concepts of mental health in Men’s Groups, with a range of Irish Men’s Groups - MSc in Environmental Health, researching perceptions of drink driving limits and behaviour among drivers, with Garda Road Safety Unit - MA in Professional Design Practice, researching and designing a 21st anniversary publication with Home-Start Blanchardstown. - BEng (Hons) Electrical/Electronic Engineering, researching and developing a tailgating detection system for cars, which detects and records number plates of vehicles, with the Garda Road Safety Unit - BSc (Hons) Human Nutrition and Dietetics, researching food provision on an oncology ward, with CanTeen

TEAM Staff on the Programme liaise with academic staff in DIT to match them with community partners with research questions in their discipline. Academic staff who have supervised community-based research to date include: - Dr Claire McDonnell and Dr Barry Foley, School of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences

RECENT PUBLICATIONS Bates, C. and Burns, K. (2012) 'Community-engaged student research: online resources, real world impact', in Quinn, A. M., Bruen, C., Allen, M., Dundon, A. and Diggins, Y. (eds.), The Digital Learning Revolution in Ireland: Case Studies from the National Learning Resources Service, Cambridge, Cambridge Scholars Publishing. McCann, S. (2012): 'Learning From Mentoring Relationships Within and Between Higher Education Institute Staff'. Living Knowledge: International Journal of Community Based Research, No. 10, May, pp. 7-9. Bates, C. and Gamble, E. (2011) ‘Alternatives to industrial work placement at Dublin Institute of Technology’, Higher Education Management and Policy Journal, 23 (2)

- Dr Mary Rogan and Ms Phil Keogh, School of Social Sciences and Law - Dr Julie Dunne, Mr Greg Burke and Mr Victor Hrymak, School of Food Science and Environmental Health

CONTACT DETAILS

- Dr Catherine Gorman, School of Hospitality Management and Tourism

Dr Catherine Bates and Ms Sinead McCann

- Dr Edward Brennan, School of Media

Programme for Students Learning With Communities

- Dr Emma Robinson and Mr Gavin Duffy, School of Electrical Engineering Systems

DIT Access and Civic Engagement Office

- Mr Bernard Timmins, Ms Leah Mitchell, and Ms Claire Brougham, School of Manufacturing and Design Engineering

slwc@dit.ie

Grangegorman Lower, Dublin 7.

- Dr John Gilligan and Ms Deirdre Lawless, School of Computing - Ms Sheila Sugrue, School of Biological Sciences

Contact : slwc@dit.ie

(01) 402 7616


Action Research Key Achievements • Identification of new tourism enterprises that build on existing resources • Use of new technologies to develop an insight into and a profile of place • Identification of events ( family, cultural, seasonal) as potential pull factors • Creative image, brand and communication s strategy The Team with Slane Community Forum and members of Meath Tourism and County Council May 2013

• Destination policy and planning evaluation • Marketing Planning

The Project This project is a result of collaboration between the Department of Hospitality Management and Tourism, Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) and Slane Community Forum and Local Heroes, County Meath and DIT ‘Students in Action ‘ pilot initiative. This year, six modules focused on a specific destination and community: Slane, County Meath • Strategic Marketing Communications • Event Industry Studies • Destination and Product Marketing Planning ( with Students Learning With Communities) • Tourism Enterprise Development • Tourism Policy and Planning • Etourism

Team and Contact Details

Some Relevant Publications • Conway, A.: Community Tourism Groups: Development for Sustainability. In Innovation in Tourism Planning (Andrews, N., Flanagan, S., Ruddy, J. eds). Dublin, Tourism Research Centre, DIT, 2002 • Conway, A. and O'Connor, Dr. N. (2011) Student Perspectives on how Higher Education in Ireland can Help Meet the Needs of the Irish Economy. Paper presented at the INTED2011 Conference, Valencia, Spain, March 7th-9th, 2011. ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3.

Ann Conway ann.conway@dit.ie

Dr Ruth Craggs ruth.craggs@dit.ie

• Gorman, C. ( 2013) Irish Cultural Tourism: Case Study of Policy Development (Chap. 9) in Cultural Tourism eds. edited by Razaq Raj, Kevin A. Griffin, Nigel D. Morpeth . Pub. Cab International

Dr. Catherine Gorman catherine.gorman@dit.ie

• Quinn, B. ( 2013) Key Concepts in Event Management Pub. Sage

Dr Ziene Mottiar ziene.mottiar@dit.ie

Dr. Bernadette Quinn bernadette.quinn@dit.ie

Dr Theresa Ryan theresa.ryan@dit.ie

• Quinn, B. with Ryan, T., Mottiar, Z. (2011) The Dynamic Role of Entrepreneurs in Destination Development. Tourism Planning & Development, ifirst 20/02/12

Catherine. Gorman@dit.ie


3S GROUP – SUSTAINABLE SMART SOLUTIONS FOR COMPLEX SYSTEMS

Dynamic Capacity Model for Planning Elderly Care in Ireland 1. Abstract

4. Problem Description

Global population aging is creating an immense pressure on healthcare facilities making them unable to cope with the growing demand for elderly healthcare services. Current demand-supply gap causes prolonged waiting times for patients and substantial cost burdens for healthcare systems due to delayed discharges. This study describes a project aimed at presenting modeling and simulation to address elderly care pathways within the Irish healthcare system. The management of frail patients admitted to acute hospitals and the introduction of the new intermediate care beds are alternative interventions that healthcare executives are interested in simulating to examine their impact on the performance of the elderly care system. Decision support model comprised of simulation model and analysis tools have enabled the management to assess the current system performance under the critical financial situation. It also highlights the most significant decision variables that affect elderly patient flow within the system.

2. Population Aging: Facts & Figures • There are more elderly people today than ever before. • World’s elderly population is expected to grow from 650 million to 2 billion people by 2050. • European elderly population is forecasted to increase from 15% (108 million) to 26% by 2050. • In Ireland, the elderly population (65+) is projected to grow from 500,000 to 1.3 million over the next 30 years.

5. Conceptual Model: Patient Care Pathways

6. Key Performance Indicators • Acute waiting time Average time spent by patients waiting for admission into an acute hospital.

 Increasing demand.  Variability in patients’ arrival patterns and frailty levels.  Limited bed resources.

• Acute access Ratio of admitted elderly patients to the demand for admission.

 ED Overcrowding  Extended waiting times.  Random Patient allocation

• Average cost per patient Calculated by dividing total cost incurred through bed usage by the total number of discharged patients.

 Higher mortalty rates.  Significant increase in cycle time.  High unjustified costs.  Unbalanced resource utilization.

• Throughput rate Total number of elderly patients discharged per year.

7. Scenarios (a) Maximum Acute LOS • Setting a target for maximum acute length of stay of 18 days instead of the current 45+ days. (b) Intermediate Care • Introducing a transitional venue that offers beds for patients to spend time until they are placed in a nursing home, instead of utilizing an acute or rehabilitation bed.

8. Statistical Analysis Methodology: 1. Fractional factorial Design of Experiment using an L27 Orthogonal Array to test 6 factors at 3 levels. 2. Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) 3. Regression Analysis Bonferroni Correction Significance Level

PT

Source of Variation Model A: Acute bed capacity B: Rehab. bed capacity C: LTC bed capacity D: Acute LOS

/ n = 0.00278

Results: • Length of stay in rehabilitation and percentage of patients that receive rehabilitation are the only significant factors that affect the throughput rate.

• Elderly patients represent 11% of the Irish population, but account for up to 50% of hospital bed usage. • Around 20% of elderly patients are frail, suffering from an array of medical conditions that create a complex burden of disease and thus require an extended length of stay in the hospital.

3. Model Development Framework

• Regression produced negative coefficients for the two significant factors indicating they are both inversely proportional to the throughput rate. This is explained by the fact that increasing the percentage and LOS of rehabilitation patients decreases throughput rate as less patients are discharged per year. Effect of maximum LOS strategy on KPIs

9. Conclusion

Effect of intermedate care beds on KPIs

1

0.0272

0.0272

9.2441

0.0161

1

0.0037

0.0037

1.2573

0.2947

1

0.0011

0.0011

0.3566

0.5669

1

0.0102

0.0102

3.4698

0.0995

E: Rehab. LOS

1

0.0671

0.0671

22.8008

0.0014

F: Percentage of rehab. patients

1

0.0617

0.0617

20.9646

0.0018

1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 8 8 26

0.0029 0.0056 0.0038 0.002 0.0054 0.0033 0.009 0.0057 0.0055 0.0062 0.0055 0.0141 0.0236 0.0236 0.8913

0.0029 0.0056 0.0038 0.002 0.0054 0.0033 0.009 0.0057 0.0055 0.0062 0.0055 0.0141 0.0029 0.0029

1.0005 1.9165 1.2824 0.6796 1.8211 1.1083 3.065 1.9457 1.8736 2.1218 1.8607 4.7899

0.3465 0.2036 0.2903 0.4336 0.2141 0.3232 0.1181 0.2006 0.2083 0.1833 0.2097 0.0601

AB AC AE AF BC BE BF CE CF DE DF EF Residual Lack of Fit Total

• There are no significant interactions between any two factors.

ANOVA Table Degrees Sum of Mean of F Ratio P Value Squares Squares Freedom 18 0.8678 0.0482 16.3698 0.0002

10. Relevant 3S Group Publications

• Reduction of average length of stay of patients using acute beds in hospitals, if possible, can offer a mediocre improvement in patient flow.

Abo-Hamad, W. and Arisha, A. (2012), “Simulation-based Framework to Improve Patient Experience in an Emergency Department”, European Journal of Operational Research, Forthcoming 2012.

• Introduction of intermediate care beds can enhance the system’s performance significantly by reducing delays and patient cost of stay to almost 50%.

Abo-Hamad, W. and Arisha, A. (2012), " Multi-criteria Framework for Emergency Department in Irish Hospital", Proceedings of the 2012 Winter Simulation Conference, 9-12 December, Berlin, Germany.

Abo-Hamad, W., Crowe, J. and Arisha, A. (2012), " Towards Leaner Healthcare Facility: Application of Simulation Modelling and Value Stream Mapping", The International Workshop on Innovative Simulation for Healthcare (I-WISH), 19 - 21 September, Vienna, Austria.

• Rehabilitation phase is a bottleneck that affects untoward patient flow.

• Hence, it is strongly recommended that future study has to address the impact of the rehabilitation stage and its capacity on patient throughput.

Abo-Hamad, W., McInerney, J. and Arisha, A. (2011), “Virtual ED’: Utilisation of a Discrete Event Simulation-based Framework in Identifying ‘real-time’ Strategies to Improve Patient Experience Times in an Emergency Department”, Emergency Medicine Journal, 28, A3-A4.

Ismail, K., Abo-Hamad, W. and Arisha, A. (2010), “ Integrating Balanced Scorecard And Simulation Modelling To Improve Emergency Department Performance In Irish Hospitals”, Proceedings of the 2010 Winter Simulation Conference, 5-8 December, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.

Thorwarth, M., Harper, P. and Arisha, A. (2009), “Simulation model to investigate flexible workload management for healthcare and servicescape environment”, In Proceedings of the 2009 Winter Simulation Conference, December, Austin, Texas, USA.

• Comprehensive and periodic collection of elderly patient data is strongly recommended to provide decision makers with a solid foundation to use for process improvement strategies.

Mohamed AF Ragab (mohamed.ragab@mydit.ie), Waleed Abo Hamad (waleed.abohamad@dit.ie), and Amr Arisha (amr.arisha@dit.ie) 3S

Group, Dublin Institute of Technology (www.3sgroup.ie)


3S GROUP – SUSTAINABLE SMART SOLUTIONS FOR COMPLEX SYSTEMS

Serious Gaming Learning: Supply Chain Multi-Agents web-based simulation Game 4. SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT

Distributors - Warehousing and Distribution Dealerships - Sales and Retail Services

• Lack of integrated optimisation and simulation-based serious games for education.

Supplier : Manufacturer : Logistics : Distributor : Dealership =

(1 : 1) 300 : 50 : 400 : 50 : 200 (1 : 10) 30 : 5 : 40 : 5 : 20 (1 : 50) 6:1:8:1:4

Component1 Component2 Component3

Send

Each player will be able to view their own supply chain partners, similar to the illustration below. This will give an overview of their supply chain size and where their company fits into the overall network.

3. INTEGRATED FRAMEWORK

Internet

Server Get Updates Manager

Communication Manager

Server Communication Protocol Manager

Database User & Content Management Module

Service1 Communication Manager

Set Updates

Logistics - Transport Operations, Collection and Delivery

Client

Protocol Encoder

Manufacturers - Stamping, Assembly and Painting

Server Structure Stream from Client

Protocol Decoder

• Integration between simulation and optimisation helps as guidance for the simulation environment users to make better decisions.

Suppliers - Component Parts: Drivetrain, Powertrain, Electronics, Interior, Exterior, Accessories

Keeping to a real-life scale (1:10) for a typical global automobile supply chain (North America), the ratio of;

Internet (HTTP)

• Simulation-based serious games have been addressed as learning and training tools in the field of supply chain training and learning.

Encompasses the strategic relationships between FIVE Primary Supply Chain Partners:

Internet (HTTP)

The movement of materials as they flow from their source to the end customer. Supply Chain includes purchasing, manufacturing, warehousing, transportation, customer service, demand planning , supply planning and Supply Chain management. It is made up of the people, activities, information and resources involved in moving a product from it's supplier to customer.

Client-Server Communication Protocol

SUPPLY CHAIN PARTNER RATIO

Protocol Decoder

AUTOMOBILE SUPPLY CHAIN

THE SUPPLY CHAIN

Protocol Encoder

• Simulation tools developer trends do not involve the pedagogical perspective in the developed systems.

High levels of complexity and uncertainty, and various sources of risks, create challenges for supply chain networks in achieving satisfactory performance, but advances in Information Technology can help supply chain decision makers predict the magnitude and impact of the risks related to their decisions. The framework proposed in this paper offers a solution that integrates intelligent-agents, simulation modelling, and optimisation. Its friendly, animated, interactive web-based interface is especially designed to engage the user in a ‘serious game’ environment. Each user plays a specific role in the supply chain network, and encounters the consequences of their decisions. The optimisation engine embedded in the framework advises users about the optimum decisions and their anticipated performance outcomes. Genetics Algorithm (GA) and Case-Based Reasoning (CBR) are used to enhance the decision quality. A high-level communication protocol has been designed, developed and implemented to facilitate client/server communications, and allow intelligent-agents to inter-communicate easily and efficiently. The tool we develop offers equal value in supporting management decision-making, or in educating trainees in the realities of supply chain management.

5. SERVER STRUCTURE Receive

2. PROJECT MOTIVE

Receive

1. ABSTRACT

Simulation Model Services

Communication Agent

Service2

Database Optimisation Engine

Service3 Case-base

Rule-base

6. GAME RULES AND FEATURES Pedigree Manager: A mathematical engine has been developed to reflect the player performance in some helpful indicators (Figure 1).

Integrated Framework

The Client Interface

The Administrator Interface Administrator Statistical Charts

Administrator Control Panel

Control Panel

Playground

Timing

Status and Level

Bonus: bonus points are applied when the user satisfy orders on time.

HTTP

Administrator Agent

Rent and salaries: periodical points are reduced as rents and workers’ salaries. Warehouse Monitors

Internet Server Agent

Database Management System

Communication Protocol Manager

Deterioration: Players have to maintain their company regularly and pay for that otherwise they will face a slowness in the operations which leads to points loss.

Case-based Reasoning

HTTP

Supplier (Administrator)

User & Content Management System

Optimisation Agent

Market (Administrator)

Simulation Model

Client Agent Orders

Manufacturer1

Distribution Centre1

Manufacturer2

Distribution Centre2

Retailer 1

Orders Management: Players can receive or send orders to their partners and send or receive goods in response to these orders (Figure 2). Other Users Network

............

............

............

Retailer n

Loans: any player can initiate a loan need and the other players can respond to that which will give them a reward points on giving loans (Figure 3).

Orders

Visibility: visibility of the player’s whole supply chain network is provided to enable the player plan for the orders and information sharing.

Statistics

Updates

Retailer 2

Distribution Centre n

Goods

Information Sharing and communication: communication between players has been supported by a communication handling agent to ease the negotiation between players and with the administrator as well (Figure 4).

Goods Manufacturer n

Penalties: penalty points are applied when the user fail to satisfy orders on time

Administrator Users’ Ranks

Administrator Users’ Networks

Warehousing: when the player receive the goods, the warehousing process takes place by the player with the facilities and monitors provided for the player (Figure 5). Production Process: the manufacturer role has the ability to manage the production process with feeding parts and dispatch the finished products

The Game Process and Theory GAME CONTROLLER Random Generator (Accept/Decline) Internal and External Factors influence decline probability; machine breakdown, bad weather, no stock etc. Normal Distribution Probability.

SUPPLIER Request Component Part Order

Statistics: the administrator has a rich control panel with statistics tab to provide the ability of checking the players status and the network measures.

Accept/Decline Supplier Order

Accept/Decline Manufacturer Order RESOURCES: Warehouse, Forklift, Pallet Truck, Operator, Packing Line. Resources Increase at each XP and level advancement SUPPLY CHAIN LEARNING: Supply Chain Collaboration and contract negotiation Inventory management; Economic order quantity (EOQ) and re-order point calculations, order processing, Order Processing

Deliver Component Part Order

Optimiser: an intelligent optimisation agent was integrated into the game to detect the player actions and provide the player with the optimum decision about the ordering process as shown in Figure 6.

Deliver Component Parts Order

Accept Decline Supplier Shipment

Accept Decline Manufacturer Shipment

THIRD PARTY LOGISTICS (3PL)

49.6% Probability

34% Probability

Players Evaluation and guidance: the optimiser role is focused on evaluating the situation of the player and provides an optimum solution to help as a guidance in the process of the decision making

RESOURCES: Warehouse, Forklift, Pallet Truck, Operator, Delivery Truck. Resources Increase at each XP and level advancement SUPPLY CHAIN LEARNING: Supply Chain Collaboration and contract negotiation Order processing, Distribution Planning, crossdocking operations, transport productivity.

Collect Component Parts Order

34%

Collect Distributor Vehicle Order

34%

13.6%

13.6%

2.2%

2.2% -2σ

RESOURCES: Assembly Plant, Stamping Machine, Assembly Line, Painting Machine, Operator Resources Increase at each XP and level advancement SUPPLY CHAIN LEARNING: Supply Chain Collaboration and contract negotiation Order processing, Materials Requirement Planning (MRP), production productivity, Inventory management

Request Collection/Delivery To Distributor

Request Collection/Delivery To Manufacturer

-3σ

Logistics Control: shipping delays and random shipping accidents can be managed by the administrator to add uncertainty and variability to the system

MANUFACTURER

Request Component Part Order

Order Receiver

Random Lead-Time (Goods Delivery Generator) Lead-time variance influenced by traffic, weather, accidents, rush hour etc. Normal distributed lead-times.

Supply and Demand: are controlled randomly or by pre determined patterns controlled by the administrator.

-1σ

0

P u rc h a s e R equest

O r d e r R e c e ip t C y c le (L e a d -T im e )

B u y in g

R e c e iv in g

RESOURCES: Showhouse, Carpark, Sales Person Resources Increase at each XP and level advancement SUPPLY CHAIN LEARNING: Supply Chain Collaboration and contract negotiation Order processing, Marketing Logistics, Sales and Customer Service, Marketing.

Figure 1

Figure 2

Figure 3

Accept Decline Distributor Order Request Vehicle Order

S to r in g

Collect Dealership Vehicle Order Is s u in g

Deliver Distributor Vehicle Order

Accept Decline Distributor Shipment

Random Demand Generator. Due to a lack of historical sales figures, Demand Forecast calculated using exponential smoothing with a α value of 0.3

O rd e r Paym ent C y c le

U s e r d e p a rtm e n ts : (A s s e m b ly , P a c k a g in g , e tc .) 1. 2.

P r e p a r a tio n S e r v ic e

C u s to m e r C o n s u m p tio n /U s a g e

Figure 4

C u s to m e r P a y m e n t (if a p p lic a b le )

RESOURCES: Distribution Centre, Operator, Resources Increase at each XP and level advancement SUPPLY CHAIN LEARNING: Supply Chain Collaboration and contract negotiation Warehouse Management, Order processing, Order Processing, Inventory management

DEALERSHIP (RETAILER) Customer Demand

Deliver Dealership Vehicle Order

Accept/Decline Customer Order Random Accept/Decline Decision calculated on the probability that order is fulfilled to the correct specifications, i.e. correct quantity, product, delivery time, quality etc. Normal Distribution Probability.

Figure 6

DISTRIBUTOR Request Collection/Delivery To Dealership

7. CONCLUSION The developed model aims to:

STOCK LEVEL (U N IT S ) U s a g e R a te

R e p le n is h m e n t R a te

O v e r-s to c k e d

M a x S to c k le v e l

R e o r d e r P o in t

M in S to c k le v e l S a fe ty S to c k 0 T IM E (D A Y S ) L e a d -T im e

Customer Order Fulfilled

Figure 5

S to c k -O u t

Request Vehicle Order Accept/Decline Dealership order

• • • • •

Develop understanding of supply chain complexity and dynamics through immersion. Increase the capability of making suitable decisions in different challenging situations. Encourage students to practice group work and collaboration through web-based capabilities. Improve the management skills for students by measuring their performance and assign goals for them to be achieved. Integrating simulation within a game makes the educational tool more enjoyable and attractive, which increases the playing periods and knowledge gaining. • The game helps students to apply the theories studied in the classroom and experience the influences. It can also be used in research purposes. • Communication between students to manage risk and realise the concept of information sharing.

Ayman Tobail (ayman.tobail@dit.ie) John Crowe (john.crowe@dit.ie) Amr Arisha (amr.arisha@dit.ie) 3S Group, Dublin Institute of Technology (www.3sgroup.ie)


3S GROUP – SUSTAINABLE SMART SOLUTIONS FOR COMPLEX SYSTEMS

An Optimisation-based Framework for Complex Business Process: Healthcare Application 1. ABSTRACT

2. PROJECT MOTIVE

An optimization-based framework is developed to provide a decision support tool for healthcare managers who are facing major pressures due to rising demand, which is inflicted by growth of population, ageing and high expectations of service quality. Modelling and simulation are integrated with balanced scorecard to help in continual improvement of processes. Multi-criteria decision analysis was used to select key performance measures that align with decision makers preferences and stakeholders’ expectations. Integrating optimization within the framework helped managers to allocate resources in a more efficient way given the constraint of limited available resources. Due to the high level of uncertainty in care service demand, using the proposed integrated framework allows decision makers to find optimum staff schedules that in return improve emergency department performance. Communicating the importance of optimum scheduling has encouraged managers to implement the framework in the emergency department within the hospital partner. Results seem to be promising.

4. CASE STUDY

Healthcare Challenges:

Project Aims:

Global economic downturn is imposing more fund cuts

Efficient processes

Growing costs of medical services and treatments

Utilized resources

System dynamics and uncertainties

Increasing patient’s expectation and demand

Diversity of staff and stakeholders

1.

A leading Irish University Hospital in Dublin that is characterized by:

 

5. REAL-TIME STRATEGIES

 570-bed Hospital

Strategy 1

• Medical Staff

Increasing clinical assessors (one doctor shift at night)

Effective operations and safety

 55,000 patients annually

Strategy2

• Physical Capacity Expansion

Increasing clinical assessment capacity (extra 6 trolley cubicles)

Less waiting time

 99% occupancy

Patient-focused

Strategy3

• Access Block (i.e. Zero Tolerance)

Absolute compliance with the national 6 –hour admission target for ED boarders

Service equity

 17% leave without being seen

2.

 21.3 hrs from registration to admission

Emergency Department Physical Layout and Main Care Areas Hospital Admission

58.0%

100

Feb

Mar

Apr May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov Dec

Annual Patient Arrival for the Emergency Department

Immediate Very Urgent

Urgent

Standard Non-Urgent

Distribution of Patients Triage Category

M5 77 M4 66

Ambulance Patients

0

Waiting Room

X-Ray

CT Room

M3

M2

22

25 %

15 % 5%

IMM VURG URG STD

11

Walk-in Patients

15 %

10 % 15 %

Nursing Station

ED Major Assessment Area 4B 4B

35 % 65 % 85 %

Registration Office

M1

IMM VURG URG STD

IMM VURG URG STD

100 % 100 % 75 % 30 %

40 %

IMM 95 % VURG 95 % URG 95 % STD

REFERRER TO ADMISSION

35 % 20

AWAITING ADMISSION IMM VURG URG

15 %

Patient Arrival

85 % 90 % 90 %

10 % 15 %

35 %

95%

10 %

65 % 95 %

83%

73%

62%

58% 42%

27%

17%

88

Very Urgent

Urgent

Standard

-2

-1

45 % 75 %

-39%

0

-48%

35 %

Sensitivity Analysis

90 %

Ambulance/ Trolley

90 % 20 %

Example: Routing Steps of Patients with Respiratory Problems

Direct Observations

Site Visit

Data Analysis

Patient

Interviews (Staff)

Staff Scheduling: A Hybrid Genetic Algorithm with Artificial Immune System Business Process Modelling

Interviews (Managers)

Process Mapping of the Emergency Department Processes using IDEF-0

A0

Patient Transfer

NODE: A0

0

Base Lin

Registration A2

Initial Population

2.

Triage Category

A3

Patient

Patient Patient Allocation A4

Simulation

A5

Balanced Scorecard (BSC)

Optimization

A31

Focus Groups

Cubicles NODE: A0

Patient Transfer

Selection

Interviews (Managers)

Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA)

NO.:

A34 Medical Staff Medical Equipments/ Computer Terminals Bed/Trolleys/Seats Cubicles NODE: A3

DOCTOR 1

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

DOCTOR 3

11

DOCTOR 4

10

12

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

DOCTOR 5

9

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

DOCTOR 6

8

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

DOCTOR 7

7

5

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

4

5

6

DOCTOR 8

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

4

5

DOCTOR 9

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

4

DOCTOR 10

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

1

2

3

DOCTOR 11

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

1

2

DOCTOR 12

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

1

W EEK 1 Patient Record Update

Patient

X

D2 D2 D2 D2

DOCTOR 2

N

N

DOCTOR 3

D2

D2 D2 D2 D2

DOCTOR 4

D1

D1 D1

DOCTOR 6

E2

E2 E2

DOCTOR 7

E2

E2 E2 E2

DOCTOR 8

D4

D4

DOCTOR 9

D2

D2 D2 D2 D2

DOCTOR 11

N

N

DOCTOR 12

E1

E1 E1 E1 E1

N

NO.: 3

Patient Arrival

141

Finite Solution Space Branch & Bound

Nonlinear Programming

ε-optimal

Gradient-Based

Direct Search Methods

Patient Throughput

Nonlinear Objective Function /Constraints

Likelihood Ratio Estimator (LR)

Continuous Decision Variables

Perturbation Analysis (PA) Response Surface Methodology (RSM)

Meta-ModelBased

Mathematical Model

System Model

Optimisation Techniques

Finite Difference Estimation

Infinite Solution Space

Integer & Mixed Decision Variables

Layout Efficiency

ED Performance ED Productivity

Kriging Artificial Neural Network (ANN)

Multiple Comparison Procedures (MCP) Statistical Methods

Ordinal Optimisation (OO)

Finite Solution Space

Discrete Decision Variables

Ranking & Selection (R & S) Simulated Annealing (SA) Random Search/ Meta-Heuristics

Tabu Search (TS) Evolutionary Algorithms (EAs)

Mixed/Qualitative Decision Variables

Resource Utilisation Simulation Model

60

70

Capacity Expansion

N

N

OFF

OFF

OFF

N

N

N

D1 D1 D1 E2 E2

OFF

N

N

OFF

D4 D4

OFF

N

N

OFF

OFF

E1 E1 E1 E1 E1

N

OFF

OFF

N

N

N

N

N

N

D2 D2 D2 D2 N

N

N

N

D1 D1 D2 D2 D2 D2 D2 E2 E2

OFF

OFF

OFF N

N

80

90

100

Zero-Tolerance

N

OFF

E1 E1 E1 E1 E1

OFF

OFF

N

D4 D4

OFF

OFF

N

N

N

N

100

N

D2 D2 D2 D2 N

N

N

N

D1 D1 D2 D2 D2 D2 D2 E2 E2

OFF

OFF

OFF

N

N N

OFF

E1 E1 E1 E1 E1

N

OFF

OFF

OFF

D4 D4

OFF

N

N

N

N

N

N

N

N

N

N

N OFF

D2 D2 D2 D2

OFF N

OFF

D1 D1 D2 D2 D2 D2 D2

OFF

D1 D1 D1

D1 D1

E2 E2

OFF

OFF OFF

E2 E2 E2 E2

OFF

D4 D4 D4 E2 E2 E2 E2

D2 D2 D2 D2 D2

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

E2 E2 E2 E2

D4 D4 D4 E2 E2 E2 E2

OFF

D2 D2 D2 D2 D2

OFF N

W EEK 5

OFF

D1 D1 D1

D2 D2 D2 D2 D2 N

W EEK 4 N

OFF

E2 E2 E2 E2

OFF N

N

N

D4 D4 D4 E2 E2 E2 E2

D2 D2 D2 D2 D2 N

N

D1 D1 D1

OFF

D4 D4 D4 E2 E2 E2 E2 OFF

W EEK 3 OFF

OFF

E2 E2 E2 E2

OFF N

N

D2 D2 D2 D2

D1 D1 D2 D2 D2 D2 D2

OFF

OFF

E1 E1 E1 E1 E1

OFF

D4 D4

OFF

E2 E2

OFF

E2

D4 D4 D4

KPI’s

Base Line

Optimal schedule

177.43

75.68

57%

113 89

Avg. A. W.T. (mins)

50

ALOS Discharged Patients (hrs)

8.95

7.13

20%

% Patients Treated

83%

92%

11%

90

70

70 50

HSE and EMP Performance Targets

Patient

Cutting Plane

Linear Objective Function /Constraints

Infinite Solution Space

50

Additional Staff

88 90

Monday

Avg. Doctor Distance Avg. Nurse Distance

Patient Throughput Cycle Time Patient Registration

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Using the ED simulation model has resulted in directing the adaptive search capabilities of the GA/CSA algorithm towards obtaining optimal staff working stretches that meet the patient demand which is the highest around working days, whereas the demand is at its lowest levels around the weekends

Patient Satisfaction

Layout Efficiency

Internal ED Business Processes

Integer/Mixed Integer Programming

Interior Point

40

Total Physician Hours

114

A Balanced Scorecard for the Emergency Department

ED Productivity

Avg. Waiting Time

Avg. Service Time

Triage

Registration

Patient : Doctor Ratio

Triage

Doctor

Diagnosis

Diagnostics

Staff

Assets

Doctor

CPR

Nurse

ACU

Admin

Majors

LoS Admitted

Discharge

% of Patients Admitted to Hospital

LoS Discharged

Admission

%Patients Left Without Treatment

Diagnosis % Patient Treated Triage

Waleed Abo Hamad (waleed.abohamad@dit.ie) & Amr Arisha (amr.arisha@dit.ie)

Upgrading Staff skills

The average patient waiting time was reduced by 57% due to the new schedule while the percentage of treated patients has approached 92% converging on the HSE 6-hours target

Resource Utilisation

7. CONCLUSION

Patient : Nurse Ratio

Learning & Growth

Linear Programming

Continuous Decision Variables

30

135 119

Community Perspective

Mathematical Programming

Simplex Method

Avg. Doctor Distance Avg. Nurse Distance Avg. Registration C.T. Avg. Triage C.T. Avg. Diagnosis C.T. Avg. LoS for Discharged Patients Avg. LoS for Admitted Patients Avg. Triage W.T. Avg. Doctor W.T. Avg. Diagnostics W.T. Avg. Discharge W.T. Avg. Admission W.T. Avg. Registration S.T. Avg. Diagnosis S.T. Avg. Triage S.T. Patient : Doctor Ratio Patient : Nurse Ratio % Patients Treated % of Patients Admitted to Hospital %Patients Left Without Treatment Doctor Utilisation Nurse Utilisation Admin Utilisation CPR Utilisation Majors Utilisation ACU Utilisation

N

OFF

OFF

DOCTOR 10

Value Tree of the Emergency Department Performance Measures

20

Staff Utilisation

W EEK 2

DOCTOR 1

DOCTOR 5

Triage Process

10

Base Lin

Patient Allocation A33

YES

ED Processes

Patient Details Patient

0

Optimal Staff schedules

Patient Details

A32

12

Zero-Tolerance

Ward/ Hospital Capacity

Bed/Trolleys/Seats

Converged?

Capacity Expansion

A6

Medical Equipments

Blood Test

Additional Staff

Patient Assessment & Patient Treatment

Medical Staff

Patient

10

w1 w2 w3 w4 w5 w6 w7 w8 w9 w10 w11 w12

Administrative Staff

Patient Information Patient Details

8

The performance of the current ED will deteriorate due to overutilization of staff because they have reached their burnout level (85% utilization). Staff burnout can be better mitigated by increasing the staffing level on the ED than expanding the physical capacity of the ED which does not lower the work load on an individual staff member

Mode of Arrival

Patient

Mutation

6

Patient Information

Patient Arrival

Triage

Patient

4

1 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0

NO.:

Patient

Intial Diagnosis and Assessment

2

Due to the increase of the ALOS above 6-hrs, the performance of the current ED deteriorated at all levels, while adding more staff and increasing the capacity of the ED was needed at this stage. However, enforcing the 6-hrs target (i.e., zerotolerance scenario) outperformed these more expensive scenarios (i.e., Capacity expansion and Additional staff)

Average LoS (hrs)

ED Processes

A1

Replacement

1 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1

Constraints

Genetic Algorithm

Optimization Techniques Map (OTM): A Selection Scheme

Resolving the access blockage can free valuable resources (e.g., doctors, nurses, and trolleys) consumed by patients waiting for hospital admission, which in turn reduced average LOS by 48%.

PATIENT DISCHARGE

20 %

OTM

-18%

35 %

Hospital Information System

Optimal/Near Optimal Solution(s)

-4%

-15%

D-ALOS

ED Processes

NO

-3

-4

-5

65 %

Inter-arrival Time for ‘Urgent’ Patient Group

Crossover

-15

-15

Patient Information

Fitness Computation

Avg. LOS

Zero-Tolerance

-6

40 %

Increasing Staff

-5%

The impact of increasing the clinical assessment capacity was negligible (15% decrease in Avg. waiting time)) compared to the -10 synchronisation of patient flow through the hospital (i.e., enforcing the maximum boarding time from emergency department to hospital beds).

5%

RAT RAT 1 2

Capacity Expansion

Avg. Waiting Time

-5

-10

ED Performance

Patients Mode of Arrival

Increasing medical staffing at busy periods might seem intuitively beneficial to overall patient LOS. However, this potentially expensive change has limited impact on ED boarding time with a reduction in length of stay (LOS) for patients by average of 4%.

0

-5

5%

Family Room

Non-Urgent

Zero-Tolerance

Capacity Expansion

85 %

Isolation Room 2

5%

Immediate

Resuscitation Area

Isolation Room 1

38%

100 % 5%

4A 4A

Base Line

Increasing Staff

10 %

5B 5B

Scenario Results

0

STD

15 %

M6

-1

10 %

5A 5A

M7

-2

50 %

5% 5%

5%

Triage Room 1

M9 M10

0.5%

1 Jan

33

-3

-4

-5

-6

50 %

A-ALOS

1.1%

50 %

REFERRER TO OPINION

10 % 10 %

VURG URG

PATIENT ADMITTED TO HOSPITAL

16.5%

10

Psychiatric Assessmen t Room

Respiratory

Triage Room 2

URG SEEN STD BY ANP

SEEN BY DOCTOR

23.9%

Confidence Regions for Scenarios

Walk in Patient Ambulatory Care

Scenario Analysis

ED Performance

2898 2782 3298 2995 3204 3151 2999 3100 2955 2985 2884 2919

1.

Main Processes and Patient Routing within the Emergency Department

TRIAGE

Analysis of Emergency Department Historical Data

1000

Staff Scheduling

6. RESULTS & ANALYSIS

3. INTEGRATED FRAMEWORK 10000

Real-time Strategies

Staff Satisfaction

The provision of an integrated optimisation-based decision support framework that is applicable in managing complex healthcare business process.

Guidance on integration points between a variety of methods and techniques in a harmonised, yet effective and practical way.

The integrated framework considers the healthcare problems in its full complexity before a solution can be found.

Helping healthcare managers to foresee the consequences of a wide range of potential solutions and predict the impact of the changes.

The use of the integrated framework in hospitals has a significant benefit in ensuring the quality of implementation of strategies and supporting decision makers. It also provides a safer, less disruptive and potentially less expensive tool than instigating de novo untested ineffectual strategies.

The findings and recommendations of the framework are currently widely implemented by the partner hospital where other hospital units are to be investigated and modeled.

The framework is also used in collaboration with the facility planners and project managers of the new extension of the hospital to test the efficiency of the proposed layouts and capacities.

3S Group, Dublin Institute of Technology (www.3sgroup.ie)

DTUA Research Showcase  

research

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you