MDH-researcher appointed Future Research Leader

Dec 17, 2010 | Research/Cooperation

The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research has awarded the prestigious individual grant for Future Research Leaders to Mälardalen University researcher Thomas Nolte, 33. The prize money of 10 million kronor gives him the opportunity of strengthening his research group in embedded computer systems, at the same time as the award clearly puts Mälardalen University on both the national and international map of excellent research.

The Future Research Leaders grant is appointed only every three years and during the total of four rounds in which the appointments have been made so far, Thomas Nolte from Mälardalen University is the first one from a university college to be awarded the distinction.

-I was really pleasantly surprised! It feels a great honour, and I believe that its being bestowed on me can open up doors for other competent colleagues over the whole of Mälardalen University to gain prestigious grants, says Thomas Nolte.

Of 160 young researchers (most of them being from for example Karolinska Institutet, Uppsala and Lund Universities) who had applied for the Future Research Leaders programme, a good 60 went on to be examined by an international committee of experts. Following upon that were interviews with recruiters, leadership developers and research leaders before 18 researchers were finally selected. These 18 are judged to have special qualifications for becoming leading researchers, and their research is of the highest international class, of importance to the development of Sweden’s competitive power.

Focuses on real-time systems

Västerås-born Thomas Nolte, from the beginning a student of Computer Science at Mälardalen University, is active today in the University’s research profile Mälardalen Real-Time Research Centre, MRTC. He leads a research group of his own with a focus on embedded computer systems, which are to be found in products such as mobile phones, cars and aeroplanes.

- We are working on predicting the behaviour of these systems, so that we know if they are going to function correctly and how much time is required to perform various functions. A car, for example, contains up to 100 different computers, and in the case of a car accident it’s important that we have been able in advance to ensure that the airbag is not only going to be released but also at exactly the right moment, Thomas tells us.

With the ten million that he is now getting from the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research for a period of five years, he is going to employ more doctoral students in his research group, and continue to produce high quality research for the benefit of society. The appointment of Future Research Leader also means access to an entirely new network with other top researchers, along with a leadership training course.

- My aim is to become an established leader of a successful research centre within a few years. I want to create a secure and supportive research environment in which every individual is encouraged to specialise in his or her sphere of interest, and where we together will become a winning team, says Thomas Nolte.

Read more about Mälardalen Real-Time Research Centre