Major investment for energy and health technology with MDH and 15 companies in cooperation

Dec 18, 2012 | Research/Cooperation

Two new research profiles in energy and health technology at Mälardalen University (MDH) in cooperation with 15 companies are to develop health technology and renewable energy systems – two profiles which meet the demands in welfare both nationally and internationally. Altogether the Knowledge Foundation, MDH and the companies are investing 143 million SEK.

- Both these research profiles fit in well with how we want to work as a university – in close cooperation with industry and society – to generate research for value and benefit. These are important areas which will provide valuable knowledge for the future, says Karin Röding, Vice-Chancellor of MDH.

The project budget is 143 million SEK, of which the Knowledge Foundation has granted 72 million SEK, the cooperating companies have contributed 43 million, and MDH provide the rest of the funding. The two six-year profiles will start during the beginning of 2013. The profiles will strengthen cooperation in the Mälardalen region: these areas constitute national industries for the future which already have a strong base today in the region, and there is also a large commercial interest.

Energy for the future

The research profile will focus on meeting future changes in energy systems by increasing and streamlining the share of renewable energy in the form of biogas, solar energy and biowaste. The goal is to create an internationally competitive research environment with a focus on renewable energy, energy efficiency and minimisation of emissions.

Projects within the profile will deal with how renewable energy can be extracted from for example algae and bacteria, how the energy systems of the future are to be designed, and how the use of renewable energy in society at large can become as efficient as possible. The participating companies are ABB, VAFAB Miljö, Eskilstuna Energi och Miljö, Mälarenergi, YIT and Aspholmen.

- This funding secures our cooperation with MDH for many years ahead, which feels really good. It creates the conditions for joint projects in Energy for the Future, which is a great challenge for us. Examples of this are optimisation of biogas production and modelling of incineration processes. This collaboration also provides interesting projects and degree projects for students, enabling them to get out into working life, says Carina Färm, Business Unit Director, Water & Sewage, and Vice President of Eskilstuna Energi och Miljö [Energy and Environment).

Embedded sensor systems for health

The research profile will also be included in MDH’s already world-leading area of embedded systems. The background to this is increasing average life expectancy and the increased costs of health care, and the research profile has the purpose of preventing accidents and intercepting illnesses before they become too serious. This occurs through a new technology for monitoring, diagnosing and treatment by distance, which gives support to workers in hazardous environments and increases the opportunities for patients to continue living at home in spite of illnesses which require surveillance.

The participating companies are Addiva, Cambio, Delta, Giraff Technologies, Hök Instrument, JC Development, Medfield Diagnostics, Motion Control, and Quality Pharma, along with municipalities and county councils in the region.