Tampere University of Technology

www.tut.fi
Tampere, Finland

Tampere University of Technology ) is Finland's second-largest university in engineering science. The university is located in Hervanta, a suburb of Tampere.The university's statutory duty is to pursue research and give the highest education in its field. The research, conducted by some 1,800 staff and faculty members, mostly focuses on applied science and often has close ties to many different companies . Located next to the university campus is a Technology Centre Hermia, including a large Nokia research facility. The yearly budget of the university is some 147 million euros. TUT is one of the only two Finnish universities which operate as foundation. Close to 50% of its budget is external funding. Wikipedia.

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News Article | May 4, 2017
Site: www.prnewswire.com

The work was carried out in to meet the need of growing market demands for solutions to improve the safety of lone workers. In some countries, such systems are required also by unions or legislation. Furthermore, many current lone worker solutions are user driven requiring the user to interact with the system which can sometimes frustrate the end-user and may leave room for human error. Mr Juha Eskelin, the EIT Digital Task leader and Senior Manager at Bittium said: "Our task, which we called 'Vertical Application in Protective Monitoring,' focused on processing data from the wearable sensor passively, i.e. without any user interaction, and to be able to produce actionable recommendations or enable sensors based on location. Recommendations and alerts can be triggered based on a number of variables including location, acceleration, temperature or devices coming on or going off-line." "We wanted to look this from the perspective of a passive application - let the application automate the actions on behalf of the user and thus make the life for example of a community care worker a bit easier. Also, as a side effect, we would expect productivity to increase as well, as through automation the worker can meet more patients during a given day." The concepts, protocols and data formats used in the protective monitoring application were developed through an EIT Digital High Impact Initiative known as Advanced Connectivity Platform for Vertical Segments (ACTIVE). Its focus is to develop an advanced connectivity Internet-of-Things (IoT) platform adoptable in various vertical segments. The platform will deliver, among other things, services for secure management, interaction and communication on IoT platforms. "A protective monitoring application fits very well with the ACTIVE initiative. If you try to decapsulate the actual vertical application, many of the IoT applications look very similar: sending sensor data, to or via a gateway to be processed either at the edge or at the cloud. Indeed, that is the idea of the ACTIVE as well: to remove the need to build each and every IoT application from scratch and allow to use the platform to reduce the time to market for new IoT applications. The application has verified that ACTIVE can indeed serve verticals regardless of the industry segment." To produce the new application EIT Digital partners Finnish Bittium and Engineering from Italy worked together to understand the concepts and commonalities in Body Area Networks (BAN), Personal Area Networks (PAN) and wearable integration.The task also used the deliverables of an another EIT Digital Innovation Activity, Fit to Perform, as a reference for professional/health oriented wearable platforms. In addition, EIT Digital partners Ericsson (Finland) and Finnish Tampere University of Technology have contributed to extending the device management to wearable devices and to facilitate semantic interoperability of sensor data across different vendors' devices. "The work on vertical application in protective monitoring will certainly continue. Thanks to ACTIVE and collaboration with the other partners, it is now faster and easier to integrate the application with other systems. We will look into supporting new use cases and making certain functionalities more flexible and configurable as well as incorporating feedback and ideas from customers and developers." EIT Digital Innovation Activities deliver new products or services, create startups and spinoffs to commercialise outputs from projects, and encourage the transfer of technologies for market entry. Active and is one of the 13 Innovation Activities of the Digital Infrastructure Action Line of EIT Digital for 2017. The Digital Infrastructure Action Line focuses on enabling digital transformation by providing secure, robust, responsive, and intelligent communications and computation facilities for the markets. *The Bittium SafeMove Zone solution was announced at the Hannover Messe on 24 April, 2017. EIT Digital is a leading European open innovation organisation that brings together a partnership of over 130 top European corporations, SMEs, start-ups, universities and research institutes. EIT Digital invests in strategic areas to accelerate market uptake of research-based digital technologies and to bring entrepreneurial talent and leadership to Europe. EIT Digital is a Knowledge and Innovation Community of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). EIT Digital headquarters are in Brussels with co-location centres in Berlin, Budapest, Eindhoven, Helsinki, London, Madrid, Paris, Stockholm, Trento and a hub in Silicon Valley.


News Article | May 4, 2017
Site: www.prnewswire.co.uk

The work was carried out in to meet the need of growing market demands for solutions to improve the safety of lone workers. In some countries, such systems are required also by unions or legislation. Furthermore, many current lone worker solutions are user driven requiring the user to interact with the system which can sometimes frustrate the end-user and may leave room for human error. Mr Juha Eskelin, the EIT Digital Task leader and Senior Manager at Bittium said: "Our task, which we called 'Vertical Application in Protective Monitoring,' focused on processing data from the wearable sensor passively, i.e. without any user interaction, and to be able to produce actionable recommendations or enable sensors based on location. Recommendations and alerts can be triggered based on a number of variables including location, acceleration, temperature or devices coming on or going off-line." "We wanted to look this from the perspective of a passive application - let the application automate the actions on behalf of the user and thus make the life for example of a community care worker a bit easier. Also, as a side effect, we would expect productivity to increase as well, as through automation the worker can meet more patients during a given day." The concepts, protocols and data formats used in the protective monitoring application were developed through an EIT Digital High Impact Initiative known as Advanced Connectivity Platform for Vertical Segments (ACTIVE). Its focus is to develop an advanced connectivity Internet-of-Things (IoT) platform adoptable in various vertical segments. The platform will deliver, among other things, services for secure management, interaction and communication on IoT platforms. "A protective monitoring application fits very well with the ACTIVE initiative. If you try to decapsulate the actual vertical application, many of the IoT applications look very similar: sending sensor data, to or via a gateway to be processed either at the edge or at the cloud. Indeed, that is the idea of the ACTIVE as well: to remove the need to build each and every IoT application from scratch and allow to use the platform to reduce the time to market for new IoT applications. The application has verified that ACTIVE can indeed serve verticals regardless of the industry segment." To produce the new application EIT Digital partners Finnish Bittium and Engineering from Italy worked together to understand the concepts and commonalities in Body Area Networks (BAN), Personal Area Networks (PAN) and wearable integration.The task also used the deliverables of an another EIT Digital Innovation Activity, Fit to Perform, as a reference for professional/health oriented wearable platforms. In addition, EIT Digital partners Ericsson (Finland) and Finnish Tampere University of Technology have contributed to extending the device management to wearable devices and to facilitate semantic interoperability of sensor data across different vendors' devices. "The work on vertical application in protective monitoring will certainly continue. Thanks to ACTIVE and collaboration with the other partners, it is now faster and easier to integrate the application with other systems. We will look into supporting new use cases and making certain functionalities more flexible and configurable as well as incorporating feedback and ideas from customers and developers." EIT Digital Innovation Activities deliver new products or services, create startups and spinoffs to commercialise outputs from projects, and encourage the transfer of technologies for market entry. Active and is one of the 13 Innovation Activities of the Digital Infrastructure Action Line of EIT Digital for 2017. The Digital Infrastructure Action Line focuses on enabling digital transformation by providing secure, robust, responsive, and intelligent communications and computation facilities for the markets. *The Bittium SafeMove Zone solution was announced at the Hannover Messe on 24 April, 2017. EIT Digital is a leading European open innovation organisation that brings together a partnership of over 130 top European corporations, SMEs, start-ups, universities and research institutes. EIT Digital invests in strategic areas to accelerate market uptake of research-based digital technologies and to bring entrepreneurial talent and leadership to Europe. EIT Digital is a Knowledge and Innovation Community of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). EIT Digital headquarters are in Brussels with co-location centres in Berlin, Budapest, Eindhoven, Helsinki, London, Madrid, Paris, Stockholm, Trento and a hub in Silicon Valley.


News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Available to industry for the first time: New computation tools enable much faster and cheaper product development Faster, more accurate and agile computation tools and methods have been developed through the SEMTEC project, led by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. This will enable the elimination of the expensive and time-consuming prototype phase in the electromechanical industry. Finnish industry will gain a competitive advantage due to the faster product development of electrical motors, generators and transformers, which will enter the markets at lower cost. The project will also result in quieter and more energy-efficient machines. The key result of the SEMTEC project is new computation methods, which can now be exploited by industry for the first time, using companies' own tools. The project produced innovative and accurate methods to control vibrations, dampen noise and improve the energy efficiency of devices. Beneficiaries of the results include the electromechanical industry in particular, which manufactures electric motors, generators and transformers. In addition, cooperation between research and industry will increase when all results are available to everyone via the open-source Elmer software. "Finnish industry will gain a competitive advantage from leaner design processes. Electromechanical devices are seldom mass-produced -- each product unit tends to be separately designed. Accelerating product development will therefore markedly shorten delivery times and create a major competitive edge," says project manager Janne Keränen of VTT. For example, the noise generated by lifts and transformers will be reduced. This will enable the reducing of disturbing and tiresome noise in homes and workplaces. "SEMTEC has led to close and symbiotic cooperation between industrial enterprises, research institutes and universities. Open source code means that new models developed by researchers can be tested immediately in the industry's own design systems. The project has enabled the productisation of new, world-class modelling toolset, which we have already been using to win major deals," says Eelis Takala, Lead Research Specialist at Trafotek. As computing power grows and the use of open source software increases, electromagnetic computation is reaching a turning point. Old software is seldom suitable for the world of parallel computing. The Elmer tool, an open-source finite element method (FEM) software developed by CSC, was used in the project. Elmer features numerically efficient parallel computing and advanced coupling of multiple phenomena. "Only genuine cooperation enabled the development of software for a new application area so quickly. The importance of parallel computing will continue to grow as number of computational cores in CPUs increases. This leads us to believe that long and fruitful cooperation lies ahead," says Peter Råback of CSC, Product Manager of the Elmer software. The project began in February 2015 and will end in May 2017. The following companies are participants: ABB Oy, Kone Corporation, Konecranes Finland Corporation, Trafotek Oy, Sulzer Pumps Finland Oy, Ingersoll-Rand Finland Oy and CSC - IT Center for Science (CSC). The research organisations involved were VTT, Aalto University, Lappeenranta University of Technology and Tampere University of Technology. The SEMTEC project was funded by Tekes and the companies and research institutes participating in the project. SEMTEC final, open seminar will be held in Aalto University on Tuesday 23 May 2017. For further details on the project, go to http://www. . More information about the project: VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd is the leading research and technology company in the Nordic countries. We use our research and knowledge to provide expert services for our domestic and international customers and partners, and for both private and public sectors. We use 4,000,000 hours of brainpower a year to develop new technological solutions. VTT in social media: Twitter @VTTFinland, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram and Periscope.


News Article | May 24, 2017
Site: www.sciencenewsdaily.org

The problem with tiny robots, if there can really be said to be one, is that you can’t put enough stuff on them. Cameras and motors don’t shrink down very well, meaning if you want your robot to grab something, you’d better come up with a new way to see it and hold onto it. And that’s just what Finnish researchers have done with this bio-inspired, super-small gripper! Read More Less than a centimetre in size, the soft robotic device can detect items based on how they reflect light and grasp them with impressive force This ultra-twee soft robotic gripper was inspired by Venus flytraps  The problem with tiny robots, if there can really be said to be one, is that you can’t put enough stuff on them. Cameras and motors don’t shrink down very well, meaning if ... The artificial Venus flytrap could give soft robots a way to grasp and release objects autonomously, according to scientists. This micro-robot mimics the ingenious grasp of a Venus flytrap Science Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Researchers created an artificial flytrap that's driven by light. Read on. Artificial 'Venus flytrap' can sense and pick up things Scientists from Tampere University of Technology, in Finland, have developed a soft, gripping device (pictured) that can sense and pick up objects, mimicking the ferocious Venus flytrap plant. ...


News Article | May 29, 2017
Site: cen.acs.org

Pity the poor insect that wanders onto a Venus flytrap. Just a couple false steps into the carnivorous plant’s trigger hairs, and the leaves snap shut, dooming the bug. Inspired by the Venus flytrap’s ability to distinguish between insects and other stray bits of matter, Tampere University of Technology scientists Arri Priimagi, Hao Zeng, and Owies M. Wani have created a soft robot that acts with the same sort of autonomy. Their optical flytrap distinguishes between objects that reflect or scatter light and those that do not before grabbing the reflective ones. “It’s very difficult in soft robotics to develop systems that make decisions by themselves,” says Priimagi, who led the research team. Most soft robots, he says, don’t react to their environment but instead require some sort of external activation. His team’s solution was to incorporate an optical fiber into a liquid crystalline elastomer. When the light strikes a reflective object, it reflects back onto the liquid crystalline elastomer, triggering a photochemical isomerization in the elastomer’s azobenzene components. The isomerization events release heat, causing the liquid crystals to lose their orientation and bend the elastomer, which makes the device grip the reflective object in as little as 200 microseconds (Nat. Commun. 2017, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15546). Jian Chen, an expert in soft robotics at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, says Priimagi and coworkers’ use of an optical feedback loop to make their soft robot autonomous is creative. “This work represents very significant progress in the field of soft robotics,” Chen says. Priimagi explains that the optical flytrap was originally developed out of scientific curiosity. But the device might find use in quality control during microfabrication, gripping and removing tiny objects that don’t reflect light as they should. The optical flytrap can currently clamp down on objects hundreds of times as heavy as the elastomer, but Priimagi would like to boost that by an order of magnitude. He’d also like to create grippers that distinguish between differently colored objects and ones that snap shut as quickly as Venus flytraps—about twice as fast as the current optical flytrap.


Flash Physics is our daily pick of the latest need-to-know developments from the global physics community selected by Physics World's team of editors and reporters A Venus flytrap's autonomous insect-catching ability has been replicated by a tiny soft robot. To create the device, Arri Priimägi and team from Tampere University of Technology in Finland attached a strip of light-responsive liquid-crystal elastomer to the tip of an optical fibre. Mimicking the Venus flytrap's head, the strip of elastomer is about 10 mm long, 1 mm wide and 20 μm thick. It contains layers of ordered molecules that have a different orientation in each layer – those in the "insect-facing" layer are horizontal while those on the opposite side are vertical. The molecules in between are at an intermediate angle. When light is shone on the elastomer, the molecular alignment becomes random. This causes the insect-facing layer to contract and the other side to expand – in other words, the strip of elastomer bends like a flytrap closing. Usually a light-responsive elastomer requires external illumination, but by attaching the strip to an optical fibre, Priimägi and colleagues integrated a light source. Light shone through the optical fibre and elastomer creates a cone of illumination. When an object such as an insect enters this field of view, light is reflected back in the direction of the elastomer. This thereby triggers the elastomer to bend and close around the object. To release the object, the light is simply turned off. The autonomous device, presented in Nature Communications, could be used for intelligent micro-robotics as well as handling delicate small objects. Huge doughnut-shaped objects made from vapourized rock could be orbiting stars other than the Sun. That is the conclusion of Simon Lock of Harvard University and Sarah Stewart at the University of California, Davis, who have done calculations that suggest a new type of planetary object called a synestia could form when rocky planets collide with each other. Such an object would be about four times the diameter of Saturn's rings and would comprise a ring of rapidly rotating vapourized rock. It would resemble a doughnut, but instead of having a hole in the middle, a synestia would have a dense planet-like object at its centre. Lock and Stewart say a synestia would form when the debris from planetary collisions was both very hot and carrying large amounts of angular momentum. They also suggest that most planets could have been synestias early in their lifetimes. Small planets such as Earth would only spend a few hundred years in this phase before condensing into solid objects. However, larger or hotter objects such as gas-giant planets or even small stars could spend much longer times as synestias. Although synestias have not been observed, the calculations could encourage astronomers to look for huge doughnut-shaped objects alongside rock and gaseous exoplanets. The research is described in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. UK physics received £55m in 2014/2015 from the European Union (EU) according to a report by Technopolis Group – an independent policy research organization. Commissioned by the UK's four national academies – the Academy of Medical Sciences, the British Academy, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Society – the report looked at how reliant UK research is on EU funding. The EU's Seventh Framework Programme, which ran from 2007 to 2013, provided UK organizations with around €7bn and its successor – Horizon2020 – is providing around €1.1bn per year. This figure amounts to more than 10% of total UK government support for research and is around 5% of the UK's gross domestic expenditure on R&D. The report finds that UK universities received around £725m in research grants from EU government bodies in 2014/2015, of which £55m was received by both physics and chemistry while the biosciences got £90m. As the top 10 UK universities receive almost half the £725m funding, the report warns that this will be "difficult to replace" after the UK leaves the EU in 2019.


News Article | May 23, 2017
Site: cen.acs.org

Pity the poor insect that wanders onto a Venus flytrap. Just a couple false steps into the carnivorous plant’s trigger hairs, and its leaves snap shut, dooming the bug. Inspired by the Venus flytrap’s ability to distinguish between insects and other stray bits of matter, Tampere University of Technology scientists Arri Priimagi, Hao Zeng, and Owies M. Wani have created a soft robot that acts with the same sort of autonomy. Their optical flytrap distinguishes between objects that reflect or scatter light and those that do not before grabbing the reflective ones. “It’s very difficult in soft robotics to develop systems that make decisions by themselves,” says Priimagi, who led the research team. Most soft robots, he says, don’t react to their environment but instead require some sort of external activation. His team’s solution was to incorporate an optical fiber into a liquid crystalline elastomer. When the light strikes a reflective object, it reflects back onto the liquid crystalline elastomer, triggering a photochemical isomerization in the elastomer’s azobenzene components. The isomerization events release heat, causing the liquid crystals to lose their orientation and bend the elastomer, which makes the device grip the reflective object in as little as 200 microseconds (Nat. Commun. 2017, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15546). Jian Chen, an expert in soft robotics at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, says Priimagi and coworkers’ use of an optical feedback loop to make their soft robot autonomous is very creative. “This work represents very significant progress in the field of soft robotics,” Chen says. Priimagi explains that the optical flytrap was originally developed out of scientific curiosity. But the device might find use in quality control during microfabrication, gripping and removing tiny objects that don’t reflect light as they should. The optical flytrap can currently clamp down on objects hundreds of times heavier than the elastomer, but Priimagi would like to boost that by an order of magnitude. He’d also like to create grippers that distinguish between differently colored objects and ones that snap shut as quickly as Venus flytraps—about twice as fast as the current optical flytrap.


News Article | May 23, 2017
Site: www.newscientist.com

Snap! – and the robot’s got it. An artificial Venus flytrap can seize items hundreds of times heavier than itself when they come within reach. Using a combination of smart materials and optical fibres, the artificial flytrap can sense when something should be grabbed. The artificial flytrap is only a couple of millimetres wide and less than a centimetre tall. The leaves are made of a light-responsive material containing small molecular switches that change shape when hit by light. Its stem consists of an optical fibre that provides both power and vision. When the flytrap is open, light sent through the fibre exits past the leaves. Any object placed within the gripping range of the flytrap, reflects light back to the leaves, activating the molecular switches and causing them to shut. A normal Venus flytrap can react in around 100 milliseconds. The artificial one takes about double this. “Natural Venus flytraps are remarkable because they are fast snapping and can distinguish between objects, such as flies and dust,” says Arri Priimägi at Tampere University of Technology, Finland, who is one of the creators of the artificial flytrap. Inspired by nature, the artificial flytrap is also relatively fast snapping and can distinguish between objects that reflect light and those that don’t. “We believe that next we can make an artificial flytrap that distinguishes between colours as well,” says Priimägi. In the future, artificial flytraps could be used on a production line for tiny objects. Small electric components, for example, may be grabbed by the flytraps if the way they reflect light indicates a defect. “Through mimicking the Venus flytrap, this shows one way that soft robots could detect and respond to their environment using optical signals,” says Cheemeng Tan at the University of California, Davis. Looking at biology can provide inspiration for better robotics, he says.


Kauranen M.,Tampere University of Technology | Zayats A.V.,King's College London
Nature Photonics | Year: 2012

When light interacts with metal nanostructures, it can couple to free-electron excitations near the metal surface. The electromagnetic resonances associated with these surface plasmons depend on the details of the nanostructure, opening up opportunities for controlling light confinement on the nanoscale. The resulting strong electromagnetic fields allow weak nonlinear processes, which depend superlinearly on the local field, to be significantly enhanced. In addition to providing enhanced nonlinear effects with ultrafast response times, plasmonic nanostructures allow nonlinear optical components to be scaled down in size. In this Review, we discuss the principles of nonlinear plasmonic effects and present an overview of their main applications, including frequency conversion, switching and modulation of optical signals, and soliton effects. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

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