Fine Gael Senator John Cummins has this morning welcomed the announcement that Waterford Institute of Technology is to receive funding for five projects across three of W.I.Ts research centres, under the Governments Capital Equipment Fund to assist them in buying world-leading research equipment that will serve the Research and Development (R&D) needs of Irish industry.
 
Senator Cummins said, “I am pleased that my colleague, Tanaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar TD has allocated funding across Higher Education Institutions for a broad range of initiatives and that WIT has been successful in securing funds for five key projects. I believe it is due recognition of the quality of research which is being undertaken at WIT.
 
The projects at WIT will include:
 
Telecommunications Software & Systems Group (TSSG) - Waterford IT
- Botscan
 
Pharmaceutical & Molecular Biotechnology Research Centre (PMBRC) - Waterford IT
- Near Infrared Spectrometer
 
South Eastern Applied Materials Research Centre (SEAM) - Waterford IT
- Micro x-ray Fluorescence Analysis System
 
South Eastern Applied Materials Research Centre (SEAM) - Waterford IT
- Coordinate Measurement Machine
 
South Eastern Applied Materials Research Centre (SEAM) - Waterford IT
- White Light Interferometer
 
W.IT is receiving a share of a €6m fund administered by Enterprise Ireland through the Technology Gateway and Technology Centre Programmes.
 
“This will provide SEAM, PMBrc and TSSG with access to critical, cutting-edge equipment that will allow them to engage in R&D activities, pilot manufacturing capability for new products and process development, enhance technology validation, testing capabilities and enhanced training potential for key industry staff on emerging technologies in collaboration with the technology gateways and technology centres across Ireland” said Senator Cummins.
 
He added  “I believe this is a welcome vote of confidence in W.I.T and its innovation hubs which are to the forefront on industry engagement and R&D. I would like to commend all the staff at the 3 centres for their hard work and dedication.”
 
The winners were selected through a rigorous evaluation process based on eligibility criteria for the call which included, but was not limited to, a strong track record of industry engagement, a significant industrial need for the new equipment, and space to service and maintain the equipment according to international standards. 
 
Announcing the funding, Tanaiste Leo Varadkar said, “this €6m Capital Equipment Fund will give 29 projects across the country access to world-class research equipment, helping them test new products and ways of doing things. We hope to see some exciting new ideas and breakthroughs as a result.
 
“Great things happen when companies collaborate with third level institutions. Recent data show that companies which collaborate with our universities have double the turnover of those that don’t. Third level institutions benefit too, by getting to work with creative, business-minded entrepreneurs, working on solutions to real life problems.