Photonics - the science and technology of light - is a key digital technology that will radically change traditional industrial production. Photonic technologies are used to develop and bring to market new products in a wide range of applications such as health, digital infrastructure, manufacturing, security, space and defence, food, climate protection, mobility and energy. MATERIALS, the Institute of Surface Technologies and Photonics at JOANNEUM RESEARCH, is now a partner of PhotonHub Europe, a new pan-European centre for digital photonics innovation. MATERIALS in Weiz, supported by the Photonics Austria platform, is one of 53 European partners offering their expertise and infrastructure in the network. The project will start at the beginning of 2021 and has a total project volume of 19 million euros from the EU programme Horizon 2020.
Promoting local technologies and ensuring global competitiveness
PhotonHub Europe will help European small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to become competitive digital businesses. This will be achieved through cooperation between local photonics hubs, such as Photonics Austria, from the "lighthouse regions" where photonics is already well established. The network will develop and disseminate best practice models for SME innovation support. The faster introduction of photon-based technologies is thus made possible, thereby strengthening the competitiveness of local companies. The aim is also to develop the technology at local level and thus maintain local supply chains. By 2025, more than 1,000 new high-tech jobs will be created in the EU and almost €1 billion of new revenue and risk capital will be directly generated.
In order to accelerate the adoption and deployment of photonics technologies by European industry, a Photonics Innovation Centre will be established, bringing together under one roof all the world-class photonics technologies, infrastructure, expertise and experience of 53 top competence centres across Europe: a one-stop-shop solution with open access for all companies across Europe. The entire value chain is covered, from product concept in the early stages to pilot production and market launch.
MATERIALS Institute Director Paul Hartmann is looking forward to new opportunities:
"With the new one-stop-shop PhotonHub Europe, a structure is being created for the first time that gives small and medium-sized companies comprehensive access to the pan-European range of technologies relating to the future-oriented topic of photonics. Even companies from areas far removed from photonics have the opportunity to have innovative photonics solutions implemented for them. I am sure that this is an ideal offer for many technologically oriented commercial and industrial companies in segments such as lighting technology, sensor technology, life science, laser technology or optical communication technologies".
More information: https://www.photonhub.eu/.
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