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2016 News Archive

Bounce Beacon wins University College Dublin IoT Commercialisation Award

Tuesday, 12 April, 2016 


An idea being developed by a postdoctoral research fellow and his colleagues to enable the precise positioning of moving vehicles more efficiently, has won a University College Dublin (UCD) internet-of-things (IoT) commercialisation award.

Information on the exact position of moving vehicles is key for the delivery of on-board specialised automotive services such as lane pricing and prioritisation, smart routing, hazard warning and to enable autonomous driving.

Currently Global Navigation Satellite Systems, such as GPS, only guarantee levels of accuracy to within metres. Accuracy strongly depends on challenging issues such as access to sufficient and reliable contextual information, or anchor nodes, (e.g. from satellites and nearby vehicles) which is dynamic in nature and affected by physical obstacles.

Stationary vehicles have several features which make them suitable as anchor nodes. Mostly, they are typically stationary for long periods of time, have wide geographical distribution and are generally close to moving vehicles. Research findings indicate that the use of these vehicles as anchor nodes can greatly increase the accuracy of absolute localisation and therefore could assist with the delivery of location-based services to moving vehicles in a more efficient manner.

An early-stage business idea, initially called Bounce Beacon, to commercialise such research findings, was the overall winner of the 2016 UCD IoT Innovation Sprint Programme. This business idea is being developed by Dr Rodrigo Ordónez-Hurtado, Professor Robert Shorten and University of Pisa researcher Dr Emanuele Crisortomi.

Rodrigo, originally from Colombia, is currently a postdoctoral research fellow in Professor Shorten’s research group in the UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

The work was initially developed, in part, as part of the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Project ‘Green Transportation Networks’ and the EU FP7-funded Project TEAM (Tomorrow’s Elastic Adaptive Mobility), and has been further developed at UCD.

The UCD Innovation Sprint Programme is a 1-day initiative designed and delivered by UCD’s technology transfer and enterprise development teams at NovaUCD.

Each 1-day programme aims to encourage the development of commercial outputs arising from specific research areas, IoT in this current programme, taking place at UCD by engaging with researchers at an earlier stage in the commercialisation process.

A total of33 researchers with 27 business ideas from across the University have taken part in the six 1-day Programmes delivered to date at UCD. In addition to IoT, programmes held so far have focused on business opportunities arising from research taking place in; Agri-Food; CleanWeb; Data Science, Engineering and Life Science.

Speaking at NovaUCD Brendan Cremen, UCD Director of Enterprise and Commercialisation said, “I would like to congratulate Dr Rodrigo Ordónez-Hurtado on winning the 2016 UCD IoT Innovation Sprint Award.”

“Our objective with the Innovation Sprint Programmes is to engage with UCD researchers at an earlier stage in the commercialisation process, in an exciting and fun environment, and to use internal and external experts to assist them in understanding and defining more clearly the commercial potential of the outputs emerging from their research activities.”

Dr Rodrigo Ordónez-Hurtado said, “I am delighted to have won the 2016 UCD IoT Innovation Sprint Award, and especially to have interacted directly with experts and received valuable feedback from a perspective beyond the pure academic viewpoint, to bring our concept to the next stage of development.”

During the 1-day 2016 UCD IoT Innovation Sprint Programme a number of internal and external technology and business professionals collaborated with the UCD researchers to explore the commercial potential of transforming their research ideas into early-stage IoT business ideas.

At the end of the programme the winner was presented with a €500 professional service prize fund to assist him to further develop the business idea, as it was judged, following pitches to a panel to have the most commercial potential.

The 2016 UCD IoT Innovation Sprint Programme, which took place at NovaUCD, involved a total of 4 early-stage IoT business ideas.

The members of the judging panel for this Programme were Rory Caren, IBM Ecosystem Developer Relations Manager; Julie Spillane, Director of Accenture’s Centre for Innovation in Dublin and Brendan Cremen, Director of Enterprise and Commercialisation, UCD.