On Thursday 14 April, the Dutch government announced the projects approved for the National Growth Fund in 2022. In addition, NanoLabNL has been approved for the second tranche of the QuantumDeltaNL Dutch Growth Fund for maintaining and developing the Dutch national infrastructure in nanotechnology.

Of the projects awarded funding, NXTGEN HIGHTECH and PhotonDelta in particular make use of the many advantages offered by nanotechnology. NXTGEN HIGHTECH received €450 million and PhotonDelta €471 million. In addition to QuantumDeltaNL, these projects will benefit from the existing cleanroom infrastructure of NanoLabNL.

NXTGEN HIGH TECH

The NXTGEN HIGHTECH programme focuses on the development of a new generation of high-tech equipment. This programme will make an important contribution to the competitiveness, earning capacity and employment of the Netherlands. It will help address some of the larger societal challenges ahead (Health, Energy, Sustainability, etc.).

PhotonDelta

PhotonDelta is an international ecosystem of organisations in integrated photonics. PhotonDelta aims to develop photonic technology to address societal challenges such as sustainability, create a new European industry and open the door to a huge range of new applications, including quantum computing. Capital from the Dutch National Growth Fund and other organisations will be used to set up start-ups, scale up production, create new applications for photonic chips and develop infrastructure and talent.

Additional funds to maintain ecosystem

On the same day, additional funds in QuantumDeltaNL will be available for Nano4Society and MinacNed to deploy nanotechnology within the ecosystem to develop solutions for major societal transitions and create societal impact. The activities will contribute to MinacNed’s goal of strengthening the economy based on microsystems and nanotechnology.

In 2021 and 2022, MinacNed will host pre-events leading up to the international MicroNanoConference 2022. The symposia are live events in The Netherlands, offering an interesting program with speakers from industry and science, with an opportunity for networking.

The Nano4Society themes will be taken from the international MicroNanoConference. The MinacNed team aims to organize both (deep) tech events and also more high over themes like IP, HR and symposia on collaboration.

Micro Nano Symposium: From Science to Market: Biomedical Production Technology

On November 23, a Micro Nano Symposium will be organised around the 2021 Groeifonds application. The consortium of partners from science and industry responsible for the Growth Fund application (Groeifonds 2021) will celebrate the submission of their application, specifically the focus theme Biomedical Production Technology under the NXTGen High Tech program.

From Science to Market: Biomedical Production Technology
Biomedical production technology fails to keep pace with innovations in the biomedical domain. The (academic) knowledge in the Netherlands is at a very high level in the field of Lab-on-Chip, Organ-on-Chip, Artificial Organs and Cell production technology, but is not (properly) converted into products. The main reason for this is that a multidisciplinary chain is required of suppliers of high-quality specific components in both the technological and biological field. Although the required parties are present in the Netherlands, their production equipment and processes are not yet compatible with each other. These major challenges cannot be solved by a few parties, but a large collaboration is needed to be able to design and functionally qualify products from the existing developed building blocks (e.g., sensors, chips, biomaterials) in order to subsequently achieve upscaling and the growing (world) market.

MinacNed, hDMT, MESA+ and Nano4Society organize a pre-event of the international MicroNano Conference 2022 to address this topic and will present steps that are currently being taken to establish an ecosystem with a unique and first-of-its-kind production chain in the Netherlands.

We look forward to seeing you here. Registration is open, you will find the program and invited speakers on the event page. Read more and register today!

The event is  a live event in Enschede, at location The Gallery.

Partners in event: MinacNed, Nano4Society, hDMT and MESA+ Twente University

Aging, type 2 diabetes, shortage of healthcare personnel; our society is facing major challenges that require more knowledge and groundbreaking innovations. This offers opportunities for scientists, companies and public parties. NWO is responding to this by investing more than €100 million annually through various subsidy instruments in research in which public and private parties work together.

The role of SME’s

In order to achieve social and economic impact, the participation of SMEs is necessary and is therefore an important partner in research in all instruments. By sharing knowledge and collaborating on innovations, research results can be translated into solutions for society. For research that is financed within the Knowledge and Innovation Covenant (KIC), NWO applies incentives to involve SME’s more. NWO has opened 2 new instruments. om het MKB beter te betrekken.

About the instruments from NWO

  1. In ‘Question for Partners’, a public and/or private partner develops a research program in partnership with NWO around a specific knowledge and/or development question. The partner is a co-funder (min. €1.5 million in cash) in the program and NWO will double this amount. This instrument is therefore particularly suitable for (a combination of) public and/or private parties that want to initiate a thematic research program of a considerable size.
  2. In ‘Question for Consortia’ a consortium of knowledge institutes, public and private parties contribute to a research proprosal to find answer to a self-chosen knowledge or development question.

The financial NWO contribution to these instruments is available for fundamental and practice-oriented research, carried out by scientists in collaboration with companies. The degree of co-financing by private parties for these instruments is set at 50%, and at least 30% of the total size of the partnership.

More information about these and other research programmes can be found here www.nwo.nl/kic.

Source: HollandBio news

QuiX Quantum, the worldwide market leader in quantum photonic processors, has delivered a 12-mode quantum photonic processor to Germany, for a collaboration with researchers from Paderborn University.  This photonic processor is the most powerful in the world.

Quantum photonic processors are the central component of photonic quantum computers, holding great promises in performing certain computations faster than current supercomputers. Machine learning, chemistry and finance are believed to be revolutionized by such quantum technology.

QuiX Quantum lead engineer Caterina Taballione says: “This collaboration confirms the continuing interest in our products from the major players in the international quantum photonics landscape. Paderborn University is at the forefront of integrated optics, and we look forward to the results of this collaboration.”

The announcement comes on the heels of the announcement of a sale to Qontrol, a British quantum technologies startup, and a sale to Quandela, the leading French quantum technologies firm. Prof Christine Silberhorn, head of the Integrated Quantum Optics group and spokeswoman of the Institute for Photonic Quantum Systems (PhoQS), says: “We have chosen QuiX because of the high quality, turnkey linear optical circuit as used for demonstrating quantum advantage in boson sampling experiments, that only QuiX can deliver.

QUIX | Forward.one – Vrijdag 22 januari 2021 | © Verkijk

Germany has recently published its ‘Roadmap Quantencomputing’, which sketches the required steps on the way towards a working quantum computer. As a result, the German government announced a 2 billion Euro funding initiative for the development of quantum technologies in general and quantum computers in particular.

The success that QuiX Quantum’ products are having highlights the dominant position of photonics in the quantum computing landscape in the Netherlands, being the only able to provide turn-key quantum solutions.

Several MedTech initiatives from Twente have been awarded REACT-EU funding. The millions in subsidies will give the relevant companies and researchers in Twente an enormous boost, demonstrate the potential of MedTech in the region and strengthen Kennispark Twente as a MedTech hotspot.

Green light for MedTech Factory

In the MedTech Factory, start-up and fast-growing companies in medical technology will soon have access to high-quality and affordable microbiology labs. They can rent flexible space at the MedTech Factory until they are large enough to have their own building. The concept can be realised by initiators Novel-T and Kennispark Twente with the 3.1 million EFRO subsidy and the contribution already allocated from the RegioDeal via TwenteBoard.

Together with its regional partners, Novel-T recently presented its ambition to give the MedTech cluster in Twente a solid boost in the coming years. In September 2020, Jaap Beernink (CEO of Novel-T) and Eddy van Hijum (member of the Provincial Executive of Overijssel) presented an investment agenda on behalf of the regional cluster to State Secretary Mona Keijzer. On this agenda, affordable lab facilities were high on the priority list.

Anne-Wil Lucas, Area Director of Kennispark: “This grant is fantastic news for the region and Kennispark Twente. Without these subsidies, such facilities would never get off the ground, while they are essential for the continued growth of companies. This will ensure that we can retain Twente’s MedTech companies and attract companies from outside Twente.”

Consortia of knowledge institutes and Twente MedTech companies

In addition to the MedTech Factory, the other REACT-EU awards include various consortia of Twente MedTech companies and the University of Twente. These are collaborations that aim to use medical technology to contribute to an improved and affordable healthcare sector. These projects demonstrate the innovative capacity and power of cooperation within the regional cluster.

Innovations for the treatment of dementia and improved detection of breast cancer

For example, over 1.5 million euros was awarded to the ‘reMIND’ initiative, in which Demcon, Micronit and Locsens are consortium partners. Within reMIND, the parties bring together four different technologies to better treat dementia.

A second consortium, consisting of PA Imaging, Hemabo and the University of Twente in collaboration with Radboud UMC, will receive up to EUR 2.6 million for bringing photo-acoustic mammography to the patient.

A third example is the consortium formed around LioniX International, which includes Bronkhorst High-Tech, SurfiX, Qurin Diagnostics and PHIX. Together they are working on the SensorChip aimed at developing various types of gas, liquid and biosensors. They will receive over EUR 2.5 million for this project.

Finally, the Enschede-based company ILT Fineworks is involved in the industrialisation of the ELENA Heart Technology, for which a maximum of 1.7 million euros has been granted.

Jaap Beernink, CEO of Novel-T: “The award of these REACT-EU grants for both specific innovation projects and for strengthening the facilities in the ecosystem are of great importance for the development of the rapidly growing MedTech cluster in Twente. Innovative growth companies are the driving force behind this. For the region, the impact of these companies is particularly large, both from a social and economic perspective.”

About MedTechTwente

MedTech Twente is the innovation hub where medical technology is accelerating. For the past 15 years, the business community and healthcare institutions have been working closely together with researchers from the knowledge institutions to develop innovations for tomorrow’s healthcare. Innovations are developed, validated and implemented in close cooperation between parties, facilitated and accelerated by supporting organisations such as Novel-T, OostNL, VitaalTwente, HIP, WTC and HealthValley. It is therefore not without reason that successful MedTech companies such as Demcon, Medspray, Micronit, Lipocoat and IAMFluidics were founded and have grown in Twente.

About REACT-EU

The European Union is working with its recovery programme EU Next Generation on a fast, green, digital and resilient recovery of the regional economy. Under the name REACT-EU, 47.5 million euros – of which 5.9 million euros government co-financing – has been made available for the East Netherlands in 2021. This amount will be awarded to projects that have successfully submitted an application by 1 April. These projects must be completed by the end of 2023 so that the regional economy can recover as quickly as possible. The extra money has therefore been made available through the existing EFRO programme OP East 2014-2020. In OP Oost, the provinces of Gelderland and Overijssel work together to stimulate smart, sustainable and future-oriented projects at companies in the East Netherlands.

Source news: Kennispark Twente

New Photonic Integration Technology Center (PITC) to advance innovations for global technological and societal challenges with revolutionary chip technology.

On 2 June 2021, the integrated photonics industry accelerator PhotonDelta, research institute TNO, Eindhoven University of Technology and University of Twente will sign a cooperation agreement for the new Photonic Integration Technology Center (PITC) in the Netherlands. This centre will speed up the commercialisation of Integrated Photonics for applications such as autonomous mobility, healthcare, data & communications. The signing will be part of an online launch event which is open to everyone who has registered through https://pitc.nl/launch/
Integrated Photonics represents a revolutionary technology that allows the development of chips that can sense, capture and process huge amounts of data using light instead of electricity. By using light we can create new types of devices and systems, complementary to those that use electronics. Photonic integrated circuits pave the way for devices and systems that are cheaper, faster, lighter, more robust and reliable while using less energy. This opens new perspectives for developing purposeful digital solutions.

Bridging the gap between research and application

The new PITC is an independent R&D and innovation centre that brings photonic technologies to industrial maturity, builds partnerships, strengthens the photonics ecosystem, and links it to a global customer base.

Accelerating commercial adoption of integrated photonics

Customers get access to technology and know-how at an early stage while sharing the costs and risk of new technology development. The jointly developed innovations will be extensively tested for reliability and stability, facilitating the route to production.

Integrated photonics is a key enabling technology with a wide spectrum of applications allowing to respond promptly and efficiently to societal challenges of today and tomorrow.” says Carlos Lee, General Director of European Photonics Industry Consortium (EPIC), “The Photonic Integration Technology Center brings the integrated photonics to a level that it can be easily adopted by industry. This great ambition makes the PITC a perfect fit to the EPIC ecosystem.”
PITC offering

Specific PITC tasks will be:

  1. Developing technology in shared innovation programs
  2. Ensuring a smooth path to manufacturing ans commercialisation
  3. Providing access to high-tech infrastructure and facilities
  4. Supporting talent development for skilled professionals that build tomorrow’s high-tech ecosystem in the Netherlands.

PITC is a cooperation between PhotonDelta, TNO, University of Twente and Eindhoven University of Technology, and is enabled by Brainport Development, the Ministry of Economic Affairs & Climate, regional growth accelerators BOM and OostNL and the provinces of Noord-Brabant, Overijssel and Gelderland. PITC is located on the premises of Eindhoven University of Technology and University of Twente in the Netherlands.

Original press release PITC

New investment in light-powered biosensor accelerates the availability of high quality – low cost tests for early detection of cancer, Covid-19 and other diseases

 Surfix announces an investment of € 8,5 million by a Dutch consortium consisting of companies Qurin Diagnostics and LioniX International, industry accelerator PhotonDelta and the East Netherlands Development Agency Oost NL for further development of Surfix’s plug-and-play diagnostics platform.

Surfix will use the investment to accelerate the development of its fast, reliable and attractive plug-and-play diagnostics platform for all sorts of point-of-care tests. The initial target applications are early cancer diagnosis, Covid-19 detection and tracing of pathogens in water for aquaculture. 

 Wageningen, The Netherlands, May 25th, 2021

Low cost tests available for the masses

The global Covid-19 pandemic underlines the need for fast and reliable point-of-care diagnostics anytime and anywhere. Also in areas where there is no hospital, clinic or trained medical staff available. A sample taken from the patient is tested on the spot, next to the hospital bed, in the doctor’s office or even at home. Within minutes the result is visible and appropriate action can be taken. It is convenient, in some cases lifesaving, and there is no time-consuming and expensive laboratory work or equipment involved. The availability of a quick and reliable test would mean a huge step forward in the fight against the current and future pandemics. The ultimate goal for Surfix is to make a test that is available for the masses and at the cost of only a few euros.

Unique diagnostics platform

The biosensor of Surfix consists of two significant elements: the most crucial part is the chip in which the actual sensing occurs. The other part is the microfluidics part, in which the biological assay takes place in a small sample volume.

In the sensing part light passes through the chip (comparable to a minuscule glass-fiber spiral) instead of electricity. Biomolecules attached to the surface of the chip can catch other biomolecules out of a sample (for instance blood or urine), based on biorecognition. This causes a change in the properties of the light that is traveling through the chip, which can be detected and read by the sensor system. This change is a measure of  the presence of the biomolecule in the sample one is looking for.

Before entering the sensing part of the sensor, any sample needs to be processed (comparable to a very small laboratory). This takes place in microfluidic channels which feed the sample into the sensing part.

For the sensing part Surfix has developed unique nano-coatings which enable the binding of biomolecules and enhance the sensitivity of the sensor, while the microfluidic part is covered with a different nano-coating that repels biomolecules and enhances the flow of the sample through the microfluidic channels.

The plug-and-play diagnostics platform can be used to detect viruses, DNA and RNA, proteins like antibodies and antigens, and other biomolecules.

Combination of Dutch technology

The plug-and-play diagnostics platform combines LioniX’s integrated photonics chip with Surfix’s nanocoatings for the proper functioning of both the sensing part and the microfluidics part. Integrated photonics is a revolutionary technology that allows the development of chips that can sense, capture and process huge amounts of data with light instead of electricity. Using light means that new types of devices and systems such as biosensors can be created that are radically cheaper, faster, smaller, more robust and reliable while using less energy. Qurin will be the launching customer for the platform in the field of cancer diagnostics in a screening setting on a regular basis for the entire adult population. This way Surfix hopes to contribute to the early detection and cure of the cancer patient. Qurin’s novel biomarker technology aims to detect most if not all  cancer types in urine, including lung cancer and cancer of the large bowel.

 

Maarten Buijs, CEO of Surfix, is excited about the investment: “With this development, we have deepened our relationship with parent companies LioniX and Qurin, both University of Twente spin-offs. With OostNL and PhotonDelta  on board our drive is to bring point-of-care diagnostics to the next level. In combination with the network and experience of the two Dutch public-private organizations, the leading-edge integrated photonics technology of LioniX and the medical knowledge of Qurin, the investment will allow us to take on the industrialization of our solution and clinically validate the exciting results in biomarker detection obtained to date”.

Senior Investment Manager Tech Pieter Klinkert of Oost NL shares the excitement: “The solution of Surfix supports the important ecosystem of photonic biochips and microfluidics which Oost NL acknowledges as key enabling technologies. Surfix can realize a breakthrough in the field of diagnostics based on photonics. Surfix is a spin-off company of Wageningen University & Research and is actively collaborating with WUR and the photonics cluster in Twente. This makes it a perfect fit for the network around photonics and MedTech in the east of the Netherlands.

How can we ensure that the food that is produced lasts longer, food waste is decreased and a better distribution of the food among all population groups is ensured? During the MinacNed member event on May 20, the talks were on the application of nanotechnology in plastic food packaging. The technical presentations on the science behind the innovation, but the goal of the speakers is clear: Increase the sustainability of our food and reduce the plastic waste mountain in order to contribute to a better world.

Dr Albert Schenning from Eindhoven University of Technology and PhD student Ivanna Colijn, Wageningen University have shared a clear story that can still be seen for those who missed it. The presentations were followed by an interesting discussion with questions from the participants.

Read more about the invited speakers on the event page.

Share your own idea for a theme

The MinacNed events are organized for and by MinacNed members. Once a month MinacNed organizes an event around a technical or social theme in micro and nanotechnology.

If you have an idea for an event or if you have a question that you would like to tackle with experts, please send a message to MinacNed. The MinacNed member events are for and by members and we are happy to think along with you about speakers and the content of the event.

Contact us direct to share your ideas.

The 4 technical universities (4TU), including the University of Twente and WUR, are joining forces with three medical academic centers and venture investor Innovation Industries to bring medical technical (medtech) solutions to the market faster. This week, the Ministries of EZK and OCW awarded 8 million euros to the medtech consortium from the Thematic Technology Transfer (TTT) scheme. This TTT scheme is best practice in Europe in the field of support for spin-offs, incubators and universities. The consortium aims to further expand the good international position of the Dutch medtech sector.

This TTT scheme is best practice in Europe in the field of support for spin-offs, incubators and universities. The consortium aims to further expand the good international position of the Dutch medtech sector.

Technological innovations are desperately needed to keep healthcare affordable, qualitative and manageable in the long term. However, the route to the market is very complex and difficult for medtech spin-offs. The Knowledge Transfer Offices (KTO) of TU Delft, TU Eindhoven, University of Twente and Wageningen University & Research, together with the KTOs of Erasmus MC, RadboudUMC and Maastricht UMC, and VC fund Innovation Industries, are building a national and open program.

Less downtime and faster to the market

“The initiative for this application comes from 4TU, with the University of Twente as lead party,” says Roy Kolkman, Manager of the KTO of the University of Twente. “With this investment we lay an excellent foundation for the medtech spin-offs in the Netherlands. By enriching the breeding ground with the right knowledge and expertise, the chance of failure is smaller and the time-to-market is shortened. ”

Better propositions

“By joining forces between UMCs and TUs, we arrive at strong propositions,” says Thijs Spigt, KTO director of Erasmus MC. “The knowledge and experience within the consortium ensures faster validation and a better business proposition. Extensive attention is paid to clinical demand, technical feasibility and business development. ”

Expansion of leading position

“The Netherlands is a frontrunner in the development of new technologies. However, bringing it to market is a major challenge. We invest in this consortium and do everything we can to make it a success. In addition to capital, we make an important contribution with our knowledge, experience and network, “says Pleuni Hooijman, fund manager at Innovation Industries.”

Source: Health Valley news

With three speakers from different backgrounds, MinacNed gave a broad picture of the application of Thin Film / MEMS technology on April 20. This event is freely accessible to members of MinacNed and the aim is to exchange knowledge between experts and interested parties on a specific theme.

Thin Film/MEMS applications

From Philips, Rob van Schaijk has provided insight into new technology applications, including a look at the future of ultrasound imaging. Richard Norte, assistant professor at TU Delft, showed in his presentation how thin film mirrors are used and which interfaces there are with other nano application areas. Aaike van Vugt, CEO of VSParticle showed that his company focuses on the endless applications of nanoparticles and the collaboration they enter into with strategic partners. Moderator Frank van de Scheur led the session in which the speakers were challenged in discussion and by questions from the participants.

MinacNed has tackled a broad subject here, in which the three presentations have their own perspective, which gave the participants a brief impression of the application of Thin Film / MEMS. For those who have missed the session, it is possible to watch it again. Send an email to Aurélie Veltema via a.veltema@minacned.nl.

Read more about the event and the speakers’ abstracts.

Share your suggestion for a theme

Events are being planned for the months of May and June that will be announced shortly. If you have an idea for an event or if you have a question that you would like to tackle with experts, please send a message to MinacNed. The MinacNed member events are for and by members and we are happy to think along with you about speakers and the content of the event.