I-Form, the SFI Research Centre for Advanced Manufacturing, has agreed a collaboration with Westport-based w1Da to accelerate the development and production of eco-friendly electric marine motors.
The two-year programme, which is worth €225,000, will focus on 3D printing of high-strength, low-weight components that are key to the advancement of next generation electric motors. The I-Form research team at UCD will be led by Professor Denis Dowling, Professor Alojz Ivankovic and Dr Andrew Dickson.
"The I-Form team at UCD brings together materials science, engineering and data analytics expertise to develop advanced manufacturing processes. The partnership with w1Da is an important example of how these skills can be applied to the design and manufacture of sustainable solutions with lower carbon emissions," said Prof Dowling.
Rory Staunton, w1Da’s Chief Technology Officer (CTO ), said: "This project will create synergy between our hydrodynamics and power electronics know-how and UCD’s extensive expertise in 3D printing and advanced materials. We will work together to develop more efficient ‘zero emissions’ motors across the marine industry.
"High-strength, low-weight recyclable composite materials are a key factor in delivering long-range and efficient propulsion and regeneration systems. Our new electric motors will provide recreational and commercial boat owners across Ireland with a sustainable, pollution-free alternative to noisy, petrol outboards and unreliable diesel engines."
Joe Casey, w1Da General Manager, said: "The research and development collaboration with UCD is a key element of our company’s plans to expand eco-friendly manufacturing, attract further sustainable investment, establish sales across Europe and recruit more skilled staff in the West of Ireland in 2022."
w1Da is based near Westport and is being advised by Mike Feeney, who is a former executive director of Enterprise Ireland. The company is supported by private investors, grant aid from the Marine Institute and Mayo Local Enterprise Board.
I-Form’s mission is to shape the future of manufacturing through high-impact research into the application of digital technologies to materials processing. I-Form brings together a nationwide pool of expertise in materials science, engineering, data analytics and cognitive computing.