NUI Galway Students Win Prestigious National Logistics and Transport Awards

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Four NUI Galway students have managed to secure all of this year's Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport national awards. The national awards are presented to the originators of the most innovative ideas which could make the most significant contribution to some aspect of the transport industry in Ireland. The winners were announced at a special ceremony at NUI Galway and presented by Senator Rónán Mullen. The winners announced were: · Natasha O'Farrell from Letterkenny, Co. Donegal, winner of the Safety & Environment Category. · Lt. David Kiely a serving Army Officer from Dromree, Macroom, Co Cork, winner of the Logistics and Transport Category. · Lauren Paul from Marquette University, winner of the Air Category. · Tristin Hatch, from University of Southern California, winner of the Road Category. Both Lauren and Tristin are international students participating in a European study programme. Professor Padraic O'Donoghue, Dean of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, said: "I would like to warmly congratulate all four winners of these prestigious awards. This reflects well on the quality of the student body at NUI Galway, the supervision of the lecturing staff and the range of relevant educational programmes that we provide. It is particularly noteworthy that two of the winners are visiting students from well known US universities and this illustrates the international nature of the educational experience at NUI Galway". Ms Mary Dempsey, College of Engineering and Informatics, who taught the Logistics and Transportation module taken by the winning students said: "The students' abilities to innovate are reflected in the attainment of these prestigious Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport awards. I am extremely proud of our students and I acknowledge the hard work, dedication and commitment that each student makes in the Logistics and Transport area. University education continues in its mission to develop innovative skills and talent which is vital to the development of our economy". -ends-

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NUI Galway Lecturer Awarded First Annual Crossland Medal for Engineering Innovat

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

(Leagan Gaeilge) NUI Galway's Dr Conchúr Ó Brádaigh has been awarded the very first annual Crossland Medal for Engineering Innovation by Engineers Ireland. A part-time Senior Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering at NUI Galway, Dr Ó Brádaigh is also Joint Managing Director of ÉireComposites Teoranta in Indreabhán, Co. Galway. The Crossland Medal was presented to Dr Ó Brádaigh by Sir Bernard Crossland in recognition of his outstanding and innovative contribution to manufacturing processes within the aerospace and energy generation industries. The award was presented at a special event held recently at Queen's University Belfast. In presenting the Medal, Sir Bernard Crossland stated that Dr Ó Brádaigh was a worthy recipient of the First Crossland Medal for Engineering Innovation which is named in his honour. Sir Crossland noted that he has a proven track record of exploiting research in developing hi-tech industry in Ireland and his achievements are an example to young entrepreneurs. Following the presentation, Dr Ó Brádaigh delivered a keynote lecture on his work, entitled 'Development of thermoplastic composite manufacturing processes for aircraft and large wind turbine blades'. Dr Ó Brádaigh holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Centre for Composite Materials at the University of Delaware, USA, and M.EngSc. and B.E. degrees from NUI Galway. The focus of ÉireComposites Teoranta, which he jointly founded and developed, is the manufacture of thermoplastic composite components for the industrial sector and today it employs some 60 people including 20 graduate engineers. Dr Ó Brádaigh's innovations in the manufacture of large scale wind turbine blades are highly significant in the rapidly expanding area of energy generation by wind power that is of huge industrial and environmental importance to the west of Ireland. He has also made a very strong contribution to the field of mechanical engineering generally and to the development of strong and productive alliances between industry and academia, in particular NUI Galway. President of NUI Galway Dr Jim Browne, who is also President of Engineers Ireland, congratulated Dr Ó Brádaigh on this well deserved honour, saying that it reflects very well on the University. Sir Bernard Crossland, who sponsored the award, is former Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Queen's University Belfast, and has himself made an enormous contribution to the development of the mechanical engineering field in academia and in industry in Ireland, both north and south. An Chéad Bhonn Bliantúil Crossland do Nuálaíocht Innealtóireachta bronnta ar Léachtóir as OÉ Gaillimh (View in English) Tá an chéad bhonn bliantúil Crossland do Nuálaíocht Innealtóireachta bronnta ag Innealtóirí Éireann ar an Dr Conchúr Ó Brádaigh ó OÉ Gaillimh. Oibríonn an Dr Ó Brádaigh mar Léachtóir Sinsearach páirtaimseartha le hInnealtóireacht Mheicniúil in OÉ Gaillimh agus tá sé ag obair mar Chomhstiúrthóir Bainistíochta ar ÉireComposites Teoranta in Indreabhán, Co. na Gaillimhe freisin. Ba é Sior Bernard Crossland a bhronn Bonn Crossland ar an Dr Ó Brádaigh mar aitheantas ar an tsárobair agus ar an nuálaíocht atá léirithe aige i ndáil le próisis déantúsaíochta sa tionscal aeraspáis agus sa tionscal ginte fuinnimh. Bronnadh Bonn Crossland ar an Dr Ó Brádaigh ag searmanas speisialta a bhí ar siúl in Ollscoil na Banríona, Béal Feirste le déanaí. Dúirt Sior Bernard Crossland go raibh an-áthas air an Chéad Bhonn Crossland do Nuálaíocht Innealtóireachta a bhronnadh ar an Dr Ó Brádaigh. Ainmníodh an gradam áirithe seo in onóir Sior Bernard Crossland. Dúirt Sior Crossland go n-éiríonn leis an Dr Ó Brádaigh taighde a spreagadh agus tionscal ardteicneolaíochta a fhorbairt in Éirinn agus gur dea-shampla d'fhiontraithe óga a bhfuil bainte amach aige go dtí seo. I ndiaidh an tsearmanais, thug an Dr Ó Brádaigh léacht faoina chuid oibre dar teideal 'Development of thermoplastic composite manufacturing processes for aircraft and large wind turbine blades'. Tá Ph.D. in Innealtóireacht Mheicniúil ó Ionad na nÁbhar Ilchodach in Ollscoil Delaware, SAM, agus M.EngSc. agus B.E. ó OÉ Gaillimh ag an Dr Ó Brádaigh. Tá ÉireComposites Teoranta, a raibh sé ina chomhbhunaitheoir agus ina chomhfhorbróir air, dírithe ar ilchodaigh ilchodacha theirmeaplaisteacha a dhéanamh don earnáil thionsclaíoch agus tá 60 duine fostaithe ag an gcuideachta anois, 20 céimí innealtóireachta san áireamh. Ábhar suntais go háirithe an dul chun cinn atá déanta ag an Dr Ó Brádaigh i ndéantús lanna tuirbíní gaoithe móra ó tharla borradh a bheith faoi ghiniúint fuinnimh ó chumhacht na gaoithe i láthair na huaire agus tábhacht thionsclaíoch agus chomhshaoil a bheith ag baint leis seo in iarthar na hÉireann. Chomh maith leis sin, d'éirigh leis an-dul chun cinn a dhéanamh san innealtóireacht mheicniúil go ginearálta agus d'éirigh leis comhpháirtíochtaí láidre, bisiúla a fhorbairt idir an saol tionsclaíoch agus an saol acadúil, le OÉ Gaillimh go háirithe. Thréaslaigh Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh agus Uachtarán Innealtóirí Éireann, an Dr Jim Browne, leis an Dr Ó Brádaigh agus dúirt sé go gcuireann a leithéid d'aitheantas le dea-cháil na hOllscoile freisin. Iar-Ollamh le hInnealtóireacht Mheicniúil in Ollscoil na Banríona, Béal Feirste é Sior Bernard Crossland, urraitheoir an ghradaim, fear a chuir go mór le forbairt na hinnealtóireachta meicniúla sa saol acadúil agus sa saol tionsclaíoch in Éirinn, ó thuaidh agus ó dheas. -Críoch-

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NUI Galway Entrepreneur Wins Technology Development Competition

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

The winner of this year's Inter-college Technology Development Competition is Eoghan Clifford, Research Engineer from NUI Galway's College of Engineering and Informatics. The winning technology is based on developing a novel integrated process technology to convert organic carbon, solids, nitrogen, phosphorus, odours and greenhouse gases (present in municipal, industrial and agricultural biosolids) to high-value useful products in a market worth about € 3.5 billion per annum in Europe alone. The Inter-College Technology Development Competition is a collaborative programme between NUI Galway, TCD and UCC and is funded by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) under the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) which includes multidisciplinary teams and cross-university teams working together on the commercialisation of research and technology transfer. One of the competition organisers Fiona Neary of the Ignite Technology Transfer Office, NUI Galway said: "The standards were very high and the expert panel made up of Venture Capitalists, funding agencies, business and academic professionals were extremely impressed by the level of technologies showcased. It was an exciting event where feedback from the experts revealed that more entrepreneurial training with a strong focus on market validation and financial strategy is critical to deliver successful commercial opportunities". Throughout the programme participants from NUI Galway, TCD and UCC were given training and mentoring to assist them prepare and present their commercial opportunities to an experienced panel. The variety of technologies ranged from a bartering system for online services, the next Google, solar technologies, knowledge transfer algorithm and minute batteries. Ms Neary added: "These emerging technologies with the convergence of innovation, training and commercialisation will help deliver Irelands Smart Economy of the future". Dr Michael Rodgers from NUI Galway's College of Engineering and Informatics, and supervisor for the winning project, said: "It is very exciting to be part of the winning team. There is an urgent need to develop new technologies that can sustainably process increasing volumes of biosolids generated during the treatment of municipal, agricultural and industrial wastes. I would like to extend my congratulation to Eoghan and the other members of the team, Edmond O'Reilly, Eimear Ruane, Kathy Carney and Dr Aoife Keady". -ends-

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New Software Company Spins Out of NUI Galway

Monday, 11 May 2009

(Leagan Gaeilge) NUI Galway has announced details of a new spin-off company, Qpercom Ltd. The software and services company, based in the University's business incubation facilities, provides an online assessment tool to replace any kind of paper-based form or check list. The company's initial target market is medical schools across Europe, of which there are almost 140, with well over one million students. Qpercom Ltd. has already secured as customers the Medical School at Erasmus University in Rotterdam, and NUI Galway's School of Medicine and its School of Nursing and Midwifery. NUI Galway's Dr Thomas Kropmans is one of the founders of the company and developed the technology with his colleagues at the University's Medical Informatics and Education group in the School of Medicine. He comments: "Quality assurance in medical education and assessment is an absolute necessity. This innovative web platform allows electronic data capturing and real-time data analysis. Therefore, improved quality assurance and appropriate educational decision making can be achieved. The financial benefits are also very compelling, as our customers are realising savings of up to 70% in administrative costs, not to mention savings on paper and printing". Until now, the performance of medical students during their clinical examinations has been recorded on paper forms by the assessor. A cohort of 600 medical students produces at least 8,600 forms. Those forms would then have to be compiled, manually calculated and keyed into a database, resulting in a delay before results could be viewed. Such paper marking sheets can now be replaced by Qpercom's online Assessment Management System* with results compiled instantly. Last month, medical students at NUI Galway were successfully examined using Qpercom's technology. NUI Galway's Dr Barry O'Donovan, a lecturer in General Practice, said: "This is a really exciting development. The innovative software was a complete success and the laborious tick boxing is now all gone. Even more importantly, we can now analyse station and examiner performance. We can now ensure that the only variable in the exam is the student. This software is going to be of great interest to medical schools in Ireland and internationally". Qpercom's products and services also have huge potential in other markets where instantaneous results from forms or check-lists would be of benefit. Such markets include industrial education, sports education, agriculture and health and safety. Reflecting Qpercom's broad appeal, the new company has secured In Tense Safety Training & Assessment in the Netherlands as a customer. Radmer de Jong of In Tense comments: "Qpercom has delivered a great custom-made product to meet our requirements, because they took the time to investigate the demands needed in our field and specified by our company. An online interface was designed to score our outdoor training sessions to ensure validation of our assessment tool". NUI Galway has a long standing involvement with the promotion of indigenous enterprise and a strong record of start-up companies. Other innovative spin-out companies are in the pipeline and are currently at late stage negotiation. Seach-Chuideachta Bogearraí Nua Bunaithe in OÉ Gaillimh (View in English) Tá sonraí fógartha ag OÉ Gaillimh maidir le seach-chuideachta nua, Qpercom Ltd. Soláthraíonn an chuideachta bogearraí agus seirbhísí seo, atá lonnaithe i ngorlann ghnó na hOllscoile, uirlis measúnachta ar líne a bheidh in úsáid in ionad foirmeacha agus seicliostaí páipéir. Is iad scoileanna leighis ar fud na hEorpa an spriocmhargadh a bheidh ag an gcuideachta ag an tús. Tá beagnach 140 scoil leighis ar fad ann, agus breis is milliún mac léinn. I measc na gcustaiméirí atá aimsithe ag Qpercom Ltd. cheana féin tá Scoil Leighis Ollscoil Erasmus in Rotterdam, Scoil an Leighis, agus Scoil an Altranais agus an Chnáimhseachais in OÉ Gaillimh. Tá an Dr Thomas Kropmans ó OÉ Gaillimh ar dhuine de bhunaitheoirí na cuideachta agus d'fhorbair sé an teicneolaíocht seo i dteannta a chomhghleacaithe i nGrúpa Ionformaitice agus Oideachais Leighis na hOllscoile, Grúpa atá lonnaithe i Scoil an Leighis. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá aige: "Tá géarghá le dearbhú cáilíochta in oideachas agus i measúnacht leighis. Ciallaíonn an t-ardán gréasáin nuálach seo gur féidir sonraí a ghabháil go leictreonach agus gur féidir anailís fíor-ama a dhéanamh ar shonraí. Is é an buntáiste a bhaineann leis seo gur féidir dearbhú cáilíochta a fheabhsú agus cinntí oideachais cuí a dhéanamh. Baineann buntáistí suntasacha airgeadais leis seo freisin, tuigeann ár gcustaiméirí gur féidir suas le 70% a shábháil ar chostais riaracháin, le cois airgead a shábháil ar pháipéar agus ar phriontáil". Go dtí le blianta beaga anuas, ba é an measúnóir a choimeád taifead ar pháipéar d'obair na mac léinn leighis le linn dóibh a bheith i mbun scrúduithe cliniciúla. Bíonn thart ar 8,600 foirm i gceist le cohórt 600 mac léinn leighis. Ansin bheadh na foirmeacha ar fad le tiomsú, na marcanna le suimiú agus le hiontráil ar bhunachar sonraí. Thógfadh sé seo ar fad roinnt ama sula mbeadh na torthaí ar fáil. Is féidir Córas Bainistíochta Measúnachta ar líne Qpercom* a úsáid anois in ionad na mbileog marcála páipéir rud a chiallaíonn go mbíonn torthaí ar fáil láithreach bonn. An mhí seo caite, baineadh leas as teicneolaíocht Qpercom le mic léinn in OÉ Gaillimh a chur faoi scrúdú. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag an Dr Barry O'Donovan, léachtóir ó Roinn na Dochúireachta Teaghlaigh: "Is cinnte gur forbairt thar a bheith spéisiúil é seo. D'éirigh thar cionn ar fad leis an mbogearra nuálach seo agus tá deireadh anois le ré na mboscaí beaga agus na dticeanna. Níos tábhachtaí ná sin, táimid anois in ann anailís a dhéanamh ar obair stáisiúin agus ar fheidhmiú na scrúdaitheoirí. Féadaimid a chinntiú anois nach mbeidh ach athróg amháin sa scrúdú feasta – an mac léinn. Níl aon amhras orm ach go mbeidh an-spéis ag scoileanna leighis in Éirinn agus scoileanna leighis ar fud na cruinne sa teicneolaíocht seo". Tá neart deiseanna eile ann freisin táirgí agus seirbhísí Qpercom a fhorbairt i margaí eile ina mbainfeadh tairbhe le torthaí a fháil láithreach bonn ó fhoirmeacha agus ó sheicliostaí. I measc na margaí sin tá oideachas tionsclaíoch, oideachas spóirt, talmhaíocht, agus sláinte agus sábháilteacht. Cruthúnas eile fós ar an tóir a bheidh ar an gcuideachta nua seo is ea gur éirigh le Qpercom cuideachta atá lonnaithe san Ísiltír ar a dtugtar In Tense Safety & Assessment a fháil mar chustaiméir. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Radmer de Jong ó In Tense Safety & Assessment: "Tá táirge shaincheaptha den chéad scoth deartha ag Qpercom a chomhlíonann na riachtanais atá againn mar go raibh siad sásta an t-am a chaitheamh i mbun scrúdaithe ar ár riachtanais agus ar na riachtanais a shonraíomar. Dearadh comhéadan ar líne a chur ar ár gcumas scóir a choinneáil dár seisiúin oiliúna allamuigh d'fhonn a chinntiú go raibh ár n-uirlis measúnachta oiriúnach". Tá baint ag OÉ Gaillimh le fada an lá le fiontar dúchasach a chur chun cinn agus cuidiú le cuideachtaí nua. Tá seach-chuideachtaí nuálacha eile á bhforbairt i láthair na huaire agus críoch curtha beagnach leis na hidirbheartaíochtaí ina lán cásanna. -Críoch-

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The GAA at 125…NUI Galway Alumni Event

Thursday, 7 May 2009

RTÉ Sport presenter Colm Murray will host a history lecture to celebrate the GAA's 125th birthday in Dublin on Tuesday, 12 May at 7.30pm at the Davenport Hotel, Merrion Square, Dublin 2. Murray will introduce the passionate GAA enthusiast and celebrated academic, Professor Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh from NUI Galway, who will deliver a lecture entitled 'The GAA at 125 - The Challenges of Change'. The event is organised by the NUI Galway Dublin Alumni Group. Professor Ó Tuathaigh will look back at the success of the association and the challenges it now faces. He will make the case that the secret of the GAA s success as a social force in Ireland for 125 years lies in its capacity (at leadership and rank and file levels) to adapt to changes in the wider society. Professor Ó Tuathaigh argues, "Its adaptability - and its ability to manage change - rather than any deep conservatism inherent in the organisation; this is its key characteristic". The lecture will also consider some of the main challenges facing the GAA at the present time, and those likely to challenge it during the next decade. These include; globalisation (sport as a product in a global entertainment market), urbanisation, professionalism and the amateur ethos, and the role of women at all levels of the Association. Paraic Duffy, Director General of the GAA, will provide his response to Professor Ó Tuathaigh's points of view at the end of the lecture. Professor Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh is an alumnus of, and Professor of History at, NUI Galway. He has lectured and been a visiting professor at numerous universities in North America, Britain, Australia, and continental Europe. In addition to his many publications (in modern Irish and British history), he is an experienced broadcaster (in Irish and English) in the main media in Ireland and Britain. Tickets for the event will be allocated on a 'first-come, first-served' basis to graduates of NUI Galway who apply via email to or phone Colm O'Dwyer on 091 493750 -ends-

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