Major focus on innovations for research facilities

19 October 2018

Fredrik Engelmark is leading the Uppsala node of Big Science Sweden.

Hello there... Fredrik Engelmark, Collaboration Manager at UU Innovation and Project Manager for Big Science Sweden at Uppsala University. What is Big Science Sweden?

“It is a national initiative to build up Sweden's resources for developing and delivering technology and innovation to major research facilities in Europe and other parts of the world. The organisation has offices in Uppsala, Lund, Lule√• and Gothenburg, and is run as a partnership between the University, industry-related networks, institutions and regions.”

What is the background of the initiative?

“There is an imbalance between input and output, to the detriment of Swedish innovative power. The facilities, such as ESS, MAX IV, CERN and ITER, make up a global market representing billions of SEK, but Swedish companies have thus far been underrepresented when it comes to taking advantage of the business opportunities and technical development. At the same time, Sweden invests heavily in these research infrastructures, and researchers at Swedish higher education institutions, Uppsala included, are involved in the design and development.” 

How will it be done?

“It is important to create bonds between the companies and the major research infrastructures by connecting them with academic researchers who have both contact networks at these facilities and expertise that can complement the companies' own expertise. Strengthening the collaboration between industry, academic research and the regions enables us to create high-tech innovation projects and, thereby, business opportunities with research facilities around the world. It would drive both the research front and competitive power forward.”

What is your focus right now?

“Meeting with companies that we want to see become part of the Big Science market, and establishing a dialogue with researchers who could contribute to delivery together with companies. In parallel, I am familiarising myself with the needs of the research facilities by becoming involved in the procurements currently in progress.”

What's on 5 December?

“In collaboration with Big Science Sweden we will invite researchers and companies to a half-day event on the topic of new materials and material-related challenges focusing on Big Science facilities that Sweden is part of and financing. The event takes place at Hubben in Uppsala Science Park and will include presentations by researchers and companies as well as discussions on how we can work together with innovation projects for large-scale research facilities.