Three out of seven new ‘Perspectief’ research programmes will be led by UT scientists. Detlef Lohse is the programme leader on reducing virus transmission through the air, Marcel Karperien is going to do reseach on diagnostics and treatment on arthrosis. And Ton van den Boogaard would like to include more scrap in the steel production process. In two other programmes, the University of Twente is partner as well. The grants are awarded at the TEKNOWLOGY innovation festival today.
In total, Dutch Research Council (NWO), domain Applied and Engineering Sciences, selected seven programmes. They all are about urgent problems like making industry more sustainable. In total, 74 scientists will find employment in these programmes. Together with the Duch Ministry of Economic Affairs, NWO could award 22 million euro for Perspectief. Industrial partners and other collaborating organisations add to this an amount of 10 million.
Preventing airborne transmissions of viruses
MItigation STrategies for Airborne Infection Control (MIST)
Programme leader: Prof. Detlef Lohse (Physics of Fluids, TNW faculty)
Since the global impact of COVID-19, we are acutely aware of the risk of diseases dispersed through the air. Virologists, epidemiologists, fluid mechanics and engineers will join forces in the MIST programme to better understand and prevent airborne viral transmission. Under various conditions, the researchers will study the infectiousness of viruses, the spread of fluid droplets in the air, and the influence of ventilation and the purification of air on the transfer of viruses. They will subsequently translate this knowledge into practical recommendations about which measures can be deployed in the most efficient, cost-effective and sustainable manner in various environments ranging from people at home to hospitals, schools and trains.
Programme leader: Prof Marcel Karperien (TechMed Centre)
In the Netherlands, more than 1.5 million people suffer from arthritis – a rheumatic condition of the joints that causes pain, stiffness and difficulty in moving. As arthritis is a condition that mainly occurs among older people, the number of patients is set to increase due to the ageing of Dutch society. At present, there is no adequate treatment for arthritis. The OAinject programme will develop new diagnostic tools that will determine which form of arthritis a person has so that individualised treatments can be offered. The researchers will also work on innovative ways of gradually administering drugs locally over a longer period of time via an injectable drug depot in the joint. With this approach, the consortium will ensure that patients can retain an active lifestyle that helps to prevent other conditions such as cardiovascular disease and dementia.
More scrap metal to produce steel
Data Enhanced Physical models to reduce Materials use (DEPMAT)
Programme leader: Prof Ton van den Boogaard (Faculty Engineering Technology)
CO2 emissions from steel production and a drastic reduction in the required quantity of iron ore could be realised by reusing more scrap metal in the production process. However, that is difficult because the composition of scrap metal is not always consistent. This leads to variations in the mechanical properties of the steel produced and hence to problems in the manufacture of steel products. The DEPMAT project will develop new material models that predict how the composition of the raw materials and the settings of the production process will influence the final properties of the steel produced. That will make it possible to use more scrap metal and simultaneously guarantee a constant steel quality.
Apart from these three programmes, led by University of Twente scientists, UT is also involved in a programme on cleaner shipping with ammonia, as well as a programme on sustainable food production.
You can also check NWO's press release for the full overview of 'Perspectief'.