LONDON Leading Irish companies and institutions have joined together to create WirelessLab, an all-island network for Ireland's wireless technology community.
Network members include Alcatel-Lucent, BiancaMed, DecaWave, Ericsson, FMG Electronics, Socowave, Taoglas, The Institute for Micro and Wireless Systems at National University of Ireland Maynooth and The Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology (ECIT) at Queen's University Belfast.
Objectives include the promotion of Ireland as a centre of excellence for wireless technology, doubling employment in the sector over the next 5 years and the establishment of extensive international links.
David Cleevely, chairman of Cambridge Wireless, attended the launch of WirelessLab and signed an alliance agreement between his organization and WirelessLab. "We are delighted to form an alliance with a like-minded technology community in Ireland. It opens up opportunities to promote an open-innovation environment in Britain and Ireland, strengthening our ability to compete in a global market," Cleevely said.
Joe Moore, founder of startup Socowave Ltd., is the first chairman of WirelessLab, which will be initially located at NovaUCD, the Innovation and Technology Transfer Center at University College Dublin where Socowave is headquartered.
At the launch Moore said: "Underpinning Ireland's ability to compete in the expanding global wireless market is its range of existing technology companies and the quality of the designers and engineers graduating from Irish universities. However, we need to expand this talent pool to support the establishment of a center of excellence that competes globally."
A key collaborative activity for WirelessLAB is the establishment of special interest groups (SIG), or industry-led technical forums. SIG topics are selected to be leading-edge and address significant technology challenges facing the industry. SIG events are designed to be engaging, to keep members up-to-date with the latest developments in key areas and to assist them in exploring new business opportunities.
At the launch the first two WirlessLAB SIG topics, Green Wireless Networks and Body Centric Communications were announced. The Green Wireless Networks SIG will address the need for major improvements in wireless network architectures, protocols and hardware that will be needed to stabilize and reduce the power consumed per user. The Green Wireless Networks SIG is being championed by Bell Labs Ireland and will explore the opportunities opened up by the international GreenTouch Initiative.
The Body Centric Communications SIG will focus on all aspects of systems and applications where the user is a key component of the wireless network. This will include bringing together both wireless and software companies and researchers working on advanced, highly interactive applications such as augmented reality and man-machine interfacing. The Body Centric Communications SIG is being championed by ECIT, Queen's University Belfast.
Membership of WirelessLAB is offered at full, startup and associate levels with differing benefits available at each level. Membership fees have been set on a sliding scale depending on company headcount.