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Launch of a new European project on data-driven simulation

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Published on Friday, 26 October 2018

The University of Luxembourg is the coordinator and main beneficiary of a 1 million euro project which aims to boost its scientific excellence and innovation capacity in data-driven simulation. Funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme for research and innovation, the University of Luxembourg will benefit from top international partners. DRIVEN project was officially launched on 15 October 2018 with more than 80 attendees from academia and industry on Belval campus.

During the next 3 years, the University of Luxembourg will benefit from the knowledge and experience exchanges from the Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en Automatique - INRIA (France), University of Limerick (Ireland) and University of Texas at Austin (USA). 

They will raise the European state-of-the-art in the field of computational engineering and especially in the following research topics:

  • Mathematical foundations for data-driven simulations
  • Data-driven simulations for computer-assisted therapy
  • Data-driven simulations for functional composite materials 

This project is developed in close collaboration with the Doctoral Training Unit (DTU) on Data-driven Computational Modelling and Applications (DTU DRIVEN), coordinated by Prof. Andreas Zilian from the University of Luxembourg. With a budget of 3.4 million euros over six years, this pioneering programme will train a new generation of early-stage researchers with the required knowledge and skills to tackle complex data-intensive problems in all sectors of the economy. 

The kick-off meeting gathered participants from all faculties and centres of the University of Luxembourg and from the government and industries. After a welcome speech by Prof. Stéphane Pallage, Rector of the University of Luxembourg, who was very pleased of this new collaboration, Prof. Jens Kreisel, Vice-Rector for Research, underlined the cross-disciplinary research done at the University of Luxembourg while Prof. Paul Heuschling, Dean of the Faculty of Science, Technology and Communication (FSTC) presented the challenges of the new research priorities. 

Then, Marco Walentiny, in charge of the Directorate for research and innovation at the Ministry of the Economy, focused on the growing importance of digital technology in all sectors of the economy and welcomed this initiative, which is perfectly in line with the government’s digitalization strategy to build a dynamic data-driven economy. 

As coordinator of the project, Prof. Stéphane Bordas from the Computational Engineering group at the University of Luxembourg, introduced the topic: “Knowledge is never complete and research never finished. Computational sciences is an interdisciplinary field that incorporates knowledge from statistics, computer science and mathematics to enable scientific discovery and engineering applications. By using data-driven modelling, we can tackle challenging application domains such as medical simulations. Indeed, we can develop a digital replica of the real system which lives a “digital life” in parallel to the real system and can be interrogated to make decisions. These “twins” could enable the surgeons to “see through” the patient and investigate the potential response of a patient to a given treatment. The potential of computational sciences is enormous.” 

Besides, Prof. Bordas presented the three main project activities to strengthen the research excellence in data-driven simulation and enhance the research and innovation capacity of the University of Luxembourg, namely:

  • Short-term staff exchanges will involve two-way secondments between the University of Luxembourg and its twinning partners to share and expand the scientific expertise in the three research sub-topics.
  • Knowledge exchange will involve the organisation of different training events such as workshops, international conferences and summer schools to accelerate the transfer of new knowledge from and to Luxembourg.
  • Dissemination and promotion of the project results will increase the visibility of DRIVEN partners’ research profile and contribute to raise the European state-of-the-art in the field of data-driven simulation. 

Before concluding the meeting, Prof. Bordas gave the floor to the project partners who presented their institutions and main research activities. The afternoon was dedicated to round tables in order to establish future collaborations. Several staff exchanges and promising activities are already planned for the coming months. 

More information: https://2020driven.uni.lu   

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