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Integrated tactile surface actuator design

Final Report Summary - INTERACT (Integrated tactile surface actuator design)

The Interact project originally was aimed at the design and test of a breakthrough haptic interface, by making a programmable surface topology or shape by applying state-of-the-art dielectric polymer actuators surfaces.
Due to a change of the research project on dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA) to another department within Philips Research in the time between submission of the proposal and start of contract the scientific focus of the project – to which the MC proposal was aligned – had changed. In agreement of all parties the MC project was realigned to the research project. The project’s focus shifted to optics in particular adaptive optics. This shift allowed a deeper integration into Philips Research. In this way Marc Matysek gained even more knowledge and broadened his knowledge base to manage multi-disciplinary research projects. Besides the change of application the training on the skills to step from research to invention – representing the body of this fellowship – was unchanged and successfully realized.
Another main objective was the user-centric development approach, which was of course applied to the new task as well. The relocation in an optics group offered the possibility to directly cooperate with world class scientists in this field of expertise – and making all day life already multidisciplinary. The combination with his expertise on dielectric elastomer actuators was a fruitful mix which generated complete new applications in the field of adaptive optics. Results that have been obtained are relevant for Philips and have led to several demos and publications on conferences as well as filed patent applications.
Beyond the work on the adaptive optics project Marc used the internal networking to identify new application fields for this new technology. In this way he strongly contributed to push DEAs as a technology platform for Philips and releasing the full potential of this new technology and obtain more use for Philips. These activities successfully resulted in internal funding.
The Interact project has given Marc Matysek the opportunity to join Philips Research in the Netherlands for a 2 year fellowship. It has extended his already excellent competences on dielectric polymer actuators with experience in optics, finite element modeling, application know-how and user-centric design. The business focus, application skills, as well as the intellectual property and project management experience that he has gained at Philips will facilitate his further career. After the Interact project, Marc Matysek will be a mobile innovator with a strong and relevant scientific background. He will now be able to carefully judge on the needs for any project when to focus on result-oriented deliveries and when to perform research to obtain deeper understanding to be able to properly use new research results.
Next to the development of his technical and management / organizational skills he deeply dived into another European culture providing new learning on social level. Especially the combination of moving to another country and strong activities in a European network increased the sensitivity to carefully sense these cultural differences. The opportunity to supervise foreign students from third countries makes this experience perfect.
In the future Marc Matysek will be able to adequately network within Europe and should be easily able to widen this network world wide. Having used the possibility to get a taste of industrial working in a European industrial company – present and acting all over the world – he can now choose how to continue his career. He has gained a clear picture of the differences of academic and industrial jobs based on his own experiences in both worlds. With this as an advantage he can carefully choose his next steps to further pursue his successful career.