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Laser Bionic Surfaces

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - LaBionicS (Laser Bionic Surfaces)

Reporting period: 2018-09-01 to 2020-02-29

LaBionicS aims at both commercializing and industrializing a surface laser processing approach for biomimetic surface texturing developed during LiNaBioFlud project. This approach provides controlled formation functional (micro-/nano- structured) surface textures that mimic skin structures found in different animals and insects (biomimetic surfaces). More specifically the project will use the advanced laser-processing strategies, developed during the LiNaBioFLuid project, based on self-organization of material surface, to mimic the specific topography of the integument of bark bugs, sharks, butterfly wings and moisture harvesting lizards. Our investigations gave strong indications that these nano-features play an important role for the functionalizing surface in engineering applications relevant to Directional Fluid transport, Antibacterial / Antifouling, Antireflectance, Drag reduction, Friction Reduction, Self Cleaning and Water repellency. Beside these main advantageous functionalities, the approach has enormous versatility for modulating the final biomimetic properties and applicability in a real industrial line.

The project will follow an open innovation approach with three main enablers for commercializing and industrializing the technology. There are three main enablers/themes that will facilitate the work of the LaBionicS project that will enable the funneling of different ideas into viable highly potential commercial applications.
The LaBionicS project work was focused on three main topics/questions: a) For what application the biomimetic surface laser processing is ready to demonstrate it's potential ? b) Is it possible to commercialize the technology and create high value applications? c) What companies and organisations are interested in working together as partner or customers to build together new products.

The LaBionicS project focuses on activities for discovering suitable markets and applications for results derived from the FET-OPEN LiΝaΒioFluid project. Our approach for exploring technical feasibility in different application areas was based on exploiting initial technological results from LiNaBioFluid project for demonstating the biomimetic surfaces potential to possible end-users. This helped us on gather necessary feedback for directing our research and development towards the right direction and meaningfull applications.

Furthermore, we investigated the potential path for entering the market with our biomimetic processing technology. This investigation included the approaching of potential users and discussion with them about how our technology could become a reality in the commercial production lines. We discovered client segments, the most appropriate go-to-market strategy and business model. This work answered several questions regarding who possibly could be our clients, what actually is our add-value and what are the barriers to go further into industrialization and commercialization of our technology.
The LaBIonicS project has supported the commercialization of a technology that has already demonstrated disruptive innovation possibilities for exploitation. The project has the interest of parties who sees benefit in using the technology for their products. Through the project we gathered market requirements and leveraged on communication activities worldwide to discover high-potential innovations. With this we innovated closer to market by putting emphasis on creating prototypes/proof of concepts/minimal viable products that provided tangible validation of the product – market fit.
The results in the future will promote the creation of interesting and high technology new jobs in the areas of the laser processing and the wider manufacturing domain. Taking into account the non linear future growth of markets that employ successfully disruptive technologies it is increasingly important to have sufficient availability of skilled personnel. Skilled personnel, qualified workers, technicians, engineers or researchers, with the adequate education (both formal and vocational) are essential for the sector supporting to the deduction of unemployment which counts more than 26 million unemployed people in the European Union.
Logo of the LaBionicS project