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Centre of Advanced Materials Research and Technology Transfer CAMART²

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - CAMART2 (Centre of Advanced Materials Research and Technology Transfer CAMART²)

Reporting period: 2018-08-01 to 2020-01-31

"The CAMART² (‘Excellence Centre of Advanced Material Research and Technology Transfer’) project is aimed to upgrade the existing Centre of Excellence at the Institute of Solid State Physics, University of Latvia (ISSP), which was established in 2001 by the former project CAMART, realised within EC FP5.

The CAMART² project is based on a long-term partnership between ISSP, KTH Royal Institute of Technology – the largest technical university in Sweden, and RISE – Research Institutes of Sweden.

ISSP is renowned for its scientific achievements in applied materials physics for micro- and nanotechnology, electronics, photonics, functional coatings etc. and related theoretical and characterization capability.

The vision of CAMART² is to establish ISSP as the most important centre of excellence for education, science, innovation and technology transfer in the Baltic States. ISSP will also become the hub for a collaboration and technology transfer platform (called ""RIX-STO"") for materials physics including scientists, entrepreneurs, investors and policy makers on both sides of the Baltic Sea.

The commitment from the Swedish partners assures successful modernization of ISSP, including an overall refinement of the educational programs, strengthening of the research and development activities towards higher technology readiness levels, establishment of an innovation system and Open Access Laboratory, as well as ISO 9001 certification.

The partners play a substantial role in an ambitious program for networking and outreach to make a real impact on academia and high-tech industries in the region around Riga and Stockholm, with respect to scientific results, economic growth and increased competitiveness. The region will benefit from an injection of highly educated young people, closer collaboration between academia and industry, and offering state-of-the-art open access research infrastructure boosting innovation and economy."
The project has successfully passed setting-up phase and full exploitation of results is in process. Continuous improvements process will take place as well.

The appointment people at the key leading positions and most of the relevant staff has been done. Project of this size has created challenges in the implementation of the new organisation and with the involvement of a relevant number of people. Efforts are put into place together with Consortium international partners KTH and RISE to ensure the changes to happen smoothly.

Summary of the progress by the key areas:
- WP1 – Research Program, Action Plan and Annual Reports of Scientific Achievements were developed. Four Priority Research Directions for increasing strong international scientific capacities have been decided and further elaborated within 13 application-driven Research and Innovation Domains. International partners RISE and KTH actively engaged in pre-evaluation and screening of ISSP research proposals that helped to increase significantly the project success rate. Next major upgrade for the Research Program is planned during 2020.
- WP2 – Innovation development system is created and exploitation has started. ISSP is a recognized national ecosystem actor. Regional innovation system development strategy is created in a frame of Riga-Stockholm platform. IP management framework is developed.
- WP3 – Master’s and PhD study programmes have been developed and included in the curriculum of the University of Latvia. The realization of the Mater’s programme in the autumn 2019 has started. Alumni programme has been elaborated, the first meeting of Alumni has been organized.
- WP4 – Open Access Laboratory (OAL) business model for collaboration with industry is designed and implemented, key staff of service laboratories selected and appointed, processes and standardization started and under-way in collaboration with WP6, main infrastructure is installed, remaining tools procurement and facility upgrade in process.
- WP5 – networking and promotion strategy (including general outreach and promotion, Riga-Stockholm collaboration and industry strategy) is developed, sales compensation and CRM systems implemented, various outreach activities for science, education, innovation, sales process with industry in Latvia and internationally are performed, dissemination and promotion materials are created.
- WP6 – service-oriented organisation is created, and exploitation is started. Quality management system is developed and ISO 9001:2015 certification awarded. Laboratory Information Management Software (LIMS) implemented, KPIs and results compensations system being updated.
- WP7 – project operational, main activities conducted according to the plan, new organisation set-up and milestone reached, roll-out and exploitation in process.
The CAMART² project aims to upgrade the existing Centre of Excellence at ISSP UL by building a long-term strategic partnership with the internationally leading R&D&I institutions KTH and RISE, which are highly successful in research commercialization. The CAMART² project is expected to improve the research and innovation environment at the Excellence Centre that will result in the creation of RIX-STO collaboration and technology transfer platform. With its recognition as a highly competent partner for relevant EC-defined KETs (Advanced materials, Photonics, Nanotechnology and Micro- and Nanoelectronics), the centre will reach the top EU level and continue to develop and broaden after the end of the project period. CAMART² project will boost the scientific and innovations excellence of ISSP through a range of new R&D&I projects and the attraction of top-level scientists and students. Technology exploitation, business generation and long-term sustainability will be promoted by the development of an innovation system, an institute reorganisation, an active human resource management and training, extended outreach and networking activities, refinement to the education system, and development of the Open Access Laboratory, all of which are described in detail in Section 3 of this proposal.

The quality and intensity of the research, innovation and education will improve substantially. Increased income resulting from research, innovation and industrial projects, Open Access Laboratory user/service fees from industry, and reimbursements from University for education of students will replace CAMART² funding, thereby providing long-term financial sustainability of the upgraded Centre.

We expect that the realisation of the project will have a multilevel impact on
- Institutional level impact – ISSP research, innovation, and education,
- National level – impact on the Latvian economy, including the experience of CAMART² becoming an arena for the development of the innovation system in Latvia
- Regional impact – Riga-Stockholm science-innovation collaboration and beyond.

At the current stage of the new organisation having been set-up many of the expected benefits and impacts exploited and can bee seen already – in terms of science, innovations, education, open access laboratory, outreach, organisational change, Riga-Stockholm collaboration. Yet broader internal and external impact shall be vivid and measurable after period in the exploitation for the results of the full roll-out to be seen.
Work in cleanrooms
Project CAMART² logo
Deep Science Hackahton 2019
CAMART² consortium logos
RISE Senior Vice President – ICT Charlotte Karlsson's visit to ISSP UL
H2020 Teaming Club meeting group photo Riga, May,2019
CAMART² kick-off - from right Robert Jan Smits (EC DG) and Karlis Sadurskis (Minister of E&S)
CAMART² kick-off meeting - group photo
Project management meeting
Solar Cup competition at ISSP UL - car race
Mālpils School excursion at ISSP UL
Crystal for science promotion
ISSP clean rooms
Physics Festival 2019 in Riga
Explaining physics in an easy way at Physics festival 2019