Sirris evaluates the technological and economic feasibility of new technologies related to mechanical engineering & mechatronics, and Industry 4.0
The main objective of Sirris Application Lab Kortrijk is to evaluate the technological and economic feasibility of new technologies related to mechanical engineering & mechatronics, and Industry 4.0. Sirris investigates the methods that can help solving problems of SMEs and if the proposed solutions are affordable.
To reach these objectives, Sirris uses a specific method. First, Sirris’ experts analyse the indicated problem at SME-level. Often, SMEs want to digitalize, while they should first simplify or optimize their existing infrastructure. In short, the Application Lab looks what is useful and affordable in a specific context. Second, the lab evaluates the feasibility of a proposed solution by developing a proof of concept on a theoretical and/or practical level. In this regard, SMEs can always use the high-tech infrastructure and the application labs of Sirris for testing. Finally, the lab develops a transformation plan and guides SMEs to external parties who can implement the proposed solution. E.g. if an SME wants to install a cobot on a production line, Sirris develops a proof of concept and contacts the commercial provider of such cobots.
The main stakeholders of the Application Lab are: SMEs, research institutes, governments (e.g. the Province of West Flanders) and the commercial sector. The main beneficiaries are SMEs with specific needs related to mechanical engineering, mechatronics and/or Industry 4.0.
The funding resources of Sirris are twofold:
1) Member fees (¼ of Sirris’ revenues)
2) Revenues from research and individual projects (¾ of Sirris’ revenues)
Human resources of Sirris: 140 experts in total (across 8 sites in Belgium; the Application lab in Kortrijk is one of these sites)
Evidence of success
Some company cases:
- Fomeco has implemented a collaborative robot after have done a feasibility study with Sirris. More information on: https://www.sirris.be/success-story/fomeco-introduces-lwr-pipe-processing-operations
- Euraqua (https://www.euraqua.com/) is redesigning its assembly line, based on the results of a feasibility study on the innovation potential for their production process.
Potential for learning or transfer
Sirris Application Lab offers support for developing, testing and implementing technological innovations, by combining 3 crucial elements, resulting in affordable, feasible and practical solutions:
- Customised support for technological innovations: the experts of Sirris help SMEs to forge ahead by working together to find practical solutions to any specific technological problems or overseeing the transformation of innovative ideas into attractive end products
- Availability of high-tech infrastructure and a network of industrial partners: Sirris helps finding out the feasibility of an idea. Not just by offering advice, but also by testing the innovative solutions in an industrial setting, either on behalf of an SME or in conjunction with an SME
- Monitoring the latest technological and market trends: experts monitor the latest technological and market trends on behalf of SMEs & share these developments, ideas and business cases with SMEs in blog posts, articles & seminars.