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History

 

 

 

In detail

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The MCIA Center - Innovation Electronics, is located in the Terrassa Campus of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), which has rapidly grown in recent years and has nowadays become one of the most important technological campus in Catalonia. In the same way, the MCIA Center has grown proportionally during the last decade by increasing its research and technology transfer activities till taking part, nowadays, between the ten most significant research and technology transference groups in the UPC and main research groups in turnover terms at Terrassa Campus. The basis of the MCIA Center financing is the knowledge transfer to the industrial sector supported by a dynamic research activity and scientific excellence.

 

In January 2003, the MCIA Center established a line of research within the Electronics Department at UPC itself with a multidisciplinary group consisting of researchers from the Electronic and Electric Engineering Departments of the UPC, and in May 2004 became Recognized Research Group from the UPC. Even though the foundation of the MCIA Center as a research group dates from 2003, its members have been collaborating in the areas of power control, electric motor drives and diagnosis of mechatronic systems since 1997. The results of this period were highly satisfying for the Group, which acquired a background of important information regarding alternating current motor drives and problems related to their control. During these years, the MCIA Center research activity and technology transfer took place mainly in collaboration with local industry, by means of private subcontracting or under National CDTI projects framework. This model allowed the group to approach the industry and meet the needs around rotating machinery and monitoring systems throughout different projects as “Sistema de Adquisición y Transmisión inalámbrica de las variables eléctricas de una red trifásica por medio de un enlace Bluetooth” (REF: CTT-C5492), with CIRCONTROL S. A., in 2004.

During the 2006-2009 period, the MCIA Center was recognized as an Emerging Research Group by the Agència de Gestió d’Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca de la Generalitat de Catalunya (code 2005SGR 463). This period represented the activity’s model change towards a National consciousness. Therefore, the MCIA Center started to work aligned with the National research lines described by the Spanish Government throughout the CYCyT framework. Indeed, since the 2006, the MCIA Center has been involved in three consecutive CYCyT projects, related with electrical motor analysis (REF: DPI2005-25238-E), high efficiency electromechanical actuators (REF: DPI 2007-66688-C02-01), and axial flux motor based drive for car applications (REF: TRA2010-21598-C02-01). Also, during the 2006-2009 period, multiple private and public granted projects were presented and developed by the MCIA Center around power electronics, as "Amplificador modular de potencia clase D DCI-NPC de 3 niveles para megafonía con control de estabilidad para variaciones de carga" (REF: CTT- C07194). In the same period, the MCIA Center started to work in FP6 and FP7 European projects as RTD performer by developing specific tasks related with electric motor monitoring and instrumentation such as "More Open Electrical Technologies MOET" (REF:AIP5-CT-2006-030861), and "Low Cost, Predictive Maintenance System for Industrial Machinery based on IM Current Analysis LOTPIM" (REF: COOP–CT-2005–016884). Results of multiple projects feedback each other, and configure the background of the Group in electric motors, power electronics and instrumentation research areas.

 In 2009, the MCIA Center was recognized as Consolidate Research Group of the Generalitat de Catalunya (code 2009SGR 1235) and a member of the Technology and Innovation Network of the local Government of Catalonia (TECNIO network). Since this date, the MCIA Center has been expanding its activity leading research and technology transfer projects with a clear National and European focus. The applicant Group has reinforced industrial links, especially within the vehicle’s sector, by the development of specific motor designs and assessment, as well as power converters approaches for multiple companies such as SEAT S.A. and SIEMENS AG, by means the scientific leading in the "Consorcio estratégico nacional de investigación técnica para el estudio de tecnologías del V.E.R.D.E" (REF: Programa CENIT 2009), related with new electric vehicle technologies. At European scale, since 2009, the MCIA Center has increased its international contacts, resulting in the preparation of different granted FP7 proposals, such as "Intelligent Monitoring System based on Acoustic Emissions Sensing for Plant Condition Monitoring and Preventative Maintenance MOSYCOUSIS" (REF: FP7-SME-2008-1 232472), and "Increase of automotive car industry competitiveness through an integral and artificial intelligence driven energy management system EUROENERGEST" (REF: E01127).

In 2012, the MCIA Center expands its fields of application to high voltage systems by means of the AMBER research laboratory, High Voltage Test and Research Center, in collaboration with SBI Connectors fruit of the technological transfer projects done with the electrical industry and part of the strategic lines of the research group in energy efficiency.

In 2013, the MCIA Center increase its facilities by means of the incorporation of new simulation laboratories to complete the technological requirements to reach high performance technology transfer services and high-quality scientific developments.


During the next years, the MCIA Center activity and financing model will be focalized in three branches: (i) Generation of R+D activity cores with the National industry through the integration of the MCIA Center as scientific and technology performer. Currently, the MCIA Center is taking part of the discussion groups, together with SEAT S. A., Volkswagen AG and the NFF research center of Lower Saxony, for definition of research projects focused on high-performance automotive electric drives. (ii) Increase of technology transfer at European scale, not only by means of FP7 program, as the  granted project "Modelica library of detailed magnetic effects in rotating machinery MAGMOLIB" (REF: FP7-CleanSky-SGO-MAGMOLIB), and the next HORIZON 2020 framework, but also intensifying the relations with European partners by means collaborative activities. And (iii) The intercontinental expansion, mainly in Latin America, to stimulate industrial networking with the Spanish industry, as the granted Iberoeka project "Plataforma automotriz para vehículo eléctrico urbano energéticamente eficiente VEUREE2" in partnership with Mexico indutrial and scientific institutions as well as Spanish industrial partners.