SFI Research Centre for Smart Manufacturing
CONFIRM, the SFI Research Centre for Smart Manufacturing, officially launched on 15th May 2018. Its researchers will occupy newly renovated offices at Park Point UL, bringing world-leading technological innovation to the centre of Limerick. Manufacturing is the second largest employer in Ireland, accounting for €110 billion in exports, and globally it is a rapidly changing landscape. CONFIRM, funded through Science Foundation Ireland’s Research Centres Programme, will work with a range of industry partners to transform Ireland’s manufacturing sector.
CONFIRM is a world-leading SFI research centre in Smart Manufacturing hosted by the University of Limerick. Our mission is to transform industry to become leaders in Smart Manufacturing.
Smart Manufacturing is the process of fusing intelligence to the production process to improve manufacturing performance via automation and data analytics. CONFIRM has expertise across Industry 4.0 Smart Manufacturing ecosystem and works to identify business needs in partnership with industry and then selects the right research team to help to solve business challenge.
We have an extensive researcher network that spans 9 research partner institutes and 16 international collaborations this is coupled with 100+ industry partners and supported by €45M in funding.
Please click on a competency below to view associated Principal & Funded Investigators
The CONFIRM research community currently consists of approximately 120 researchers (Principal & Funded Investigators, Fellows, Postdocs, PhDs, Masters, & PDRAs) offering an extensive breadth of expertise and experience both in Academic and Industrial settings, working across our broad research programme outlined below. Our Programs are managed operationally by our operations team program managers (where applicable with industry experience) and scientifically by our Work program leaders.
For further information visit confirm.ie.
CONFIRM’s Digital Innovation Hub (DIH) is focused on the application of digital innovation across the manufacturing value chain to foster growth and competitiveness in the Irish manufacturing industry and enable Irish based manufacturing companies to compete within the rapidly changing global landscape.
For further information visit confirm.ie
CONFIRM is hosted by the University of Limerick in partnership with:
- Tyndall National Institute
- University College Cork
- Munster Technological University
- University of Galway
- Athlone Institute of Technology
- Maynooth University
- Limerick Institute of Technology
- Institute of Technology Tralee
Industry and Commercialisation
CONFIRM works collaboratively with industry to identify current and future smart manufacturing needs. CONFIRM gives industry partners a competitive advantage by ensuring the right research team is working to drive business readiness for Industry 4.0. CONFIRM has experience working across MNC and SMEs within diverse sectors, including, Pharmaceuticals, Medical Devices, Chemical, Nutrition & Beverage, Computer, Electronic, Optical, and Electrical equipment. CONFIRM offers industry partners a unique opportunity to transform and optimise their production facilities and associated services with the potential to greatly increase productivity and output.
CONFIRM’s new headquarters has currently constructed a new dedicated Digital Manufacturing facility in the University of Limerick’s Digital District, which opened in March 2020. This facility will enable a community of practice where CONFIRM will host 130 researchers, 12 operational and management staff, resident and visiting investigators from CONFIRM’s 9 national research partners, international collaborators, industry partners, as well as test-bed and prototype facilities.
Current industry partners include
- Johnson & Johnson
- Analog Devices
- SCRI-IS Technologies Ltd
- Modular Automation
- SL Controls
- Robotics & Drivers
- ATG Europe
CONFIRM’s new headquarters, a bespoke 1,619 m2 Digital Manufacturing facility, located within the University of Limerick Digital District was launched in December 2020. The Confirm Centre hosts 130 researchers, 12 operational and management staff. The new facility includes a large test-bed to house Ireland’s future factory demonstrators, an 8 metre diameter Virtual Reality Cave, a 10Gbyte internet access, the first 5G Digital Manufacturing Network in Ireland, and a Digital Manufacturing lab to include 3D printing and non-contact 3D part scanning. This facility will be the centrepiece of Confirm’s research network and through a dedicated Community of Practice area – will link our researchers, industry partners and the general public together to raise the profile of manufacturing in Ireland and Internationally.
Across our partner institutes, we have an array of cutting edge equipment::
- Process & Product Development Labs – Tyndall National Institute
- Process Technology Services – Tyndall National Institute
- JAMIR Composite Joining Suite – University of Limerick
- Universal Robotics UR Series Cobots – University of Limerick
- MAXIEM 1530 Water-Jet Machining Centre – University of Limerick
- Ultrasonic Welding Facility – University of Limerick
- Injection Moulding Smart Manufacturing Cell – Athlone Institute of Technology
The importance of clearly demonstrating the impact of the research carried out at Confirm is a central part of how we operate. Case studies can help to quantify the return on investment and improve general understanding of the concept and principles of Industrial Digitisation.
Education and Public Engagement
For many, the term “manufacturing” doesn’t immediately evoke thoughts of STEM or cutting edge scientific research. Furthermore, there is a widespread misconception that careers in the manufacturing sector are predominantly menial jobs with little room for growth or development. The EPE programme at CONFIRM addresses these issues by bridging the gap between academia/industry and the lay population and raising public awareness of research and developments in the manufacturing industry that are ushering in the dawn of the 4th Industrial Revolution.
Mapped onto the key research areas of the Centre, CONFIRM offer a suite of cross-curricular educational programmes built on the STEAM model, which aim to inspire the next generation of Scientists and Engineers while also developing key transferable skills such as creative problem solving and collaboration.
CONFIRM Researchers engage with the community through a number of Public Engagement initiatives including Pint of Science, our “Engineering the Future” social media campaigns, national STEM festivals and events such as Inspire Fest.
Further information visit confirm.ie
Key Contact Details
Prof. Conor McCarthy
Reporting, Compliance and Finance Manager
Sean O Brien
Education, Public Engagement and Training Manger
Dr. Niall Keely
Strategic Research Programme Manager
Dr. Sean Nolan
Business Development Manager
Marketing and communications Manager
Dr. Sinead Mellett
MSCA Smart 4.0 Programme Manager
Senior Administrator Director’s Office
Chief Operations Officer