The scientific and academic world of Lublin is known for its wide variety of different disciplines and examined topics. It has been a role model of working for the balanced development of the city and its society for years. The educational industry is the crucial foundation for the Lublin’s economics, generating up to 18% of the city’s GDP. A modern and fast-growing academic center of Lublin creates the interdisciplinary-research-friendly ambience. The innovative conceptions and smart solutions achieved this way are being successfully introduced by the local institutions and companies.
The high rate of generating inventions and innovations recorded in recent years in Lublin contributed to the increase in their transfer to the economy. Knowledge Transfer Centers support entrepreneurs in establishing cooperation with scientific centers, coordinate the implementation of commissioned research and research and development projects, promote innovative solutions, carry out commercialization processes of scientific research results, patents and copyrights. They care for the protection of intellectual property. The integration of the scientific community and the business community allows for broader use of scientific achievements through their transfer to the economy.
Inventions made in Lublin
Examples of solutions developed at Lublin University of Technology include: a device for plasma treatment of plants, a device to support training, mainly rowing and kayaking, a sound transducer, as well as a tool for cross-rolling forged balls. Other solutions proposed by LUT scientists are devices for filtering and recovering heat from flue gases discharged through a chimney.
Moreover, Łukasz Kwaśny and Karol Fatyga, in cooperation with Dariusz Zieliński and Bartłomiej Stefańczak from the Department of Electrical Drives and Machines at LUT, invented a system and a way to control a transformer with an energy storage.
‘The solution is a breakthrough because it can replace the classic MV/LV power transformer used to supply electricity to single-family houses, factories and all facilities requiring power supply. There are more than a hundred thousand devices of that kind in the whole country. The introduction of this solution makes it possible to accumulate energy while maintaining all the functionalities of the classic transformer,’ explains Karol Fatyga, M.Sc.
Research, which is conducted, by scientific institutions at the University of Life Sciences in Lublin in the laboratories, clinics, experimental and private farms represents a valuable contribution to the development of agricultural and veterinary sciences. Numerous publications in reputable national and international scientific journals reflect the value of scientific achievements. Expanded cooperation with the business sector (manufacturing plants, meat processing plants, sugar refineries, breweries, etc.) results in a large number of reported and obtained patents, utility models and implementations.
The Lublin University of Technology has become a leader in terms of the number of patent applications filed in 2019. The high position of Lublin University of Technology in the report confirms the innovativeness of our employees’ research work. We are the leader in terms of the number of applications submitted in 2019, which was 135. Taking into account the number of invention patents and utility model protection rights granted by the Polish Patent Office, we are one of the most active institutions in Poland,’ says Prof. Zbigniew Pater, Rector of Lublin University of Technology (LUT).
The Vice-Rector for General Affairs and Development of LUT, Prof. Dariusz Czerwiński, adds: ‘Effective transfer of the best solutions to the market is one of the most important tasks of the university. This is what the socio-economic environment as well as the researchers themselves expect. That is why it is so essential to provide appropriate equipment and organisational and financial background at the university, so that the employees are interested in commercialisation and want to benefit from patent protection. I think this is something that works well at our university, and as a result, our scientists are becoming increasingly effective,’ emphasizes the Vice-Rector.
The main entities responsible for the integration of the scientific and business community in Lublin:
|The Center for Knowledge and Technology Transfer of UMCS||www.biznes.umcs.pl|
|Lublin Center for Technology Transfer of the Lublin University of Technology||http://lctt.pollub.pl/|
|Center for Technology Transfer of the University of Life Sciences in Lublin||https://www.up.lublin.pl/ctt/|
|Knowledge Transfer Center of the Catholic University of Lublin||https://www.kul.pl/centrum-transferu-wiedzy-kul,art_31828.html|
|Knowledge Transfer Center of the Medical University of Lublin||http://www.portalwiedzybr.umlub.pl/|
|Innovation and Technology Transfer Centre of the Lublin Science and Technology Park||https://lpnt.pl/|
Beeswax Machine to Expose Beeswax Counterfeiters
A device for preventing the counterfeiting of beeswax has been invented by scientists in Lublin. By analysing the beeswax, the invention can not only distinguish between natural wax and modified or contaminated wax, but will also assess the usefulness of wax in the beekeeping economy, improve the condition of bee families and reduce losses in honey production.
The analysis is carried out by a portable electro-mechanical device which penetrates the sample and collects information about its physical and chemical properties.
According to the researchers from Lublin’s Maria Curie-Skłodowska University Centre for Knowledge and Technology Transfer, beeswax counterfeiting is common. There are no procedures requiring routine quality control of wax as a marketed raw material.
The scientists said: “The problem of counterfeiting is also important because next to honey, beeswax is one of the most important bee products used not only in beekeeping, but also in many industries, including dyeing, weapons manufacturing, metallurgy, pharmaceutical or cosmetics.”
Current methods for assessing the quality of beeswax rely on organoleptic assessment or analysis. Costly methods used for testing require samples to be delivered to laboratories, where the measuring equipment is located.
To determine the quality of beeswax, the GC-MS test is performed, showing the total amount of saturated hydrocarbons in the sample, which is then compared to a standard specific for natural waxes.
Analysis of one sample costs about PLN 300, which is equivalent to the purchase price of about 10 kg of beeswax. The test is rarely performed and, according to scientists, inaccessible for small wax producers.
The Maria Curie-Skłodowska University Centre for Knowledge and Technology Transfer is currently conducting activities related to commercialisation of their invention and searching for potential buyers.
The device has been described in three international patent applications by Professor Mariusz Gagoś from the Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Dr. Marek Pietrow and Dr. Jan Wawryszczuk from the Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science of the Maria Curie-Skłodowska University.
A prestigious award for a breakthrough technology in the field of rapid cancer diagnosis
A prestigious award on behalf of the European Commission in the Innovation Radar Prize 2020 competition in the Women-led Innovation category
The breakthrough technology in the field of rapid cancer diagnostics was awarded. It is a fiber-optic microprobe that will be used in the rapid diagnosis of cancer. The technology for which SDS Optic was nominated for Dr. Staniszewska in the Women-led Innovation category developed thanks to the grant received from NCBiR in the STRATEGMED program.
SDS Optic works in Lublin on ultramodern diagnostics of breast cancer. A modern research and development centre was opened in Lublin, where researchers from SDS Optic, the beneficiary of the National Centre for Research and Development, will work on cancer diagnostics solutions. Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer found in women around the world. Every year there are about 1.7 million new cases of breast cancer and nearly half a million deaths. An effective and rapid method of detecting the disease could save the lives of many patients. This is the solution that the interdisciplinary SDS Optic team from Lublin is working on.
SDS Optic develops and creates innovative solutions on the borderline of biochemistry, engineering and fibre optic technologies, that can be used in cancer diagnosis and treatment.
Our technology is a breakthrough. We create a tool for direct measurement of the HER2 marker. The use of a microscope will save the patient pain and stress associated with biopsy and waiting for the result – says Marcin Staniszewski, President of the Board of SDS Optic and the originator of the microscope, a graduate of the University of Akron and a collaborator of NASA Laboratory.
Our vision is to make widespread use of our technology to diagnose breast cancer. According to WHO analyses, a fast and effective cancer diagnosis can lead to a reduction in mortality of up to 30%. The problem affects hundreds of thousands of women around the world, who thanks to our technology will receive reliable and fast diagnosis and better chances for curing – adds Magdalena Staniszewska, PhD, Scientific Director of SDS Optic and the originator of the microscope, for many years associated with Harvard Medical School in Boston.
The research and development centre opened on 19 April will allow intensifying the work of SDS Optic on a globally unique technology of in vivo diagnostics, directly in the patient’s body. The laboratory is divided into three areas, each of which will have a qualified team of biologists, chemists, biomedical engineers and physicists. The company is in the process of developing its interdisciplinary team, and scientists who join the group often return from abroad, including the UK and Italy.
SDS Optic is also open to cooperation with scientific circles;
The SDS Optic team is working on a breakthrough technology based on rapid detection of the test substance in the body, including cancer markers, with particular accuracy, the use of laser beams and the use of innovative components. At the end of the process, the reading is interpreted on the detector using an appropriate conversion algorithm, which gives the level of the tested compound (e.g. HER2 cancer marker) in a numerical form. Due to the high sensitivity of detection, it will not be necessary to measure the markers inside the tumour tissue itself, but in its vicinity.
Thanks to the use of a thin microsound, the device is to perform accurate, very fast and less painful measurement of tumour markers. Currently, SDS Optic focuses on breast cancer, with particular emphasis on the measurement of the HER2 and CCL markers.5 Such diagnosis will allow physicians to start a therapy suitable for the patient much faster, which in turn will translate into the effectiveness of the treatment process.
The development of innovative technology for the production of laser microsomes is possible thanks to the significant support of SDS Optic from public funds. The National Centre for Research and Development co-financed the project under the STRATEGMED and PatentPlus programmes. INNOventure also invested PLN 3 million in the development of SDS Optic, a fund of the Kraków Technology Park and private investors established as part of the initiative of NCBiR – BRIdge Alfa.
SDS Optic is also one of the largest beneficiaries of the SME Facility under the “Horizon 2020” programme of the European Commission and a member of the “Lublin Medicine Cluster”.
Biofertilizers – ecological formulations stimulating the growth and yielding of crop plants
Silver medal at the Intarg International Invention and Innovation Fair in Katowice. The team also received a statuette of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Ecological bio-fertilizer, developed by scientists from the Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, increases yields by up to 40%. The innovative preparation can be used to cultivate legume plants. Talks are underway to introduce the product to the market.
Discovery of medieval women’s jewelry in Czermno
First place in the “Scientific Discovery of the Year” category in the National Geographic TRAVELERY 2011
Prof. Andrzej Kokowski from Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin emphasised very high artistic value of the discovered items. “This jewellery had to be made by the masters who trained in the finest workshops of their time. This usually points to Byzantium, at the time the centre (in addition to Spain), which created the canons of beauty” – he said.
“Those who made the jewellery had to be world-class masters. Most likely, the items were brought here, but I would not be surprised if they were made locally, because the area already had the potential” – added Kokowski.
The items were discovered in this and last year. In a tomb, located on the site of embankment, archaeologists discovered several silver head ornaments, including earrings from the twelfth and thirteenth century, which probably were placed in a leather bag. Archaeologists believe that this tomb is associated with the end of the existence of the fortified settlement. Only a part of it has been excavated, the work will continue. Archaeologists found a skeleton of a man, but the decorations were for a woman.
Two other treasures date back to the beginnings of the castle in Czermno. Dozens of ornaments, including a large lunula (crescent-shaped pendant) and large, hollow beads date back to the second half of the tenth century. Among them, archaeologists found destroyed elements or semi-finished jewellery. They were hidden in the ground.
96 ornaments were found in the woods, where someone buried them in a clay pot. There were silver lunulae, large beads, earrings, and smaller beads of carnelian and glass. These products come from the ninth and tenth centuries, they were hidden around the year 970. The project involves scientists from Poland, Germany, Ukraine, Belarus, Slovenia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.
Technology of high birefringent microstructured polymer optical fibers
Gold Medal with Distinction at the 63rd World Trade Fair of Invention, Research and New Techniques BRUSSELS INNOVA in Brussels.
Scientists from the UMCS Optical Fiber Technology Laboratory developed a technology for producing microstructural polymer optical fibers, which are considered much more flexible than quartz fibers. Their biocompatibility allows them to be widely used, from medicine to environmental protection.
Ribosomal P protein complex from Plasmodium falciparum as an antigen in vaccines against malaria
The 3rd place in the “Fokus Lens 2011” plebiscite for research on malaria antigen. The 3rd place in the category „Scientific discovery of the year ” (2011) in the National Geographic Traveler plebiscite for research on malaria antigen
The team of prof. Nikodem Grankowski from the UMCS Institute of Microbiology and Biotechnology created the antigen, i.e., an essential component that can be used to produce a vaccine against malaria. The antigen developed by scientists from Lublin may act on any developmental stage of malarial parasites, and as such, when used in a vaccine, it would give a chance to obtain full immunity in humans.
Bronze Medal at the 43rd International Exhibition of Inventions, Modern Technology and Products – Geneva Inventions 2015. The main prize in the 5th edition of the national competition “Student-Inventor”.
Łukasz Sadurski, a student of the Lublin University of Technology, is a co-creator of the capstan. The work on the modernization of the invention lasted three years and was the subject of engineering work. A capstan is a mooring winch used on yachts for the so-called picking ropes, chains and mooring. Innovative design is the combination of a classic winch mechanism with a rope locking system via a safety clutch. The improved capstan can be used in virtually any yacht, both in small sports vessels and those waiting for long ocean voyages.
Method and device for measuring the sliding friction of fiber optic cables during assembly
Gold Medal with Distinction at the 63rd World Trade Fair of Invention, Research and New Techniques BRUSSELS INNOVA in Brussels
Prof. Tomasz Klepka and his team are developing a device prototype for measuring the sliding friction of fiber optic cables. It will allow you to compare different fiber optic cables. Based on the obtained results, Prof. Tomasz Klepka and his team will select the properties of cable sheathing layers for specific applications. The new solution of friction measurements for the sliding friction coefficient innerducts housing fibre optic micro cables, catheters, cannulas are presented. The measurements and studies will significantly contribute to broaden the scope of studies in tribology for elements of various designs and materials undergoing sliding interactions. Moreover, the device enables analyses of diverse cross sections and dimensions to be carried out, all at one testing station and retooling time of 10 minutes. The invention allows scientific research to be carried out, novel materials to be designed and new materials for sliding layers to be effectively selected. The application of the invention reduces costs of analyses of innovative products by 55%-70% in relation to those used at present.
A method of forming porous polymer compositions with iron and copper
Silver Medal at the 63rd World Fair of Invention, Research and New Techniques BRUSSELS INNOVA in Brussels, award received during the 10th edition of the Bene Meritus Terrae Lublinensi Gala.
Dr. Eng. Aneta Tor-Świątek and dr inż. Tomasz Garbacz from the Department of Polymer Processes at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of the Lublin University of Technology created a plastic mass, which is lighter than plastic and has a porous structure. Thanks to the fragments of copper and iron embedded in it, it has new properties that have not been obtained so far in plastics, such as magnetic, electrical, and thermal conductivity, which may be necessary, among others, in electronics, electrical engineering, or wastewater treatment.
In the frame of this work modification of PVC with the iron and copper powder in amount of 0, 1.5 and 3% and blowing agent in amount of 0, 0.5, 1% was done. Extrudates in a form of pipe were tested to determine density, porosity, maximum tensile stress, stress at break, modulus of elasticity and elongation with break. The samples were also observed in a microscope. The studies have shown significant influence of the added components on the properties tested.
Human testing of a composite, which replaces bone defects
Testing has begun of applications in humans of a composite that can replace bone defects. The material called “artificial bone”, developed by researchers at the Medical University of Lublin, has already passed animal testing. Study will include 25 patients. Composite developed by Lublin scientists is implanted to persons who had jaw cysts surgically removed, and the resulting loss filled with the composite. Patients will be systematically examined, doctors and scientists will check whether the material is accepted by the human body and serves its purpose. Prof. Ginalska anticipates that after about two years it will be possible to determine whether the composite is safe. If the experiment is successful, clinical trials will begin in several centres in Poland. Prof. Ginalska emphasised that although many bone replacement materials are available on the market, the unique feature of the composite invented by scientists in Lublin is in that it is very yielding, easy to implant, and the surgeon can easily fit it to the shape of the bone defect. The composite is developed on the basis of hydroxyapatite granules, produced at the Institute of Materials Science and Ceramics, AGH University of Technology. Hydroxyapatite is a mineral which is a component of many skeletons such as corals, human or animal bones. Lublin biotechnologists and biochemists combined the inorganic compound hydroxyapatite with organic sugar polymer. The composite has a structure similar to bone, in a dry state it is hard, and after soaking it becomes soft and yielding. After implantation, the organic material (sugar polymer) is decomposed in the body, and its place is inhabited by the bone cells (osteoblasts). Studies have shown that the material is nontoxic and does not have any allergenic properties. Dental surgery composite implants to animals at the Department of Animal Surgery, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Life Sciences in Lublin yielded successful results. “Animals accepted this material very well. Composite invented by Lublin scientists could be used e.g. in the correction of bone defects in humans, for example after the removal of bone fragments occupied by tumors cells, or as dental socket filling material, in which tooth implants can be embedded. Prof. Ginalska reserves that the possible implementation of this material for the production is still a long way ahead and requires many years of research. The search for a substance that would give the possibility to modify hydroxyapatite and increase the plasticity of the material have continued for about 10 years. Development of the composite took two years. The material they developed has already been covered by patent protection in Poland, there are efforts obtain a European patent. For the invention of the composite Prof. Ginalska received the award in the competition “Woman Inventor 2011″organized by the Polish Federation of Engineering Associations, the Polish Patent Office, the Association of Polish Inventors and Rationalizers, and “Przegląd Techniczny” magazine. PAP – Science in Poland.
A novel method of producing ectoine
Method for the production of ectoine, substance with protective action used in medical and cosmetic industry, has been developed and patented by researchers at the Catholic University of Lublin. They used bacteria colonizing barren sedimentary rocks from Bogdanka coal mine (Lublin region).
A novel method of producing ectoine has been developed by a team of scientists from the Department of Biochemistry and Environmental Chemistry of the Catholic University of Lublin under the supervision of Prof. Zofia Stępniewska. The patented invention has been announced by the university press office.
Ectoine is an amino acid which has protective functions in the body, including as a stabilizer of enzymes, nucleic acids, DNA-protein complexes and whole cells. It provides protection to cells against various external factors such as UV radiation, but also prevents the aging process and facilitates the normal development of cells.
In medicine ectoine is used, for example, with the radio and chemotherapy. It also increases the immune response to HIV. According to some studies, it may also be helpful in the treatment of Alzheimer\’s disease. In cosmetics, it is used in moisturizing and anti-wrinkle creams.
Ectoine for industrial purposes is currently obtained in the process of chemical synthesis. The process is expensive, it is based on expensive substances (L-amino acids), requires a complicated synthesis technology consisting of 22 stages, and then purifying the product. The price of 1 g of ectoine reaches about 18 dollars.
In nature, ectoine is produced by microorganisms living in extremely adverse conditions such as geysers and salt lakes.
In the coal mine Bogdanka, Lublin scientists studied methanotrophic bacteria colonizing the sedimentary rocks occurring near coal, and their behavior in the local environment.
Scientists have developed a method of obtaining ectoine produced by methanotrophic bacteria. In this production process, cultured bacteria are subjected to various factors and then the valuable amino acid they produce is isolated. Ectoine production method using methanotrophic bacteria should be cheaper (about 2.5 thousand. zlotys per kg) than obtaining ectoine in chemical synthesis. According to Stępniewska, ectoine obtained in natural processes also has a high level of purity.
Research on oat resistant to fungi
Grant of over one million zlotys in the competition of the National Center for Research and Development
Dr. Sylwia Okoń from the University of Life Sciences in Lublin researches the identification of new, useful genes for resistance to fungal diseases in oats. It also develops DNA markers to identify them. Similar research is being conducted in only one more place in Europe – in Germany. The improved grain is to be not only healthier but also more ecological. Dr. Sylwia Okoń wants to eliminate two types of fungi that attack oats: powdery mildew and corona rust, which in some years reduce the yield by up to half. The assessment of the effectiveness of resistance sources to fungal diseases is a very important issue allowing to determine the possibilities of effective use of new resistance genes in breeding programs. In the present work, the effectiveness of new resistance sources to oat powdery mildew identified in wild A. sterilis species was determined. The level of effectiveness was assessed based on host–pathogen tests. A set of 50 Blumeria graminis f. sp. avenae isolates was selected for these tests, which allowed to analyze the effectiveness in different geographical conditions. The isolates were collected in 2010–2017, which allowed to observe changes in the effectiveness of new resistance sources in recent years. Furthermore, based on the results, we postulated the presence of new resistance genes in A. sterilis genotypes identified as resistant. Two of the seven tested genotypes were characterized by a high level of resistance against the used isolates. Moreover, the patterns of infection indicated that the resistance identified in these genotypes was conditioned by a new powdery mildew resistance
Development of photovoltaic bus structure technologies
Since 2013, buses equipped with experimental systems have been running on the streets of Lublin.
Prof. Mirosław Wendeker from the Department of Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics and Aviation Propulsion, Lublin University of Technology, has developed a technology that uses photovoltaic cells to generate electricity in city buses. According to the calculations of the creator of the idea, the cells will cover from 15 to 25% of the bus’s electricity demand. It is estimated that a bus with such cells will use 4.5 to 5% less fuel per year, which will give approx. 10 thousand. PLN savings on one vehicle. Measurements in this area are currently carried out.
The solution of the scientists from the Department of Electrical Drives and Machines of Lublin University of Technology regarding the power electronic system of the MV/LV transformer with a kinetic energy storage device was awarded a gold medal. The authors of the invention are: Dariusz Zieliński, BEng, PhD, Karol Fatyga, BEng, MSc, Łukasz Kwaśny, BEng, MSc and Bartłomiej Stefańczak, BEng, MSc.
– This a breakthrough idea because it can replace classic energy transformers used to power single-family houses or production plants, extending their functionality with active power flow control or local energy storage. On a national scale, it is over 100,000 devices – says Dr. Eng. Dariusz Zieliński from the Department of Electrical Drives and Machines.
The event was organized by the Association of Polish Inventors and Rationalizers in cooperation with the Polish Patent Office and the International Federation of Inventors’ Association (IFIA).
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