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Prof. Dr. Georg Rose (left) and PD Dr. Phillip Berg in Magdeburg's Port of Science (Photo: Jana Dünnhaupt / Uni Magdeburg)
29.06.2023 from 
Research + Transfer
New hub for future ideas

In the future, the "transfer port transPORT" will be a place in the state capital of Magdeburg where the four areas of science, business, living and well-being (4W) will be intensively networked for the first time and will be in close relationship or exchange with each other. Initiated by the STIMULATE research campus at Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg, the transfer of current medical engineering research and new technologies from university science to industry will be organized in the future Magdeburg Transfer Port. Research findings from science can quickly find their way into the regional economy through networking and direct proximity to start-ups and spin-offs. At the same time, specific offers are intended to bring innovations, as well as medical technology challenges, directly into society.

Through the close infrastructural and content-related interlocking of the four areas of science, business, living and well-being, the initiators promise to strengthen Magdeburg as a medical technology location on the basis of previous successful settlement strategies of the research campus as well as new ways of founding companies. The aim is to counteract the shortage of skilled workers and the brain drain, and to offer highly qualified young people long-term career prospects at the location that go beyond their training. "The fact that people develop innovative medical technology here and bring it to market does not preclude the fact that these same people like to relax in nature, are interested in culture, live in a modern environment and want to actively spend their free time" is how PD Dr. Phillip Berg from the STIMULATE research campus at the University of Magdeburg explains the project. The pressing issues of the day, such as sustainability in medical technology, are also intended to make Magdeburg's transPORT attractive to young professionals, opening up new research and business fields for them. "In medicine, far too many disposable products are now used and then disposed of in the trash," says Philipp Berg. So innovative reprocessing technologies need to be developed that allow medical products to be used more than once, he added.

Promoting knowledge exchange with the people

In addition to the scientific and economic activities, residential and commercial infrastructures will be created in the future transfer port, which should have an additional pull effect. The rental areas are to be planned in close coordination with the needs of company partners settling there. Finally, leisure and cultural facilities are to strengthen the attractiveness of the location. On the one hand, these offers are aimed at the employees working on site in the field of medical technology and their families; on the other hand, they are intended to increase the visibility of the transfer port far beyond the district boundaries. In order to strengthen the social acceptance of research projects and medical technology products, new formats of science communication will be developed and offered within the framework of transPORT, which will reach researchers as well as citizens, says Dr. Phillip Berg. "The annual 'Long Night of Science,' which has the population flocking to the Port of Science in droves across generations, is a prime example of what vibrant life coupled with knowledge exchange can look like here. A bridge over the harbor basin, a water bus on the Elbe, or even rowing and canoeing in the historic harbor basin are conceivable," Berg continues.

Following the successful application in the federal funding program "T!Raum - TransferRäume für die Zukunft der Region" (T!Space - Transfer Spaces for the Future of the Region), the initiators around the spokesperson of the research campus and holder of the Chair of Medical Telematics and Medical Technology at the University of Magdeburg, Prof. Georg Rose, have up to 2 million euros per year from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research at their disposal for the implementation of the plans in a maximum of 9 years. The stakeholders of the STIMULATE research campus and the University of Magdeburg are cooperating on the transPORT project with, among others, the MRI developer Neoscan Solutions; the company Visualimpression as developer of augmented reality and virtual reality applications, the real estate company GETEC-PM as well as Agromex and with the Fraunhofer Institute for Factory Operation and Automation IFF and the state capital Magdeburg.

"The Port of Science Magdeburg, the transfer space of the future, needs completely new transfer instruments in the 21st century in addition to the tried and true ones," says STIMULATE spokesman Georg Rose and announces a digital twin for the Port of Science as a meeting place: "Virtual visits to the transPORT will be possible from anywhere in the world," he says. "It will be natural to quickly knock on a company's door digitally to visit colleagues; to visit a lab or test a product."