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Thoughts from the President...

With the end of the current pandemic in sight, we are anxiously looking for normality (whatever that may mean) and praying for the coronavirus to disappear from our lives.

Classes will again be presencial and offices and corridors will again be wake up and teeming with teachers and students running to and from classrooms and labs.

The 'new normality' is likely to be slightly different from the old one. For starters, online meetings will tend to be more frequent and evolving far less travelling time. I do agree that face-to-face meetings are important in certain cases, but may often be substituted by online meetings with convenience and time savings.

Administrative procedures, created during the pandemic, such as official document signatures and remote online presence in official meetings are likely to continue, at least, in a university environment where these are welcome time savers.

Online shopping, namely, meals, became quite popular thanks to swarms of bicycles or, less frequently, motorbike-based delivery boys and girls. During the curfew, they became indispensable, not only for the elderly and the disabled, and convenient for many. After the confinement periods, convenience justifies this service that is likely to remain in our cities.

 
 
Carlos Salema
Our highlights this month
We caught up with Ph.D. students Mariana Abreu and Ana Sofia Carmo, who told us about the IT project PreEpiSeizures - a novel solution that uses mobile and wearable technologies to help patients who suffer from epilepsy. The project brings together a multidisciplinary team from IT and health professionals from Hospital de Santa Maria and Hospital de Egas Moniz.
watch the video >>
Carlos Salema Awarded the Medal of Scientific Merit

Carlos Salema, member of the Board of Directors of Instituto de Telecomunicações (IT) and Past President of IT, was awarded the Medal of Scientific Merit from the Ministry of Science, Technology and High Education of Portugal.
                          
 
"This experiment allowed us to evaluate in a realistic scenario a secure quantum communication system that we have been developing in the laboratory", says Armando Nolasco Pinto. 

 

“ScientISST Notebooks”, co-authored by Joana Pinto, Hugo Silva, and Ana Fred, has been distinguished at the 4th edition of CISPEE 2021.
 
 
INBIO Ciência Viva Summer School 2021 Concludes with a Beat
 
Ciência Viva “Introduction to Biosignals (INBIO)” Summer School welcomed a group of highly motivated high school students between July 19th and 23rd at IT.

Ph.D. Student of Electrical Engineering at the University of Aveiro, supervised by Nuno Borges Carvalho, wins 3rd place in Microwave Week Atlanta 2021's Three Minute Thesis (3MT).
 
5Growth project wins the “Best Booth Award" at EuCNC
 
The H2020 5Growth project has received the “Best Booth Award” at this year’s EuCNC virtual conference, for its booth elaborated under the theme “Demonstrating 5G in vertical industries from 5Growth”.
 
 
Solar photovoltaics using optically active organic semiconductors (carbon-based materials which can absorb light and generate and transport electric charges) are today considered among the most promising clean and renewable energy technologies. This is because of their unique characteristics which enable that semi-transparent, lightweight, and mechanically flexible devices can be fabricated using low-cost techniques. The SUPRASOL project, which brings together research teams from IT and IST-ID, aims at preparing new organic semiconductors to perform as the photo-active layer in OPV devices.
keep reading >>
 SPIN-OFF STORIES 
In this new segment, we track down the companies that today tell some of IT's biggest success stories, and we chat with the people behind them to learn more about the unique businesses that are born when research meets entrepreneurship.
Noted as one of Portugal’s top 25 start-ups, PICadvanced has solved many complex problems through optics, from design and development to packaging and testing, that are used in the electrotechnology, telecommunications, and biomedicine industries. In this interview, co-founder António Teixeira takes us through PICa’s 7-year journey and its role in building the future ecosystem based on integrated photonics.
read the interview >>
New Books!
 
 IT Scientific Productivity Prize 

Optical Fiber Spirometer for Pulmonary Health Assessment, by Catarina Nepomuceno, Fátima Domingues & Paulo Antunes (2021)

This book proposes the implementation of two solutions for the diagnosis and monitoring of pulmonary disorder, based on different optical fiber technology: fiber Bragg gratings and Fabry-Perot interferometers.
 IT Scientific Productivity Prize 

Sensores e Atuadores (Sensores and Actuators), by Francisco Alegria (2021)

Humans are surrounded by technology. Actuators and sensors are devices that enable the interaction between these systems and the physical world. This book explains the operation of numerous devices of this type, based on the physical or chemical principle used, representing a different approach from other books on this topic.
 
Don't miss our upcoming events...
 
 WEBINAR 
13th October 2021 | 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM (WEST)
5G - Technology Updates & Opportunities
Meet leading experts working on developing new 5G networks, platforms, and applications, as well as esteemed researchers and academia representatives who are ready to share their knowledge and answer all your questions. The webinar is organized by the leading team of the project 5GASP, next 13th October 2021. The participation is free, yet is subjected to prior registration.
 
more events >>
#PhDshostedbyIT
 
Celestino Martins
Low Complexity Digital Signal Processing Techniques for Coherent Optical Systems 

PhD in Telecommunications by the University of Aveiro within the MAP-Tele Doctoral Program, December 2020, supervised by Armando Pinto (IT/UA) and Fernando Guiomar (IT/UA). The thesis proposed low-complexity digital signal processing techniques for coherent optical transmission systems targeting an efficient hardware implementation, in terms of chip area and power consumption. Proposed techniques are experimentally demonstrated in offline and in real-time operation.
Celestino is currently a Research Engineer at Huawei Technologies France, in Paris.

 

Fábio Garrudo
Novel electrospun scaffolds for neural stem cell differentiation under electrical stimulation 
 
PhD in Bioengineering by Instituto Superior Técnico within the doctoral program in “Bioengineering – Cell Therapies and Regenerative medicine”, January 2021, supervised by Robert Linhardt (RPI), Frederico Ferreira (IST) and Jorge Morgado (IT/IST). The thesis evaluated the use of several electrically conductive materials for the construction of structured substrates for biological cell culture.
Fábio is currently a researcher at Instituto Superior Técnico, within the project Stimuli2BioScaffold.
 
 
Erik Farias da Silva
Energy Harvesting with Planar Printed Rectennas and Frequency Selective Surfaces
 
PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering by the Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) from the University of Lisboa (UL), December 2020, supervised by Custódio Peixeiro (IT/IST-UL) and Alfredo Gomes (IFPB). 
The thesis proposed a fast and accurate method for design rectifying antennas (rectennas), the method was applied to design a single rectenna and an innovative planar structure that integrates a frequency selective surface and a rectenna array. 
Erik is currently a full professor in the Instituto Federal da Paraíba (IFPB), in Brazil.
#WhereAreYouNow
 
Catarina Runa

My journey at IT started in 2011, when I joined the Porto Interactive Center (PIC) team as a Computer Vision researcher. Just one year later, Verónica Orvalho challenged me into doing a PhD in Computer Science, focused on the development of Machine Learning methods for real-time facial recognition and 3D facial animation. I can proudly say that I was part of the very primordial discussions around Didimo and couldn't be more impressed by the incredible work that Verónica and team did to make all those dreams come true.

After finishing my PhD, I joined
Deloitte, where I worked as an Artificial Intelligence lead specialist for 3 years. Later, I moved to London, UK to join Square Enix as a Data Analytics and Data Science Manager. Around 2 years ago, I decided to get back to financial services and joined the Data Science team of Lloyds Banking Group as a Senior Manager, where I lead a team of around 30 people, including data scientists and data engineers.

Since I arrived in London, I've been focused on transforming how companies use data and Machine Learning for process automation and decision-making. This not only involves consolidation of data warehouses for data storage, building data pipelines for data processing and feature engineering, developing prediction models; but also, software development and migrations to public cloud required to interface our Machine Learning outputs, automating model re-training/data and models' controls, plus making all of this software work at scale from a computational perspective.

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