Rewarded Take-off grants for Amsterdam projects

December 16, 2019

Various projects within the Amsterdam knowledge institutions have received funding through a Take-off program from NWO. With this funding, they can further investigate the market opportunities for their products through a feasibility study or with an early stage route.

Projects Feasibility studies (phase 1)

A Freemium model for Open Online Research: from tests to real life application

Project leader: dr. C. Bröer – University of Amsterdam
Citizens are increasingly becoming an active part of scientific research. We call this citizen science. With this project we make an innovative contribution to this development. We offer a free tool for citizen science and test the feasibility of commercial services for this platform. Our own citizen science tool ‘Open Online Research’ focuses on two aspects of citizen science that have not been developed so far: promoting direct collaboration between citizens and working with qualitative data. The Take-off budget will be used to pilot the alpha-version of the platform in real-life academic and political contexts.

Projects Early stage route (phase 2)

Strike-f(x): The intelligent boxing bag

Project leader: Nilas van Woersem, Sports-f(x). Participating institute: Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Strike-f(x) is a free-hanging, intelligent boxing bag that measures impact force of punch and kick actions in an accurate way at any location. The measurement system is housed inside the boxing bag, meaning that the ‘feel’ and the use of the system is no different than regular boxing bags but the Strike-f(x) can provide real-time feedback about pertinent workout performance measures such as the impact force of striking actions, the volume and intensity of a workout, and calories burnt, allowing leisure as well as elite athletes to keep track of their performance and progress. The detailed real-time cardio feedback is immediately shown on a screen next to the bag. The Strike-f(x) boxing bag is ideally suited for gamifying workouts.
The Take-off will be used to upgrade to a new software that is able to better store the results, to make leader boards and to add new workout measures like striking location, calories burnt, etc. After this, gamified workouts will be designed to give the user a unique workout experience. Simultaneously, the production will be outsourced to produce on larger scale and to make the production process more cost-effective. This work allows us to sell a fully commercialized and profitable product within one year. Read more about Strike-f(x)

From kg to ton scale: Preparing the SusPhos technology for commercialization

Project leader: M.A. de Boer, SusPhos BV, participating institute: University of Amsterdam
SusPhos is developing technology that aims to realize a circular phosphate economy by processing phosphate-containing waste into high quality products such as fertilizer and flame-retardants. The Take-off is being used to get the SusPhos technology ready for commercialization, for scale-up of the SusPhos process, in particular the realization of the pilot. Read more about SusPhos

Light Emitting Silicon Quantum Dots

Project leader: R. van Kleef, SpectriS-dot b.v., participating institute: University of Amsterdam
SpectricS-dot makes quantum dots from sand. Their silicon quantum turn sand in to light and have many advantages: stable, high absorption, low energy and non-toxic. The business opportunity is to replace light emitting elements in lighting (LED) and displays (TV).  The Take-off 2 will be used to improve the product properties (optical, yield etc.) and thus produce drop-inn material for the industry to use. REad more about SpectriS-dot

About Take-off

Take-off, the funding instrument available to all scientific fields, encourages activity and entrepreneurship within the Dutch knowledge institutions. With this instrument, academic entrepreneurs – but also starters from universities of applied sciences (HBO) and starters who are making use of knowledge from institutions for Applied Research Organisations (TO2) – can bring their innovative research results to the market. Take-off is one of the instruments for knowledge utilisation which NWO implements together with ZonMw (The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development).

Feasibility study (phase 1)
For a feasibility study, researchers within Take-off can request financing of EUR 20,000 to a maximum of EUR 40,000. This loan can be used to perform a feasibility study of the commercial application of innovative ideas and the start of activity on the basis of knowledge innovations from knowledge institutions. A feasibility study leads to a report which includes the possibilities of a start-up.

Early stage route (phase 2)
With Take-off early stage routes, companies (start-ups) which have just been initiated by researchers or entrepreneurs can request a loan of 50,000 euros to a maximum of 250,000 euros. The loan is utilised for the early stage route with a maximum term of two (2) years. Interest is owed on the loan, which must be repaid within eight (8) years. An early stage route consists of the steps which are necessary to make a knowledge innovation commercially viable. This could be a production process, market research, or a marketing or financing plan. This enables the entrepreneur to approach other private or public parties at the end of this route for investment in the continuation of the project.

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