Knowledge in the Age of Industry 4.0

The Sofia Tech Park Laboratory is a meeting place for science and business

Knowledge in the Age of Industry 4.0

The Lab complex operates to support the business

Снимка: EconomyMagazine/Krassimir Svrakov

452 ~ 4 мин. четене
Автор: Tatyana Yavasheva

When business and science unite forces, a high value-added economy is created. It was precisely for this purpose that the first science and technology park in Bulgaria - Sofia Tech Park was established. Its laboratory complex includes 11 laboratories with state-of-the-art equipment and world-class specialists. We present to you four of its laboratories.

The 3D Lab for Creativity and Rapid Prototyping of New Products helps industrial companies that are trying to establish a leadership position on the market. The range of opportunities is wide - from industry to medicine and entertainment. "In the process of innovation, there is a critical moment in the middle of the road from the verified idea to the industrial realization of the product, known as the Valley of Death. The main objective of the lab is to help businesses jump over this “gap” more easily. Making the pilot products is a huge difficulty for the companies", says the head of the laboratory Prof. Georgi Todorov, Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical and Manufacturing Technology of the Technical University in Sofia. The lab assists in creating prototypes and then making small quantities of the product to test the market. Metal, plastic and ceramics - that is what the 3D printers work with here. They can either add or take out material. They can also make casting moulds, produce specific components for the energy industry to replace defective parts. They also have measurement capabilities – for example of modules for the automotive industry. Medical implants have been made here, and, thus, a human life has been saved.


Speaking of the future and smart cities, we hardly realize that huge computational power will be required then. Many areas are users of high-performance computing, including transportation. Air Traffic Control is the first customer of

The Laboratory for High-Performance Computing


It could make weather forecasts for airports across the entire region. The electric vehicle charging stations can be monitored through the laboratory's computer for high-speed computing. All transportation can also be managed through such systems, explains Prof. Anna Proykova, head of the unit and lecturer at Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski ", Department of Atomic Physics at the Faculty of Physics. She adds that Bulgaria is a leader in computing equipment on the Balkans. Companies insist on keeping everyone from having access to their information and their data in the machine is reliably protected, so that no one can break through it, and measures have been taken in that direction, Prof. Proykova assures. The laboratory team consists of outstanding specialists. Hospitals, which will offer personalized medicine and remote surgeries, could be a customer of the laboratory. Financial and consulting houses also need quick calculations. The computing power available can be useful in managing catalogues that allow personalized orders.

The MicroNanoLab

aims to create, maintain and develop an environment for applied and innovative scientific research. It offers testing, analysis, design and prototyping in the field of printed circuit boards, micro and nanoelectronics, bioelectronic applications and nanotechnology. The lab helps develop high-tech and affordable methods and tools for designing, modelling and testing. Here you will find people with knowledge, experience and expertise to help you identify and analyse the causes of failures and defects in electronic devices, as well as optimize and develop new products, devices and systems. "We have the ambition to become a European centre for designing integrated circuits with partners from Europe and the rest of the world", concludes Prof. Georgi Angelov, head of MINOlab, as well as of the Department of Microelectronics at the Technical University of Sofia. The lab provides access to factories in Europe which could fulfil the projects.

 The 3D Lab for Creativity aids the innovative business to jump over the gap between the good idea and the market, says Prof. Georgi Todorov

An important unit is the modern

Laboratory of Virtual and Augmented Reality

With the help of augmented reality, you can train your workers to protect them from work-related accidents. This technology offers facilitation of the work processes - for example, managing your inventory. Using virtual and augmented reality, you can make marketing events spectacular and memorable. Galleries will attract strong interest through augmented reality exhibitions if they add value to some of their displays. Through augmented reality, museums come alive and become attractive to more people, says Dimo ​​Chotrev, the IT specialist of the laboratory. In the "Etara" open-air museum, the laboratory has implemented a project, in which augmented reality allows tourists to see through their smartphones how people once did tahan there. The lab has also implemented a virtual reality project to represent different types of crafts, each of them having its own "room". The technology allows you to "touch" the objects. For example, you can virtually throw, move from room to room through a virtual menu. You can apply virtual and augmented reality when implementing innovative solutions and test them at a very early stage of their development.

The laboratories at Sofia Tech Park are

the technological crossroads

between business and scientific research units. Nowadays, technology changes very quickly, every 3-4 months something new comes out, but the specialists working here are up-to-date with the latest trends, claims Prof. Marin Hristov, Chairman of the Management Board of the Research and Development Association.

"Our laboratories provide businesses with opportunities to create or develop their products and services. Our doors are open also to university and PhD students, for training and development of scientific projects and research. Our development teams are primarily business oriented. The incredible infrastructure and the brilliant Bulgarian researchers are the advantages that the park brings to our environment of innovations", says Todor Mladenov, Sofia Tech Executive Director.

Come, see and try!

Technology is changing very fast, but the specialists here are up-to-date with the latest trends, says Prof. Marin Hristov

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