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The University’s robotics labs unique in Sweden


“In our automation labs, engineering students can test their simulations of a convoy of driverless vehicles, while the industry can test what automation can do for them,” says Niclas Björsell, reader in electronics at University of Gävle.

The student Shaikh Masud Rana and Niclas Björsell

The student Shaikh Masud Rana and Niclas Björsell

While many other higher education institutions are moving more and more towards mere simulations, University of Gävle has chosen a different path. Here, engineering programmes contain many laboratory elements. This is a conscious choice made partly because the University is strong in measurement technology and partly because there is a demand for testing simulations against reality.

“We are keeping our labs and we are almost the only ones in Sweden doing that. Our labs are fantastic resources both when it comes to education and to demonstrate industrial applications,” Niclas Björsell says.

Unique in transferring knowledge to the industry

Automated vehicles in convoys make is possible to exemplify how the control systems used in the industry can be made secure, even though radio communications are exposed to various types of disturbances and external factors.

In industry, it can also be about machine-machine collaboration, for example a robot that is to hand over to the next system in the process, a self-driving truck, or about production and maintenance planning.

“It's a great way to demonstrate industrial applications, which makes it widely appreciated by companies, and we are unique in transferring this type of knowledge to industrial processes.

“Because we are good at automation here in Sweden, we have been successful in bringing production home to Sweden. If we are to have any industry in Sweden, this is necessary; it’s our only chance,” Niclas Björsell says.

"The fun factor"

Amir Dadash wrote his degree project at University of Gävle and is now a doctoral student here. He chose Gävle as it was the only university in Sweden specializing in this field in automation that offered lab opportunities. As he had previously worked in automation, he could determine that the academic staff at Gävle is strong in the field and that this is a well-designed programme.

Amir Dadash

Amir Dadash

“The importance of ‘the fun factor’ should not be overlooked. The look in the students’ eyes tells us that they are having fun. To see their ideas turned into reality is so inspiring for learning,” says Amir Dadash.

Amir describes their collaborations with industries around Gävle; the feedback they receive is enthusiastic and very positive as a rule since the industry often comes up with a specific problem that they want to see an exact solution to, and these test beds can provide them with one.

“It feels as if I would like to stay and work in Gävle. There’s potential and there’s ability here, and maybe I will combine teaching and research,” says Amir Dadash.

The test lab project has been running for two years and is founded by Region Gävleborg, the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth and the Ljungberg Foundation, with approximately SEK 6 million over three years.


Niclas Björsell, reader in electronics at the University of Gävle
Phone: 026-64 87 95, 076-855 57 88
E-mail: niclas.bjorsell@hig.se

Amir Dadash, PhD student at University of Gävle
Phone: 070- 045 59 77
E- mail: Amirhossein.Hosseinzadeh.Dadash@hig.se

Text: Douglas Öhrbom
Photo testlab: Britt Mattsson
Photo Amir Dadash: Private

Published by: Douglas Öhrbom Page responsible: Anders Munck Updated: 2021-04-26
Högskolan i Gävle
Box 801 76 GÄVLE
026-64 85 00 (växel)