Dr. Alan Davy, Research Unit Manager, Emerging Networks Lab, TSSG, Waterford Institute of Technology, recently organised the 1st Workshop on Molecular Communications at Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK on April 11th and 12th 2016.
The event saw 37 of the highest respected scientists in the field of molecular communications come together to discuss this emerging field of study. Molecular Communications is the use of molecules to exchange information between biological and non-biological entities at the nanoscale. IEEE named it in the top ten hot topics in communications technology in 2015
When we talk about nanoscale, think of how every living cell within the human body communicates information between each other to regulate behaviour. Cells use the exchange of molecules such as Calcium to communicate between each other. In the future man-made nanoscale machines will use molecular communications much in the same way cells do, to communicate and coordinate tasks. These machines can operate within the human body to perform various tasks, such as precision drug delivery, auto immune system support, cancer cell detection and removal, to name a few.
Dr. Davy and the community of researchers involved are working hard to understand how scientists can research and develop this technology for future applications. The EU Horizon 2020 Future and Emerging Technology project CIRCLE, which aims to coordinate European research on molecular communications, sponsored the workshop. The aim of the workshop was to firstly identify education opportunities for young researchers wishing to study this discipline, secondly discuss a research roadmap for the community to focus on the most important questions to be resolved and finally discuss how industry can get involved in the research.