ATU researchers join prestigious biorbic bioeconomy SFI research centre

Wednesday, July 20, 2022 Press Office
Press Releases
ATU researchers join prestigious biorbic bioeconomy SFI research centre

Inaugural meeting of new research group held in ATU Mountbellew in June


Four researchers from Atlantic Technological University (ATU) have joined the prestigious BiOrbic, Bioeconomy SFI Research Centre, a national collaboration of over 100+ researchers focused on the development of a sustainable circular bioeconomy; Professor Graham Heaslip, Head of the School of Engineering, ATU Operations and Supply Chain Research (OSCAR) group, ATU Galway-Mayo; Dr Edna Curley, Head of Centre, ATU Mountbellew; Dr James Moran, ATU Marine and Freshwater Research Centre (MFRC) and School of Science & Computing, and Dr Trevor Clohessy, School of Engineering, ATU Operations and Supply Chain Research (OSCAR) group, Galway-Mayo.

The new collaboration was formally announced at a reception in ATU Mountbellew on Friday, 18 June, 2022, hosted by Dr Edna Curley, Head of Centre, ATU Mountbellew and Dr Eoin Cullina, ATU Head of Research, Galway -Mayo, attended by Professor Kevin O’Connor, Director of BiOrbic and Derek O’Brien, Executive Director of BiOrbic, academics and researchers.

Hosted by UCD, BiOrbic researchers work on selectively separating and extracting valued compounds from renewable materials, converting those resources into novel bio-based products and processes, and delivering market and industry-scalable sustainable resources. Academic partners include University College Dublin, TEAGASC, Trinity College Dublin, National University of Ireland Galway, University of Limerick, Munster Technological University and now Atlantic Technological University.

ATU researchers will contribute to projects in a variety of fields: Professor Graham Heaslip on “Creating a sustainable and efficient supply chain, using digital twin technology to enhance quality, sustainability, and traceability from farmers to end customers”;  Dr Edna Curley on “sustainable production in agriculture, encompassing soil health, agronomy, animal health and welfare, agroforestry, remote sensing and GPS and bioremediation”;  Dr James Moran on “understanding ecosystem health and developing integrated land use strategies to sustain and enhance the provision of multiple ecosystem services (e.g. food, fiber, carbon storage, water regulation, space for nature) across a range of land use intensities”;  and Dr Trevor Clohessy on Industry 4.0 supply chain blockchain applications”.

Professor Kevin O’Connor, Director of BiOrbic, says “We are delighted to be partnering with ATU.  BiOrbic is focused on addressing global challenges that are locally relevant.  The west and northwest regions are vital to scaling Ireland’s circular bioeconomy and we are excited to work with ATU’s researchers in key areas that will contribute to a sustainable future.

Professor Graham Heaslip, Head of School of Engineering, ATU Galway, says “Joining BiOrbic is a fantastic development, not alone for the individual researchers but for the university. The researchers joining BiOrbic are addressing societal challenges, particularly the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Focusing our research on the circular bioeconomy offers the opportunity to transform our land, food, health, and industrial systems.”

Dr Eoin Cullina, Head of Research, ATU Galway-Mayo, says: “In joining with SFI BiOrbic, ATU researchers now enjoy access to a thriving research community and opportunities to collaborate with key stakeholders within the  bioeconomy. BiOrbic have set an incredibly high benchmark for research excellence and impact. We greatly look forward to joining them in the delivery of their mission.”

For information about ATU Research, see:


For information about BiORbic, see:


Regina Daly, Atlantic TU Communications

 +353 (0)91 742826 Mob: +353 (0)879618355


Jessica Chambers (she/her), BiOrbic Communications 

BiOrbic, Bioeconomy SFI Research Centre

Mob: +353