DCU News
News at DCU

DCU partners with PCH to host Ireland’s first dedicated ‘Hardware Hackathon Weekend’

Dublin City University will next month partner with PCH International to host Ireland's first dedicated Hardware Hackathon event.  The unique two-day weekend event will take place at DCU's new Innovation Campus in Glasnevin, bringing  together makers and Internet of Things (IoT) hardware enthusiasts to conceive and prototype connected devices.

The event will take place at DCU’S Innovation Campus from September 12th to 14th, and will have capacity for approx. 100 participants, including entrepreneurs, product designers, mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, developers and makers from across Ireland. Participants will be encouraged to get creative and collaborate from concept stage to final pitch, aiming to develop innovative solutions and potentially create the next big thing in hardware.

The event will begin with attendees proposing ideas and forming teams. Participants can pitch their product ideas to the audience in an effort to attract people to join their teams. The best ideas will be voted on, and participants will then work in their teams over 46 hours, from 7.30pm on Friday evening to their final presentations at 5.30pm on Sunday evening.

PCH are well known for designing custom manufacturing solutions for start-ups and Fortune 500 companies. As well as offering assistance in developing ideas and articulating their vision, PCH – along with DCU Innovation Campus – will provide each team with prototyping  equipment including Arduino and Raspberry Pi kits with IoT connectivity solutions by Spark, Body Trace and MbientLab. Intel will provide Galileo microcontroller boards and Irish company LayerLabz will offer 3D printing solutions.

The participating teams will demonstrate their completed prototypes to a panel of judges, which will include representatives from DCU, PDH, AIB, Cisco, Tyndall Institute, Design Partners and Frontline Ventures.  The Hackathon will conclude with a panel discussion at 7pm on Sunday evening which will focus on how start-ups, multi-nationals and other stakeholders can ensure that Ireland becomes a leading hub for the IoT. The panel will feature respected industry leaders, including:

- Paddy Cosgrave, Founder and CEO, The Summit

- Liam Casey, Founder and CEO, pch

- Philip Moynagh, V.P.Internet of Things Group, Intel Corporation

Ben Harris, CEO Drop

Liam Casey, Founder and CEO of PCH said, "We want to thank DCU for welcoming the Hackathon to the Innovation Campus, and partnering with PCH to make this event a reality.  It's an exciting time for hardware in Ireland; there is phenomenal talent here because of the strong universities and the lure of the great companies who have established a base here." Casey continued, "This weekend will bring together highly driven, entrepreneurial individuals who are coming together to shape their ideas into working prototypes in a fun, supportive and collaborative environment. The teams that form this weekend are potentially the companies and leading hardware brands of tomorrow."

Ronan Furlong, Executive Director of DCU Innovation Campus, said "Dublin is well served with digital incubators and accelerators which support companies who are 'Bits' based. What we lack, however, are equivalent facilities and support for companies who are 'Bits and Atoms' based and this is the market that the Innovation Campus and events like this Hackathon are seeking to serve and catalyse. If Ireland is to be competitive in the IoT sector, we will have to nurture innovators who are looking at the 'Things' part, as well as those looking at the 'Internet' part. We are delighted to partner with PCH for this event- a company well-known globally for supporting hardware start-ups and entrepreneurs."

John O'Dwyer, Head of Technology, Media and Telecoms Banking at AIB, said "Irish tech entrepreneurs are excellent at creating the idea, building products and getting startups going and we firmly believe that supporting the connected hardware sector will lead to job creation, increased exports and contribute to the overall recovery of the Irish economy. As the largest bank provider of seed capital in Ireland, AIB will continue to support this vital sector and its future growth potential"

Further information together with information about how to participate and register is available at: hwhackathon.com

Ticket Prices:
- €25 (€40 after August 20th)
- €15 (Student - Limited number available to valid student ID holders)

The event is a non-profit event with tickets costs going directly towards food and supplies over the weekend. Tickets can be purchased on the event website and by clicking here.

Prizes include:
- €3,000 fund for the continuing development of the winning product, sponsored by AIB.
- An individually tailored "Start Your Own Business course" for the top two teams, sponsored by Dublin City Local Enterprise Board.
- An Intel Galileo board for each member of the winning team.
- Electron engineering consultations with PCH's award winning in-house team.
- Product design consultations with Design Partners.
- Free 3D printing.
- Rasberry Pi and Arduino kits.

About PCH

PCH designs custom manufacturing solutions for startups and Fortune 500 companies. Whether design engineering and development, manufacturing and fulfillment, distribution or retail, PCH takes on the toughest challenges. If it can be imagined, it can be made. At PCH, we make. pchintl.com

About Dublin City University Innovation Campus

The new DCU innovation campus will facilitate a clustering of 'bits' and 'atoms' focused companies and provide them with physical office and prototyping/engineering space, as well as demonstration and commercialisation opportunities, co-located and working in partnership with DCU researchers. Dcu.ie/innovationcampus