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Two new ERC - Proof of Concept Grants to SISSA mathLab

07 February 2022

Two SISSA mathLab’s projects have just been granted a prestigious "ERC-Proof of Concept Grant”. Worth €150,000 each, this top-up funding will help them bridge the gap between the results of their pioneering research and the early phases of its commercialisation. The grants are part of the EU's research and innovation programme, Horizon Europe.  

The two projects are ARGOS, led by Gianluigi Rozza, and “Stripe-o-Morph”, led by Antonio De Simone.


“ARGOS” will be a computational web-server for real time computing based on parametric reduced order modelling techniques developed during the consolidator grant AROMA-CFD. One of the important focus will be on computational fluid dynamics. Offline-Online real time computing will contribute to exploit computational sciences in fields and places where at the moment there is still little development. ARGOS will provide novel computational technologies to foster important potential of scientific computing in industry, medicine, environmental sciences. The topic is strongly connected and integrated with Industry 4.0 as well as with digital twins developments.

An 18-month project, ARGOS will be managed by mathLab’s team. In particular, Nicola Demo will be in charge of the technological development and Andrea Martini will take care of the market valorization of the initiative. The scientific support will be provided by Giovanni Stabile, Michele Girfoglio, Martin Hess, Martina Teruzzi. National and international organizations will be involved, too. “ARGOS” is linked to the ERC Grant AROMA-CFD.

About Stripe-o-Morph

“Stripe-o-Morph - Morphing tubular structures for adaptive biomedical devices” is a 18-month project led by Antonio De Simone, linked to his 2015 Advanced Grant ERC “MicroMotility”.  Stripe-o-Morph will focus on morphing tubular structures which are extensively used in interventional medical devices (e.g., stents). Current solutions lack adaptability to complex geometries and to patient-specific needs. The new project proposes the use of devices with superior morphing capabilities, bio-inspired by motile micro-organisms, previously investigated in the ERC AdG “MicroMotility”, and based on the concept of morphing-by-sliding of parallel strips.

The core research team includes Antonio DeSimone (Sissa and Sant’Anna), Giovanni Noselli (SISSA), Marino Arroyo  (UPC Barcelona), Jacopo Quaglierini (PhD student in BioRobotics, Sant’Anna) and one senior scientist to be appointed at Sissa working full time on the project. The team will be helped by the Research and Valorisation offices of Sissa and UPC, and by an Advisory Board with expertise on both academic research and technology transfer.

Antonio De Simone comments: “An interesting aspect that makes this project peculiar is that it was born in a physical lab housed within the area of mathematics. The way some single celled organisms change their shape, moving from cylindric to non-cylindric shapes, has been observed under a microscope. The mechanism that regulates the change of shape has been interpreted in the light of a classic result of Differential Geometry, Gauss's Theorema Egregium. The sliding of the strips that make up the tubular surface changes its metric. Thanks to this it is possible to transform a cylinder into a much more general tubular surface, with non-zero Gaussian curvature. The possibility of creating prototypes using 3D printing has made it possible to concretely visualize the potential of this morphing-by-sliding concept, initially intuited on the basis of mathematical models, and now protected by a patent.

Two important grants to SISSA Mathematics Area

Gianluigi Rozza, Head of SISSA Mathematics Area, SISSA mathLab coordinator and SISSA Director’s Delegate for Valorisation of Knowledge, Innovation, Technology Transfer and Industrial Cooperation, comments: “With the PoC funding scheme ERC aims at valorizing projects and ideas developed through actions that support technology transfer. The funding of these two projects is a great piece of news for our School. The grants to ARGOS and Stripe-o-Morph follow the ones got by SISSA professors Davide Zoccolan and Mathew Diamond and are the first in the SISSA's Area of mathematics”.

(Image from IStock)