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The Department of Science and Technology encouraged the public to look into electricity and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) powered public utility jeepneys as viable alternatives to support sustainable transport fuel diversification and as the government pushes for the modernization of public utility vehicles. 

DOST Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) Executive Director Dr. Enrico Paringit made this pronouncement as government extends the deadline for the modernization of jeepneys to December 31, 2023. 

Paringit said these alternatives are available for licensing from the researchers and can now be benefited by the Filipino people. 

“These modernized Kings of the Road complies with regulations and are in tune with the government’s thrust towards e-vehicles and other forms of mass transportation.  We are optimistic that this upgrade will redound to greater benefits for our citizens,” he said.

The 23-seater electric jeepney PNS compliant prototype was developed in partnership with the Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP).

It is a lithium-ion battery-powered version of the traditional jeepney and produces zero emissions and no noise pollution, making it an environmentally friendly alternative to the diesel-fueled jeepney. 

Furthermore, this e-jeepney has a range of 55km per full charge and a dashboard panel that includes a button to open and close the side door, an emergency button that disables the vehicle, and the standard LED display that shows speed and remaining range. The revolutionary e-jeepney has non-metallic body materials that are excellent insulators with high resistance to corrosion and chemicals.

To address range anxiety, they have also developed battery charging systems along with a workable operations template that involves fleet operations and the collection of daily loan amortization.

On the other hand, the LPG-powered jeepney was developed by the University of the Philippines National Center for Transportation Studies. 

This 18-seater PUV ensures passenger safety and convenience as it features seat partitions to prevent passenger compression, distributed and easy access PUV stop buttons, a rear emergency exit door, digital route signage, a cashless payment system, a CCTV camera system, and a dashcam. They also installed a cabin public address system for passenger convenience.

The LPG-powered jeepney also includes a ramp that can be used to aid persons with disabilities (PWDs) to get on the vehicle.  

These modernized jeepneys also provide passengers with a more spacious and comfortable ride, reducing discomfort and stress caused by overcrowding.

General Santos City – The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and Mindanao State University – General Santos City (MSU-GSC) inaugurated the P5-million Intelligent Systems Laboratory (ISL), March 1. 

The establishment of the research hub will promote and improve research activities in the College of Engineering, encourage collaboration among faculty and students at the university and higher education institutions in the region, and facilitate research activities in artificial intelligence, robotics, and automation.

Project leader Dr. Cristina P. Dadula stressed the research laboratory’s role in nation building. 

“The Intelligent Systems Laboratory (ISL) provides an opportunity for students and faculty to develop relevant solutions for real-world problems using advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and other related fields. This project is our first engagement with PCIEERD. We are looking forward to more projects to sustain our laboratory and shall continue our R&D efforts to help the industries and our local communities,” Dr. Dadula said. 

ISL is equipped with state-of-the-art research equipment, including simulation software, programmable logic controllers, 3D printers, and robotic systems. The laboratory's facilities will enable students and faculty to conduct cutting-edge research in the field of intelligent systems and artificial intelligence and prepare students to be industry ready.

The R&D projects lined up for this research hub will focus on information and communications technology systems, green construction, smart agriculture, and smart manufacturing.

True to its objectives to involve faculty and students, three (3) of the ten (10) proposals from faculty that were submitted in were approved for funding. While one (1) proposal submitted by their students for the Young Innovators Program (YIP) was included in the sixteen (16) short listed proposals. 

Here is the list of approved proposals for funding: 

  • Assessment and Profiling of COVID-19 Pandemic-Induced Wastes in General Santos City: Basis for the Development of Appropriate Solid Waste Management Technologies for the City aims to generate a comprehensive data on composition and classification of wastes generated in General Santos City to use in planning and implementing the relevant waste management activities in the city to protect the public and marine resources in the Sarangani Bay Protected Seascape
  • Characterization of Non-metallic Mineral Deposit Found in General Santos City and Sarangani Province aims to characterize and determine the exact type of the unknown non-metallic mineral that is found in General Santos City and the municipalities of Sarangani Province.
  • HEIRIT: Establishment of ICEBOX: DOST supported TBI for Smart Systems Innovations aims to establish the first university-based Technology Business Incubator for smart systems innovations in MSU-Gensan

In addition, Dr. Usman D. Aragasi, MSU-GSC acting Chancellor, expressed his  gratitude to the DOST-PCIEERD  for always  supporting the  university,  stating that this  funding  will  help   elevate  the  university’s  research capabilities and  contribute to the development of the  province’s  S&T and technopreneurship sector. 

“ The ISL is actually one of the support facilities of the TBI   (Technology  Business Incubator), and I want to thank you for supporting our application for the regional TBI, said Dr.  Aragasi.  

“The Council remains committed to expanding our reach to universities and colleges and establish more laboratories and facilities in the regions to develop and upskill the Philippines’ human resource in STEM,” DOST-PCIEERD executive director Enrico Paringit said.

The inauguration of the Intelligent Systems Laboratory marks a significant milestone in the university's efforts to advance research and development in the field of engineering and technology. With the laboratory's state-of-the-art facilities and advanced research equipment, MSU-GSC is expected to play a significant role in shaping the country's science and technology sector.

The MSU-GSC Intelligent Systems Laboratory was put up through the Institution Development Program of DOST-PCIEERD, which aims to strengthen the capability of institutions to undertake research in S&T fields included in PCIEERD priority areas.

Zamboanga City, February 27, 2023— The Department of Science and Technology Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) and the Ateneo de Zamboanga University (AdZU) on Monday inaugurated the P13.9 million Azul Hub Technology Business Incubator (TBI)

The TBI was developed to support the future economic development of Zamboanga City, Region 9, and the Western Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), as well as provide a venue for local business owners to innovate through cutting-edge technologies that can resolve societal and commercial problems.

DOST Secretary Dr. Renato U. Solidum Jr. encouraged innovators in the region to avail of the services that will be provided by the Azul Hub and accelerate wealth creation in their locality. 

“This TBI facility will hopefully lead to the growth of an ecosystem for Zamboangenos startups and the promotion of an innovation-friendly culture," emphasized Solidum. "We are optimistic that this can bridge the gap between academic and industrial communities in the area and become a synergy point for their collaboration.” 

The Azul Hub was funded by DOST PCIEERD through its Higher Education Institution Readiness for Innovation and Technopreneurship Program, or HEIRIT. 

The HeIRIT Program was developed to help universities meet the Council's TBI funding requirements and train their managers to manage their own DOST-affiliated TBIs to meet the growing demand for early-stage entrepreneurial support, particularly in the regions.

Dr. Enrico C. Paringit, Executive Director of DOST-PCIEERD, stressed that the opening of the facility will strengthen the introduction of technopreneurship courses in higher education. 

"Azul Hub will place a strong emphasis on capacity building as it mentors and trains young professionals, entrepreneurs, innovators, teachers, students, and incubatees to engage in practical innovation," he said. 

Paringit added that "the facility will act as Mindanao's gateway to socioeconomic and entrepreneurial opportunities, stressing the importance of collaboration between academic institutions and business incubators.

Azul Hub is among the 44 TBIs supported by DOST PCIEERD.  

Marawi City— The Department of Science and Technology, the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD), and the Mindanao State University Marawi Campus unveiled on Friday the P10.07 million MSU Marawi Optoelectronics Science Laboratory.

The MSU Marawi Optoelectronics Laboratory, the first of its kind in the region, was put up to provide faculty researchers, graduate, and undergraduate physics students, as well as those from the BARMM, Region 10, and businesses in Iligan and Cagayan De Oro, with a research facility that can inspire them to come up with innovations in the region.

Project Leader Dr. Florencio Recoleto, Jr., emphasized the importance of the laboratory for MSU's physics program. "The facility is also accessible to our PhD residents, who can use the laboratory to the fullest extent possible and leverage the quality of education in the region when it comes to nanoscience," said Recoleto.

DOST Secretary, Dr. Renato Solidum Jr., urged Mindanao State University's researchers and innovators to assist the agency actively and continuously in its pursuit of science, technology, and innovation, particularly in higher education institutions and state universities and colleges. "We are extremely pleased that we can increase the workforce of the country through initiatives like this, which can lead to local and international collaborations as well as boost interest in research, product development, and product outputs because of the facility's presence," he said.

The project was funded under the DOST PCIEERD’s Institutional Development Program to enable local scientists to conduct research on emerging technologies. The MSU Marawi Optoelectronics Laboratory will film deposition of various metals, including copper, palladium, and gold, as well as coatings for stronger materials, anti-wear, anti-thrust, and heat resistance. Optoelectronic devices like solar cells, semiconductors, LEDs, diode lasers, and transistors will also be produced.

"Supporting facilities is part of PCIEERD’s commitment to enable researchers in the region, particularly our students, to realize their full potential for advancing science and making an impact." DOST-PCIEERD Executive Director Dr. Enrico Paringit said.

Paringit also extolled that "the science our innovators and researchers generate should ultimately redound to our people and create ripples for rebuilding and empowering communities such as Southern Mindanao. The laboratory will provide a platform for researchers and students to collaborate on projects that will have a significant impact on the region and the country.

The MSU Marawi Optoelectronics Laboratory is one of the 45 facilities funded by the DOST PCIEERD IDP in the country in the last eight years.

Valenzuela City – To keep up with the latest trends and become more competitive in integrating educational technologies, the Department of Science and Technology Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) and Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU) launched the Multiple Applications for Reality-Virtuality Experience Laboratory (MARVEL).

Funded through the DOST-PCIEERD Institution Development Program (IDP), MARVEL is envisioned to provide state-of-the-art equipment and facilities for training and research in mixed reality applications for medical, allied health, and marine simulations.

MARVEL features an advanced motion capture (MoCap) system with sub-mm 3D precision and high-speed tracking capability. MARVEL also has three top-of-the-line computer workstations with a combination of open-source and commercial software for creating multiple applications on various platforms.

Moreover, there are five head-mounted devices for testing and demonstrating mixed reality applications. All MARVEL devices are in a climate-controlled environment with an advanced sanitation system.

"The launch of the MARVEL facility opens the door for more game-changing innovations that will catapult technology-based solutions for the country’s education and health challenges," said DOST-PCIEERD executive director Dr. Enrico C. Paringit.

During the inauguration, Dr. Michael Joseph S. Diño, the project lead of MARVEL team, expressed his gratitude to DOST-PCIEERD and their partners.

“We consider this as an ichigo ichie" experience. Ichigo ichie according to the Japanese is once in a lifetime. We are hoping to have more once-in-a-lifetime experiences in the near future. Thank you to DOST-PCIEERD and to our partners,” Dr. Diño said. 

This P6.9-million research lab will allow Filipino researchers, educators, and IT professionals to conduct research and development activities and develop products that will help students improve their skills in emergency response and maritime studies.

In addition, the MARVEL project is expected to have a significant impact on the education and research landscape of the Philippines and will help Philippine universities and colleges become more competitive in integrating educational technologies.

The research center will also help us stay at the forefront of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and better prepare our learners for the future.

"We in DOST-PCIEERD have high hopes for the future projects of MARVEL especially the upcoming immersion and capacity-building programs, not only for the educators, researchers, and students at Our Lady of Fatima University but also in other universities. We anticipate the successful development of the mixed reality application through the partnerships and collaborations that will be fostered," Dr. Paringit added.