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New center for artificial intelligence strengthens Dresden as a research location


IMAGE: TU Dresden and Fraunhofer establish ‘Center for Explainable and Efficient AI Technologies – CEE- AI’.
On 11th February 2019, TU Dresden and the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft founded a joint research centre for…
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Credit: © TUD/Technisches Design

TUD Rector, Prof. Hans Müller-Steinhagen, emphasises the strategic importance of the new centre: “With the founding of the centre, TU Dresden and Fraunhofer are creating the prerequisites to make Dresden even more interesting as a location for large AI projects and to recruit and retain the brightest minds in AI research worldwide”.

“Artificial intelligence – if used responsibly – can help solve the biggest problems of humankind”, says Prof. Frank Fitzek, Head of the Deutsche Telekom Chair for Communication Networks at TU Dresden. Prof. Fitzek and his colleague Prof. Jens Lehmann from the Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information Systems (IAIS) are the scientific directors of the new research centre. “Nowadays, artificial intelligence is an important economic factor and innovation driver”, states Fitzek. “The CEE -AI will contribute to training experts in artificial intelligence. We are developing pioneering technologies for a wide range of applications and are securing jobs in the process. Last but not least, it is also a matter of safeguarding the digital independence of Germany and Europe by bundling competencies and advancing our own innovations.”

Artificial intelligence is already part of our everyday lives: from internet search engines, voice control of devices to social media bots. In the years to come, AI researchers will create the right preconditions for countless other innovations. AI systems, for example, could extensively improve medical care coverage in a few years’ time. They are able to compare patient data worldwide with that of thousands of other patients, therapy reports and current research results in a very short period of time. Artificial intelligence can thus help physicians make precise diagnoses and find optimal therapies.

Since AI is more and more frequently utilised, the question of how to address the vast amount of data also arises. At present, they are often stored on huge cloud servers abroad. However, AI technologies such as autonomous driving or intelligent household appliances require on-site computing power in order to enable safe and efficient collaboration between man and machine. “Small data” is another important topic that scientists at the CEE -AI want to address.

Research at the new centre will cover the entire spectrum from hardware support and device communication to AI approaches and transfer into practice. As the name suggests, a special focus will be on “explainable” and “efficient” AI technologies. They should be designed in such a way that users can understand their functionalities. “In all developments, we have to include humans”, states Frank Fitzek. The term “efficiency” refers, on the one hand, to energy efficiency but also to efficient cooperation between man and machine. For this endeavour, the Dresden science hub provides optimal conditions with its strong competences in the fields of microelectronics, communications technology, psychology and social sciences.

The CEE -AI will initially coordinate existing AI research institutions and industrial partners as a virtual research centre. In the future, own facilities and new staff will be added.

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