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On December 9, a unique educational and research laboratory for the Internet of Things (IoTLab) was inaugurated at Lobachevsky University. The laboratory was opened with the support of the Nizhny Novgorod branch of Orion Innovation. The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the fast-developing areas of computer technology finding wide practical application in various fields of modern science, technology and industry. For example, more than 50 billion devices are expected to be connected by 2020, and the total added economic value from IoT use is expected to be $1.9 trillion. The application of IoT is universal and pervasive, including smart cities, smart medicine, smart manufacturing, etc. The IoTLab is being set up at the Institute of Information Technologies, Mathematics and Mechanics (IITMM) to support the laboratory workshop of the Master's programme in Digital Transformation Technologies in the Software Engineering field of study. The laboratory workshop is aimed at providing students with practical skills and knowledge of the latest achievements in the modern IT industry related to Big Data, artificial intelligence and machine learning methods, decision-making support systems, and cybernetic physical systems.

Elena Zagaynova, Rector of Lobachevsky University: "Сongratulations to all of us! Today, a unique laboratory with new educational opportunities opens at the university. It is especially important that the company has come to us to set up a good lab for our students, and now we will train them together. This is a big victory for us. We are very pleased that company representatives will teach together with us, implement big and small innovation projects with the students and develop our all-round interaction. The format is very interesting, and we hope to scale it up and to have fruitful cooperation!"

The Internet of Things Laboratory was created with the support of the Nizhny Novgorod division of Orion Innovation (formerly MERA) and in cooperation with the UNN Laboratory "Physical Fundamentals and Technologies of Wireless Communications".

The IoTLab draws on the technical and methodological achievements of the Laboratory "Physical Fundamentals and Technologies of Wireless Communications" in the field of Internet of Things obtained during the implementation of a large number of innovation projects in this area, including the results of the ECOIMPACT European ERASMUS+ project. In this project, an adaptive educational environment was developed, allowing students to use Internet of Things technologies and to record in their personal knowledge bases the experience they have gained both during their studies and in the course of their professional career.

The Orion Innovation Development Centre has a long-standing and close relationship with the UNN Institute of Information Technologies, Mathematics and Mechanics. The company's experts are happy to share their experience with students: they give lecture courses, introduce students to modern technology, and carry out research projects. The opening of the IoTLab is a new step in cooperation between IITMM and Orion Innovation. There are plans for several projects in the field of energy and smart building management to be carried out at this laboratory. UNN students and faculty members will work with Orion Innovation staff to design and implement various components and levels of IoT systems, setting the stage for the ambitious Smart Building project.

Orion Innovation is an international corporation that develops IT solutions for business and specialises in software development, interface design and digital transformation services. The Orion Innovation Development Centre, formerly known as MERA, is responsible for developing complex software products at Orion Innovation. Teams of engineers in Russia, Serbia, Lithuania and Germany help clients deliver communications services, automate factories, drive cars and save lives.