Sarah Ruepp, Associate Professor at DTU Fotonik, receives the Elektron Award 2020. In this photo she exhibits an IoT-based tracker prototype. Photo: Jesper Scheel.

Internet of Things-researcher receives this year's AEG Elektron Award

Monday 30 Nov 20
by Tobias Sydradal Lund


Sarah Renée Ruepp
Associate Professor
DTU Electro
+45 45 25 36 27


Lars-Ulrik Aaen Andersen
Head of Department
DTU Electro
+45 45 25 38 16

About the award

The AEG Elektronfonden’s Elektron Award is presented once a year to “promote technical scientific developments within electrotechnology, and in this way contribute to giving Danish industry’s current and future employees a constantly richer higher education.”

She is a driving force in education and research of the Internet of Things. Associate Professor Sarah Ruepp, DTU Fotonik, receives the AEG Elektronfondens Elektron Award 2020.

"In recent years, Sarah Ruepp has been a driving force from DTU Fotonik within education and research in Internet of Things devices and applications," writes AEG Elektronfonden in its motivation of Sarah Ruepp as receiver of this year's Elektron Award.

“It is a great recognition of my work to be awarded the Electron Award. Both in relation to my research, but also teaching and innovation,” says Sarah Ruepp, Associate Professor at DTU Fotonik. The foundation's motivation further states:

“In addition to researching and teaching in Internet of Things (IoT), Sarah is also a co-founder of the startup company LokaTrack ApS. This demonstrates not only an academic interest but also a desire for making research valuable for society. This is also reflected in the many research projects, in collaboration with industry, focusing on the use of technology for people, in which Sarah Ruepp is involved in.”

The Internet of Things – or just IoT, as it is abbreviated - is about connecting things. It can be anything from relatively simple connections; like connecting your refrigerator with your smartphone, to life-or-death-determining connections; as the connection of self-driving cars of the future.

“My research area is reliable communication networks. It is about ensuring that data reaches through the network even in situations where failures occur. This requires an interplay of many different technologies," says Sarah Ruepp and continues:

"The IoT sector is growing massively, and billions of IoT devices are expected to enter the market"
Sarah Ruepp, Associate Professor, DTU Fotonik,

“The IoT sector is growing massively, and billions of IoT devices are expected to enter the market. Therefore, it is important that we can develop components and procedures that ensure a reliable and scalable communication framework for IoT systems.”

IoT everywhere

But IoT is not just about "gadgets" like your smart watch or smart refrigerator. IoT is entering into many areas of our lives. One of these areas is e-health, where IoT technology can give patients a better everyday life.

“For example, with the help of IoT technology, we can constantly monitor the condition of cardiac patients, even if they are outside the hospital. That gives patients a great sense of safety and empowerment and has the potential of saving society a lot of money. But it is vital that the connection through the network must be ultra-reliable.”

In addition to e-health applications, Sarah Ruepp also researches IoT energy consumption, coverage and smart cities and smart homes.

“IoT is an area in rapid development and already in 2025, billions of units are expected to be in use. Therefore, our networks and communication solutions must be equipped to support the many exciting applications. It is important to me that the technology we develop can be used in a way that can benefit people,” says Sarah Ruepp.

Head of Department at DTU Fotonik, Lars-Ulrik Aaen Andersen, is pleased that the AEG Elektronfonden has chosen Sarah Ruepp as the recipient of the year:

"It shows that the foundation values the research, innovation and teaching that she represents, and I am proud of that," he says and continues:

"Sarah Ruepp is also an excellent female role model and is deeply involved in dissemination tasks such as 'Girls Day in Science', 'IT camp for girls' and various lectures and workshops for high schools."

In addition to teaching several courses, Sarah Ruepp supervises a large number of PhD, M.Sc. and B.Sc. projects - both at DTU Fotonik, but also in collaboration with other departments and fields of study. She also contributes to continuing education courses on IoT for industrial companies.

This year's AEG Elektron Award should have been awarded at a reception in the autumn, but due to Covid19, the reception will instead be merged with next year's award ceremony. The award also includes a grant of DKK 50,000.

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