Fields of research
Collaborative research actions: promoting cross-disciplinary collaborations
Inria's collaborative research actions (ARC) allow several research teams and other organisations to work together to open up promising new fields of collaboration. They encourage the formation of new synergies between complementary approaches and research subjects. Eight collaborative research actions were approved in 2011.We take a look at these projects, which touch upon multiple fields of research.
AINSI: mapping the brain's activity
Cerebral pathologies and vascular anomalies often go hand in hand. Therefore it is important to consider neuronal activity and cerebral vascularisation simultaneously when examining patients. To do this, ARC AINSI attempts to link data provided by different types of MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) - containing information on anatomy, the flow of blood in vessels, irrigation of tissues and cerebral activity – in order to obtain a clearer estimate of neurovascular activity. The tools developed will be assessed with patients suffering from cerebral pathologies characterised by changes in micro-vascularisation (Alzheimer’s disease, stroke).
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Florence Forbes - Tél. : +33 4 76 61 52 50
DADA: monitoring neuron growth in real time
Neural cells are connected by branched projections (dendrites, axons). They form networks used to transmit or store information. This is the key process behind the maturation of the nervous system. But how these protrusions are guided to their targets remains an open-ended question for scientists. Today, researchers at the IBDC are capable of using a microscope to monitor populations of neurons involved in memorisation in Drosophila flies. The aim of ARC DADA is to develop techniques for analysing images in order to describe this growth and compare experimental situations in view of identifying the role of genetic and cellular factors in this process.
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Xavier Descombes - Tél. : +33 4 92 38 76 63
ETERNAL: Assessing consumption of resources with interactive proof systems
It is crucial for embedded systems to determine whether a programme will consume too much energy and too much time in performing its calculations, in other words whether it will remain effective when there are large amounts of data to process. To do this, the programme needs to be analysed. This operation cannot be automated because there is more than one solution to the problem. The purpose of ARC ETERNAL is to develop new techniques to help the Coq automatic proof assistant analyse the efficiency of each programme from this standpoint. Its originality lies in bringing two communities together: the “implicit complexity” group, capable of proving these properties for very simple languages, and the “(semi) automatic demonstration of theorems” group, who can work on programmes written in languages that are highly valued by programmers.
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Ugo Dal Lago - Tél. : +33 3 90 51 20 94
FIBAUR: detecting faulty electrical zones in the heart
Atrial fibrillation is a form of cardiac arrhythmia that is responsible for many medical conditions. It is due to a localised failure of electrical impulses and ablation by burning the deficient zone can help restore a normal heartbeat. However, locating this zone can be difficult and sometimes impossible. ARC FIBAUR is developing tools to analyse cardiac signals captured by an internal catheter –placed in the heart - in order to understand their nature and improve diagnoses and surgical procedures.
Participants: GEOSTAT, SIGMA (ESPCI-ParisTech), INSERM EA3668 Hôpital du Haut Levêque, Bordeaux
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Hussein Yahia - Tél. : +33 5 24 57 41 38
GEOFRAC: Modelling and simulating underground flows
How can we simulate the flow of fluids in order to manage underground water resources, extract petroleum by injecting water, monitor the spread of a pollutant or the evolution of buried nuclear waste? These underground flows are very difficult to simulate precisely because the nature of soils – porous environments with complex networks of rifts –is only partially known. ARC GEOFRAC intends to create a 3D model of these flows by combining stochastic models of rift networks and porous environments and developing 3D versions of 2D rock-rift interaction models created by the teams taking part in this project. Another aim is to design new digital methods that take into account, simultaneously, very different flows due to the heterogeneous character of the environment. These methods will be integrated in the H20 lab platform in Rennes.
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Jocelyne Erhel - Tél. : +33 02 99 84 73 39
MENEUR: Examining the economic relations between service and content providers
The proliferation of Internet players (users, service and content providers and hardware manufacturers) requires a clear understanding of their economic relations. The evolution of networks has indeed raised some crucial questions such as Net neutrality: should service providers alone be held responsible for maintaining the network? Are innovations by content providers a source of revenue for service providers? Are users all treated equally and should they be? Which economic model is best for society? ARC MENEUR attempts to answer these questions by modelling and analysing the behaviour of web players and testing economic models that could promote the development of networks using an approach based on non-cooperative game theory.
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Bruno Tuffin - Tél. : +33 02 99 84 74 94
OCOQS: Managing limited resources among a variable number of users
How can we manage access to a network, shared bandwidth between users or products in stock between different classes of customers? All these problems have a common denominator: sharing resources among a variable and unpredictable number of customers. The optimisation of such a system often requires setting a threshold at which management policy changes (a customer’s request is rejected). This threshold is a simple way of solving the problem. Otherwise, it would be impossible to solve it in a precise manner as soon as the system became more complex. The objective of ARC OCOQS is to identify phenomena resulting in threshold type policies in order to develop a theory that could be used to deal with this class of problems more systematically.
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Ana Busic - Tél. : +33 01 39 63 55 23
SERUS: Toward resilient critical systems
Critical systems designed, for example, to ensure civil defence or personal assistance must be capable of functioning in any circumstances. In order to meet safety engineering requirements, these systems must be able to adapt on their own in the event of accidental or contextual changes in their execution (for example a breakdown or attack), but also cope with natural changes (for example a system upgrade). The capacity of a system to ensure continued safety engineering in the event of such changes is called resilience. ARC SERUS intends to propose a tool-based development methodology covering the entire life cycle of a resilient system.
- Head of the collaborative research actions: Emilie Balland - Tél. : +33 05 24 57 41 11