Skip to content
Back to Blog

Interviewing Dr. Ronny Timmreck: The future with Material Sensing

We have talked to Dr. Ronny Timmreck about the founding of Senorics, what drives him as CEO, and what the future will look like with Material Sensing.

Valerie Morris
Valerie Morris

Apr 15, 2022

“You need a good amount of enthusiasm. It isn’t possible to found a company without passion for the technology and the product. There needs to be purpose that drives you.”


 

By now you most likely know what Senorics does, the technology it develops, and the applications it targets. But how did Senorics come to be? What were the biggest milestones in the 5 years since the founding, and is there a killer application waiting to be unleashed?

Our CEO Dr. Ronny Timmreck has taken the time to shed some light on these questions. With a strong background in physics, he took on the challenge to lead Senorics towards success. Based on more than 10 years of research, the technology is destined for greatness. But how exactly will the future with Material Sensing look like?


CEO_Ronny_Timmreck

Can you tell us a bit more about your background?

“I was already very interested in physics in high school, especially in renewable energies. I had my first business idea as a teenager; we started building experimentation systems for younger students and sold them to schools. It gave me the chance to combine my passion for physics with the entrepreneurial drive I felt from a young age.

I went on to study physics in Dresden and founded my first company in 2003. leXsolar now operates worldwide and celebrates its 20th anniversary next year. Our goal as purpose-driven company was, and still is, to educate young people about renewable energies by developing and selling training and education systems to schools and universities. Through this experience I gained knowledge in building and growing a company. Additionally, it taught me how to recruit, motivate, and strengthen a team. After I finished my studies at university, I went on to do my doctorate while also working at leXsolar.”

What made you decide to found Senorics?

“Towards the end of my doctorate I talked to Prof. Karl Leo, my thesis advisor. He told me about some patents that the TU Dresden was owning, which originated from my field of expertise. Prof. Karl Leo, with his great level of experience in startups, felt that they were quite promising and should be put to use. This was when the initial idea of Senorics was born. I was rather passionate about it from the start, as I could see the potential of the patents. What followed was the recruitment of the team, grant applications and the actual founding in 2017.

Another factor that motivated me, was the opportunity to build another company and the chance to support the development of a technology from the initial idea to mass market readiness. I was driven by the purpose to create something that would benefit millions of people - Material Sensing seemed extremely promising in that regard. I was always a founder, an entrepreneur, and so naturally I was compelled to found Senorics.”

What is driving you in your position as CEO and founder of Senorics now?

“It’s really the same thing that was driving me in the beginning – to turn theoretical research findings into real products, something that can be applied in everyday life. I find it astounding, how abstract scientific results can be transformed into actual applications. Witnessing this transformation is what gives me purpose and the motivation to keep pushing forward in my role as CEO.

I also find it very rewarding to build up a team and achieve important milestones together. You start with a few people, over time more join and a team spirit is forming. From that grows the actual product – it’s a very fulfilling process to witness.”

Senorics was founded nearly 5 years ago, in June 2017. What were the most outstanding milestones until now?

“Obviously the financing rounds were very important on our journey. The development from idea to product relies on investments; especially the hardware development is very capital-intensive. We finalized our first finance round in 2018, which was the stepping stone away from the university and subsidies, and towards commercialization. The second finance round was closed in early 2021. All-in-all we raised more than 10m€ to transform Material Sensing into a widely used tool.

Looking at the technology, one of the biggest milestones was the miniaturization of our chip down to 10x10 mm². Bringing it down to that size made it small enough to be implemented into actual products. Our handheld device and OEM module were also big milestones; they moved Material Sensing to an industrial level where it has a positive impact on actual users.”

Ronny_Timmreck_holding_sensor_chip

What do you see as Senorics’ killer application?

“This is a question that has given us a headache in the past, as it was talked about so much. I tell you what I think: there is no one killer application.

The strength of our technology lays in its wide range of application possibilities. We want people to benefit in their own ways - from our handheld device, the OEM module, and later on from a smartphone integration. No matter whether it is the vintner detecting alcohol levels with her handheld device, students relying on their washing machine with integrated sensor module to choose the right washing program, or the diabetic trying to determine the sugar content with his smartphone – they all benefit equally.

Ultimately, we aren’t aiming for one big application, but for many small ones that make everyone’s life more convenient. So even though there is no one killer application, there certainly is one killer technology and that’s Material Sensing."

How do you imagine Senorics’ future?

“In the future I see our chip implemented into smartphones, providing everyone with the benefits that Material Sensing has to offer. At this point our chip will already be integrated into a range of B2B applications and companies all over the world will reap the benefits. We will provide businesses and consumers with real value, and make their lives simpler, more convenient, and more secure.

We have seen it happen once before: OLED, which was developed at the same institute and is also based on organic electronics, is now part of every smartphone. Imagine you buy your next phone, with the OLED display in the front and Senorics’ chip implemented in the back – all developed in Dresden. That would be quite an achievement.”

Let’s say Senorics’ chip gets implemented into a smartphone next week. Is there something that personally you would really like to use it for?

“I’m a hobby vintner and I own 25 grapevines. There are so many things that need measuring in the process, like the sugar content during growth and the alcohol levels.

It would be great if I could simply pull my phone out of my pocket and measure it all in one go. And to be honest with you, this isn’t actually that farfetched from the technological level we are on now.”

What would you say about your team, the people working at Senorics?

“We have an amazing company culture. This is something you can’t just create; it develops over time. Our team constellation is great, everyone is contributing with their personal skills and abilities. The communication and general interactions are based on trust and mutual values, you can tell that everyone is having fun and enjoying the work they do. Everyone is motivated and strongly believes in Senorics’ purpose, which reflects in the results.”

Senorics_Team

Thanks to Dr. Ronny Timmreck for his time and the insight he has given us. We are looking forward into a bright future and are curious about what is waiting for us on our mission to make Material Sensing available to everyone. Will you join us on our journey?

Head to our website if you would like to learn more about our technology and the possibilities it opens up.

Valerie Morris

I’m Senorics’ Content Creator. Most of the things you read on our website or on our social media accounts were written by me. I started working here in March 2020 when I was still living in Dresden. Now I have moved to New Zealand and work remotely from the opposite time zone.

Newsletter_Header

Subscribe to our newsletter

Don’t miss out on any news! Sign up for our newsletter 16 Pixels and receive monthly updates from the world of Material Sensing.

Latest Articles

How to conduct a measurement with the SenoCorder Solid

Learn how to use the SenoCorder Solid to identify and quantify materials quickly, easily, and non-destructively.

How the SenoCorder evolved - A short history of mobile sensing

From Textile Analyzer to SenoCorder Solid: learn more about the evolution of our mobile sensing handheld device.

Interviewing Dr. Ronny Timmreck: The future with Material Sensing

We have talked to Dr. Ronny Timmreck about the founding of Senorics, what drives him as CEO, and what the future will look like with Materi...