Engineering research for global solutions
Six new leading researchers are being appointed to the University of Adelaide to build on research strengths in Engineering and Computer Science.
They have been employed within the fields of nanotechnology, hydrological engineering, computer science, mechanical engineering and electrical and electronic engineering.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Mike Brooks said these appointments were an excellent example of how the University builds on existing strengths to create new opportunities.
"Their expertise not only enhances the development and promotion of research for real outcomes across the University, but also helps to promote the necessary critical mass required for research projects of national importance," he said.
Faculty of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences Executive Dean Professor Peter Dowd said the appointments were part of a coordinated strategy to raise research profiles in selected areas.
"These six researchers are at the top of their fields and have much to contribute to the further development of research in the Faculty," he said.
Professor Ian Reid, joint Director of the Active Vision Group at the University of Oxford, will join the School of Computer Science in September to continue his work in Computer Vision. He has been described as one of the100 most-cited computer vision researchers in the last five years.
His particular interests include head/eye robotic platforms for surveillance and navigation, visual geometry and self-calibration of cameras with applications in measurement, augmented reality and virtual reality, visual simultaneous localisation and mapping and human motion capture.
Professor John Abraham, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University in the US, will join the School of Mechanical Engineering in July.
His research interests include multiphase flows, combustion and combustion modelling, and computational fluid mechanics.
Professor Peng Shi, Professorial Research Fellow at Victoria University, will join the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering in December. His research interests are in communications and sensor technologies, control theory and applications, intelligent systems and information processing, fault detection techniques, novel optimisation techniques, and signal and image processing.
He is particularly renowned for his work in wireless communication services, as well as the design of microelectronics systems for instrumentation, optics and photonics.
Professor Shizhang Qiao has joined the School of Chemical Engineering as the University's inaugural Chair of Nanotechnology, highly regarded for his work on novel nanomaterials and nanoporous materials for new energy technologies (cheaper and more durable fuel cells, solar cells and batteries), and health applications including drug and gene delivery. He has filed three patents and has attracted more than $3.5 million in research grants.
Before coming to the University of Adelaide Professor Qiao worked at the University of Queensland for more than 10 years where he was awarded the UQ Foundation Research Excellence Award.
Associate Professor Dusan Losic has also joined Chemical Engineering. Coming to the University from the Ian Wark Research Institute, he is an Australian Future Fellow, and is focusing on new nanoengineering technologies, advanced nanomaterials and devices with emerging applications in health, the environment and energy.
Specific applications include new microchip and nanochromatography separation devices; optical biosensors for detecting cancer cells, biomarkers and water contaminants; nanoegineereed drug-releasing implants for advanced bone therapies; and chemical-free approaches for killing pests in stored grain.
Professor Dmitri Kavetski has come from the University of Newcastle where he was Researcher of the Year in 2011. His current interests focus on improving the reliability of hydrological models, used widely in Australia and worldwide by water agencies, managers and regulators, in areas as diverse as flood forecasting, and water availability assessments, and in improving our scientific understanding of catchment systems.
A significant contribution has been his ongoing development of Bayesian Total Error Analysis (BATEA) used by many researchers worldwide in rainfall-runoff model calibration and uncertainty analysis. It's being trialled by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology for operational use.
Story by Robyn Mills