$16.5 million awarded for new research discoveries

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

University of Adelaide researchers have today been awarded $16.5 million in federal funding for new research in fields such as health, agriculture, the environment, engineering, physics and demographics.

A total of 36 new grants have been awarded to the University of Adelaide from the Australian Research Council (ARC) for major research projects and fellowships, early career funding, and infrastructure:
• $9.1m for 23 Discovery Projects
• $2.7m for three Future Fellowships
• $1.8m for five Discovery Early Career Researcher Awards, and
• $2.9m for five Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities grants.

"Today's new research funding will continue the outstanding work of University of Adelaide researchers in pursuing discoveries that address state and national priorities, as well as global needs," says the University's Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), Professor Mike Brooks.

"The new research projects funded today will investigate clean and cost-effective solar hydrogen energy, analyse the impact of climate change on fish stocks in our oceans, improve our understanding of how bacteria function and adapt to change, and develop nanotechnology materials that could have widespread application to industry, to name just some of the exciting work to be conducted by our staff."

A team led by Professor Martin Lambert (School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering) has been awarded a $499,000 Discovery Project to develop urgently needed, non-invasive methods to assess the condition of water pipes and enable "just in time" predictive repair; while a team led by Professor Dabing Zhang (School of Agriculture, Food and Wine) has been awarded a $513,500 Discovery Project to advance the fundamental biology of rice and barley, which could lead to significant yield improvements in those cereal crops.

Future Fellowships have been awarded to three outstanding researchers in the fields of: philosophy, with $897,000 to Dr Jordi Fernandez (Department of Philosophy); genetics and evolution, with $929,464 to Professor Frank Grutzner (School of Biological Sciences); and mathematics, with $904,000 to Associate Professor Yvonne Stokes (School of Mathematical Sciences).

Dr Daniel King (School of Psychology) has won a $312,708 Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) to produce a new model of the mechanisms underlying problem online gaming. Dr Lingqiao Liu (School of Computer Science) has also received a $360,000 DECRA to further develop visual recognition techniques for the benefit of cybernetic security in Australia.

Of the five Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities grants, $1.39 million has been awarded to Associate Professor Gavin Rowell (Department of Physics), to ensure Australia's involvement in a very high energy gamma-ray astronomy instrument that is expected to transform high energy astrophysics; and $510,000 to Professor Darren Trott (School of Animal and Veterinary Science) to establish "biobank" laboratories to detect animal species' antimicrobial resistance, helping to improve the health and production of Australian livestock.

Full details of all projects announced today can be found on the ARC website.


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