Three UTS-led research projects have secured more than $1.3M in Australian Government funding through the Australian Research Council’s Linkage Projects scheme. The successful projects will deliver multi-million dollar benefits to primary industry and advanced manufacturing as well as economic, social and cultural benefits for Australian society.
Researchers from the faculties of Science, Business and Engineering will lead collaborations with industry, government and community partners to develop new oyster farming strategies to prevent devastating losses caused by disease outbreaks; improve employment, education and settlement outcomes for Syrian refugees; and advance productivity and innovation in Australia’s gas metal arc welding industry.
“The Linkage Projects scheme promotes collaboration and partnerships between research institutions, government, business, industry and end-users to deliver real benefits to society, so it aligns perfectly with UTS’s approach to research,” says Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Glenn Wightwick. “I’m proud to say this is reflected in the diversity of UTS research collaborations that have secured funding.
“This is an excellent result for UTS. The Linkage Project funding will enable these research partnerships to deliver significant benefits for Australian industry and society.”
Associate Professor and ARC Future Fellow in UTS’s Climate Change Cluster (C3) Justin Seymour and Maurizio Labbate from UTS’s School of Life Sciences and ithree institute were awarded $570,000 to lead a project focusing on oyster aquaculture.
The oyster industry contributes almost $100 million to the Australian economy each year, but disease outbreaks over the last two decades have led to the closure of several oyster-harvesting regions in NSW and Tasmania, resulting in multi-million dollar losses.
Seymour and Labbate will collaborate with UNSW Sydney and the NSW Department of Primary Industries to develop prediction tools and strategies to mitigate future oyster disease outbreaks.
Professor of Social Economics in the UTS Business School Jock Collins secured $450,000 to lead a project with researchers from Western Sydney University and the University of Sydney, focusing on policy and program responses to deliver successful settlement outcomes for Syrian-conflict refugee families in Australia.
The project will be conducted in collaboration with community organisations Settlement Services International Ltd, Access Community Services Ltd, AMES Australia and MDA Ltd.
Professor in Audio, Acoustics and Vibration in the School of Electrical, Mechanical and Mechatronic Systems Xiaojun Qiu and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology Professor Ian Burnett received $315,000 to develop new methods and tools for process monitoring in gas metal arc welding (GMAW) – a welding process widely used in manufacturing processes and well suited to automatic welding.
The researchers will collaborate with Australian company Sound Intuition Pty Ltd to develop an acoustic model and database that will enable process optimisation and automation, and expedite welder training in order to lift the international competitiveness of Australian manufacturing industries.