Funding success for research collaboration between Australia and China

Professor Paul Mulvaney will lead a project to develop flexible graphene electronics after successfully receiving funding from the Australia-China Science Research Fund (ACSRF).

The Australian Government announced funding of $900,000 each for five new centres for Australian universities to work on joint projects with Chinese counterparts.

The new Joint Research Centre, led by the University of Melbourne and Chongquing Institute of Green and Intelligent Technology, will enable Chinese and Australian scientists to work together on the development of flexible electronics applications including low-cost flexible solar cells for portable power generation, low-cost perovskite solar cells for the Australian market and new near-infra-red technologies including photodetectors and night time imaging systems.

The fund was first announced by the federal government during Chinese premier Li Keqiang’s visit to Australia in March 2017.

The University of Melbourne will partner with Chongqing Institute of Green and Intelligent Technology, Wuhan University of Technology, Nanjing University, Monash University, and industrial partners Greatcell Solar, Agilent Technologies and Chongquing Moxi Technology Co to develop low-cost flexible solar cells and near-infra red technology using graphene, one of the most exciting new materials to have emerged in the last 50 years. It opens up potential new products across a wide range of optics, electronics, spectroscopy and energy applications.

Professor Mulvaney is a Professor of Chemistry in the School of Chemistry and Bio21 Institute at the University of Melbourne, and the Director of the Centre of Excellence for Exciton Science. He is an internationally recognised expert in the physics and chemistry of nanoscale materials.

Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the Australia-China Science and Research Fund investment will bolster global partnerships and fuel economic growth.

“Strengthening our global relationships builds our research capacity, increases the potential for commercial application of research and enhances international competitiveness,” Minister Andrews said.

“This funding will help these world-class Australian research institutions build links with China – an important collaborative partner for Australia in science and research.

“This round of Joint Research Centres is focused on priority areas in agreement with the Chinese Government and reflects our industry growth sectors, as well as science and research priorities.”

The centre will contribute to the creation of new industry partners, as well as enhancing existing relationships with partners such as Agilent Technologies, who, through their charitable foundation are supporting Indigenous students to study science.