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University of South Australia collaborates on a joint laboratory to advance laser and sensor technologies

The University of South Australia (UniSA) has collaborated with Shandong Academy of Sciences (SDAS) on the establishment of a joint laboratory in advanced lasers and sensors.

This collaboration, which is supported by the South Australian Government, consists of two major facilities located in Adelaide and China’s Jinan City.

According to the announcement made by UniSA, the South Australian Government is forging closer links with SDAS by underpinning a 3-year collaboration agreement with all three South Australian universities and committing A$ 900,000 to support the advancement of collaborative research with China.

Australian and Chinese scientific and technological resources will be integrated for this lasers and sensors research collaboration. Combining the top-class resources of both countries will surely boost their capacity to discover significant technological breakthroughs within the next five years.

Their research will be focusing on the development of advanced lasers and sensors for humidity sensing and trace detection of toxins in food products, R&D and commercialisation of planar waveguide-based infrared lasers and advanced gas sensors.

UniSA Deputy Vice Chancellor: Research, Professor Tanya Monro said that the joint laboratory aims to develop original and internationally competitive lasers and sensor products, which may lead to the possibility for both Australian and Chinese businesses to collaborate and innovate.

Prof Monro explained that this sector has an enormous international potential of upgrading existing industries. At the same time, this can eventually support the formation of new industries wherein advanced sensor and laser technologies are crucial.

She added that by bringing both research teams together, it is expected that invention times will be shortened. This joint project can also leverage on the global links of both South Australia and Shandong.

The A$ 1.6 million lab is jointly funded by UniSA, SDAS and the South Australian Government. This will also support places for six PhD students.

They will also establish a SDAS-UniSA Joint Graduate Program in order to appoint supervisors, graduates, and PhD students from both UniSA and SDAS to the facilities.

The Laser Institute of SDAS, which was established in 1978, currently has several national and provincial labs and research centres.

UniSA is one of Australia’s five key technology universities and ranked in the top 100 in the world in engineering technologies. Add to that, UniSA is engaged in the kind of advanced laser and sensor technologies research to support the enduring success of SDAS in the field.

This partnership between South Australia and Shandong will be deepened by this collaboration. They are building on the Inter-Governmental Agreement on Shandong-South Australia Science and Technology Industrialisation Cooperation Platform, which was signed in May 2017.

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