Volume 6, Edition 7 – December 2010
ATN in PROFILE
Building on collaborations that first began three years ago with the establishment of the Australia-China NanoNetwork, an Australia/China Joint Laboratory on Nanoscience will be established within the Suzhou Industry Park in Jiangsu Province, China.
The initiative builds on the current MOU between the ATN and the International Strategic Technology Alliance (ISTA) of Chinese universities, with Nanjing-based Southeast University the key Chinese partner for the laboratory.
The agreement for the laboratory was signed during the recent high-level university delegation to China, lead by Minister for Tertiary Education, Senator Chris Evans. Speaking at the signing ceremony, Senator Evans highlighted the laboratory as “a great example of the kind of cutting-edge research that can be undertaken when Australian and Chinese organisations work together.”
The laboratory was also welcomed by Innovation Minister, Senator Kim Carr, referring to it as an “important agreement that will create further linkages and opportunities for Australian universities to engage with the rapidly expanding Chinese research sector.
Through partnership, we can explore the exciting opportunities now opening in the nanotechnology field. Research undertaken at this centre, for example, could lead to better diagnosis and treatment of cancer; and more effective purification of drinkable and waste waters.”
The goal of the ATN Joint Laboratory in Suzhou is to provide a working research environment in which staff and research students from the partners can undertake collaborative projects in targeted areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology.
ATN Chair, Professor Ross Milbourne, said the delegation and support shown by the Australian government for initiatives such as the NanoNetwork highlight the importance of China as a key market for the Australian economy by way of education and innovation.
"Our international collaborative partnerships are key to growing our next generation of research leaders who will ensure that we remain a relevant, global and innovative nation. A visit such as this, and the announcement of the nanoscience laboratory, is a tangible demonstration of our commitment as a nation to those partnerships.
"This laboratory will be an international hub for research with a focus on the application of nanoscience to solve global problems in the area of health and medicine, the environment and renewable energy. Importantly, it will offer significant partnering opportunities for Australian researchers and PhD students – who will really be the engine room of our nation in the future.”