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Tuesday, December 1, 2020
First National Altitude
First National Altitude

University researchers receive funding boost

Four University of Newcastle researchers will benefit from a substantial funding boost.

Dr Elizabeth Bromfield, Dr Stephan Tornier, Dr Umit Kurt and Dr Jessica Allen have received more than $1.6m in grants from the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) scheme.

The quartet’s research areas include reproductive science; the mathematics of symmetry; carbon capture and utilisation; and middle eastern history.

University of Newcastle Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) Professor Janet Nelson said the funding was important for the development of talented researchers and quality research.

“This will be of great benefit to the early career researchers and I’m pleased to see researchers from such a wide variety of disciplines being awarded these grants,” she added.

“These research projects are each addressing important issues that will make a real difference to society, from food futures to developing next generation resources.

“Dr Bromfield, Dr Tornier, Dr Kurt and Dr Allen have been chosen because their projects were considered world-leading in their fields.

“I congratulate each of them on their significant achievement.”

Minister for Education Dan Tehan announced $84m for 200 new Australian projects to be funded under the DECRA scheme, which supports early-career researchers to focus on advancing their research and creating opportunities to build important connections and knowledge.

University of Newcastle grant recipients and their projects:

Dr Elizabeth Bromfield (from the School of Environmental and Life Sciences) is investigating how plant and animal germ cells respond to environmental stresses that are known to disrupt fertility. This project aims to improve the tolerance of reproductive cells to heat stress, to prevent economic losses and help to secure future food production.

Dr Stephan Tornier (School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences) is aiming to advance our knowledge in the area of ‘zero-dimensional’ symmetry, the type of symmetry that digital file systems and data networks may have. This knowledge has the potential to inform the design and usage of such systems.

Dr Umit Kurt (School of Humanities and Social Science) is looking at the historical impact and consequences of the Ottoman Empire’s violent history. Dr Kurt’s research will re-examine the classical historical narrative about the emergence of the post-Ottoman Middle East, and seek to understand the wider, global dimensions of mass violence.

Dr Jessica Allen (School of Engineering) aims to develop a novel solar-driven manufacturing process able to produce advanced carbon materials which effectively sequester carbon dioxide. This project investigates the potential to use this technology to offset global carbon dioxide emissions.

A full list of the 2021 ARC DECRA recipients and their projects is available on the ARC website.

First National Altitude
First National Altitude