Thermal energy harvesting, tissue repair research receives funding under International Research Partnerships Program

James Hutchison and Andrea O'Connor
Dr Hutchison and Professor O'Connor's exciting research projects will be supported by the program.

Researchers in biomedical engineering and chemistry will receive funding from the Victorian Government's $3.6 million International Research Partnerships Program, delivered by research management organisation VESKI.

Professor Andrea O’Connor from the University's Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology will collaborate with the University of Bayreuth to develop multidimensional biomaterials for tissue repair.

Dr James Hutchison from the Faculty of Science will partner with the Research Institute for Electronic Science (RIES), University of Hokkaido, to develop new materials for the harvesting and manipulation of thermal energy.

The ambitious and exciting projects will strengthen the University of Melbourne's relationships with leading international institutions and will attract global graduate research talent to Melbourne.

Professor O’Connor said "the University of Bayreuth is renowned for their expertise in developing natural biopolymers, like spider silks, with excellent strength and biocompatibility for biomedical applications.

"By combining our complementary expertise and novel materials technologies, this project aims to create new 3D biomaterial structures to enable the repair of nerve tissues."

Dr Hutchinson said "the RIES Institute have world-leading expertise in photonics and will provide high resolution, tuneable optical nanostructures that will be combined with novel infrared-active nanomaterials synthesised in Melbourne.

"This combination will open new avenues towards thermal energy harvesting devices for better exploitation of heat and a more efficient global energy economy."

The funding is provided through the Victorian Government International Research Partnerships Program and delivered by research management organisation VESKI.