Research teams obtain ARC LIEF funding with support from NSSN


UTS Professor Guandong Xu and Professor Paul Dastoor from Newcastle University. Image credit: NSSN.

Research teams from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) and the University of Newcastle have been awarded $958,000 under the Australian Research Council’s Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) program, thanks to the support of NSW Smart Sensing Network (NSSN).

The LIEF program provides universities with funding for major research facilities that are essential for vital research in Australia’s national priority areas.

UTS researchers, led by Professor Guandong Xu, will receive $538,350 to establish the world’s first large-scale experimental facility for research in advanced computing, smart sensing and analytics for Industry 4.0.

“The facility will integrate various devices, equipment and technologies into a fully controlled and automated test bed, including AI and data analytics, sensors, IoT and edge computing, robotics, cybersecurity, cloud and distributed computing,” Xu said.

“The project will strengthen Australia’s manufacturing capacity, benefiting the recently launched National Manufacturing Roadmap. The facility will advance the application of knowledge in a range of areas such as renewable energy, agribusiness, waste recycling, circular economy and healthcare. »

Former NSSN Data Theme Lead, Dr. Zhitao Xiong, will continue to collaborate with the project team as an investigator.

Led by Professor Paul Dastoor, a research team from Newcastle University will receive $420,347 to build Australia’s first scanning helium microscope designed for the biological sciences (BioSHeM). The instrument will be the first of its kind in the world.

“The microscope was designed for non-destructive imaging in biological and medical sciences,” Dastoor said.

“Biological samples typically degrade rapidly when imaged using electron microscopy (and other energy microscopy). Our unique microscope uses ultra-low energy helium atoms that completely eliminate damage to the sample. “

NSSN MedTech Theme Leader Jane Evans will continue to work with the project team as an investigator.

The success of LIEF 2021 is a testament to NSSN’s abilities to foster collaboration between academia, industry and government, according to NSSN Co-Directors Professors Benjamin Eggleton and Julien Epps.

“Our Theme Leaders are experts in connecting researchers with end users in industry and government, positioning NSW and Australia as a leader in the development and adoption of innovative sensing technologies” , they said.

Other research projects funded under this LIEF cycle include:

  • $1.2 million to the University of Western Sydney to establish a National Physical Fire Simulation Facility to conduct high quality research in fire-related disciplines;
  • $480,000 to the University of Sydney for a unique multi-wavelength continuous and pulsed wave laser system that will support basic and applied research and industrial projects benefiting Australia by increasing advanced manufacturing capacity; and
  • $158,845 to the University of New South Wales (UNSW) to improve our understanding of groundwater recharge through a network of sensors deployed in underground spaces. The recharge observation system will generate new fundamental knowledge for the management of water resources.

More details on the announced LIEF projects are available here. For more information on the LIEF system (Infrastructures, Equipment and Liaison Installations), go to LIEF page on the ARC website.


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