BOFFINS studying the practical uses of microbes and fungi, pharmaceuticals and composite materials in the University of Limerick have been awarded a whopping €4 million in funding.
Research projects in the areas of maths, pharmaceuticals and composite materials have been awarded over €4m in Science Foundation Ireland funding, furthering the University’s already spectacular research pedigree.
The announcement was made this Wednesday, “cementing UL’s reputation as a centre for excellence in translational research, focused on delivering real impact for Irish industry”, it claimed.
Dr Mary Shire, UL Vice President for Research, said the award would “build on UL’s expertise in engineering and mathematics”.
“The importance of engineering and mathematics in solving real world problems continues to be a focus for UL,” she said.
“We are working in partnership with companies to enhance their competitiveness and deliver to them graduates with the relevant skills and experience,” she added.
The three projects are being led by academics within UL’s Faculty of Science and Engineering, including Professor Gavin Walker and his team. Professor Walker aims to improve manufacturing competitiveness and enhance the research and design mandate and activity of Irish pharmaceutical manufacturing sites and companies.
His academic colleague Professor Andrew Fowler is aiming to use applied mathematics to study plant, microbial, and fungal biomass growth and its dependence on soil nutrients in his research. This research will provide predictive tools for use in fertiliser application and other areas of agriculture, septic tank installations, and many other situations concerning soil.
Dr Conor McCarthy, working in the area of composite materials - stronger, lighter and less expensive than traditional materials - is focusing on a new approach to joining composites to metals which does not require any mechanical fastening and would thus be highly advantageous to manufacturers, allowing them to make cheaper but higher performing products.