Thursday 13th September 2018
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Science projects ranging from ways to make New Zealand more resilient to climate change to developing superconductor computer processors are among 69 new research initiatives funded through this year's $249 million Endeavour Fund round
New Zealand's largest contestable research fund and several of the projects are geared toward addressing key environmental issues that have been raised in recent times. Fresh-water management and biosecurity incursions - after Myrtle Rust and Mycoplasma bovis were detected in New Zealand - are high-profile issues.
For example, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research is looking at an aerial monitoring system for better river management while the University of Otago is studying how to use pollen testing to identify and monitor new plant incursions into New Zealand. The Livestock Improvement Corp is looking to breed more efficient dairy cattle.
"This year the Endeavour Fund is investing in improving our resilience to climate change, our transition to a low-emissions economy, monitoring of natural disasters, and protecting our biodiversity," research, science and innovation minister Megan Woods said in a statement.
Other projects are focused on reducing risks from eruptions in New Zealand geothermal fields and on reducing force transmission to buildings from vertical and horizontal seismic motion during earthquakes. Another aims to develop superconductor central processors to meet the demands for faster computing power.
“Research and science helps us find solutions to the challenges that we face in our changing world. It’s essential that we tackle issues like climate change, decarbonisation, threats to our biodiversity, and microplastics in our oceans," Woods said.
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