Professor Robert Berry, Executive Dean of the School of Engineering & Applied Sciences (EAS), has led a successful visit to India, which has strengthened the University's international links.
During his visit Professor Berry signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Anna University in Chennai. This five year partnership will allow collaboration across a range of areas including education, research and development and student and faculty exchange.
Following the successful trip, a 10 strong delegation from Anna University was welcomed to Aston in March. The group saw the research and facilities on offer, and met with senior members of staff including the Vice Chancellor.
Professor Berry’s visit to India also included meetings with the British Council and the Managing Director of Tata Motors, Dr Ravi Kant. Along with Dr Sudhakar Sagi, he met with academics at the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi, who are working alongside Aston on a joint Science Bridges project. The research teams have secured a £3m grant to build bio-energy power plants to tackle energy poverty in rural India and promote renewable energy in the UK.
The University’s strong partnership links with India will be strengthened further this summer with EAS sponsoring a student team from the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay, to take part in Formula Student 2009. Organised by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Formula Student encourages future engineering talent with student teams designing and producing a single-seater racing car to compete against fellow students across the world.
‘EAS enjoys a strong world wide reputation for high quality research,’ said Professor Berry. ‘We’re extremely pleased to have forged new links with existing partners and a new international collaboration with Anna University in India. We believe our new Memorandum agreement will further strengthen our collaborative work in a range of innovative technology areas including the development of biomass power generation.’
Words by Alex Earnshaw
Photo by Huw Meredith