Engineering and the Environment

Southampton research exchanges with leading centres in China

28 March 2012


Kai Luo, Chair in Energy Systems, has secured a grant of £99,000 to host a Newton International Fellow from China.

Dr Sheng Chen, from State Key Laboratory of Coal Combustion in Wuhan, will arrive in Southampton in late March to work with Kai and his group on research into clean combustion. “We are delighted to secure this grant from the Royal Society and British Academy, which was aimed at attracting the best researchers in any discipline from all over the world,” says Kai. “Only 40 awards are made each year. Competition is extremely high so you need to match the most outstanding overseas candidates with the best UK hosts, which I am glad to say is Southampton in this case.”

Kai Luo has also won £12,000 from the Royal Academy of Engineering under the Research Exchanges with China and India scheme. It will support joint work on sustainable propulsion technologies between his team and a group in Tsinghua University in Beijing, China’s top engineering school. The scheme encourages building links with leading research centres in China for a long-term partnership.

Commenting on the need for international collaboration, Kai explains “China’s share of the world's research papers written in English is now second only to that of the USA. A report in 2011 by the Royal Society predicted that China will surpass the USA as the leading producer of research publications before 2020. It is therefore important to be engaged with leading players in China and other emerging economies especially in areas like energy and climate change.”