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The following results are related to Canada. Are you interested to view more results? Visit OpenAIRE - Explore.
228 Projects, page 1 of 23

  • Canada
  • 2021-2021
  • UK Research and Innovation

10
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  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/W004216/1
    Funder Contribution: 100,310 GBP
    Partners: CAF, FFI, Université Sherbrooke, McGill University, Space For Life Museum Montreal, STRI, UK Ctr for Ecology & Hydrology fr 011219, Naturalis Biodiversity Center, AU

    Insects are the little things that run the world (E.O. Wilson). With increasing recognition of the importance of insects as the dominant component of almost all ecosystems, there are growing concerns that insect biodiversity has declined globally, with serious consequences for the ecosystem services on which we all depend. Major gaps in knowledge limit progress in understanding the magnitude and direction of change, and hamper the design of solutions. Information about insects trends is highly fragmented, and time-series data is restricted and unrepresentative, both between different groups of insects (e.g. lepidoptera vs beetles vs flies) and between different regions. Critically, we lack primary data from the most biodiverse parts of the world. For example, insects help sustain tropical ecosystems that play a major role in regulating the global climate system and the hydrological cycle that delivers drinking water to millions of people. To date, progress in insect monitoring has been hampered by many technical challenges. Insects are estimated to comprise around 80% of all described species, making it impossible to sample their populations in a consistent way across regions and ecosystems. Automated sensors, deep learning and computer vision offer the best practical and cost-effective solution for more standardised monitoring of insects across the globe. Inter-disciplinary research teams are needed to meet this challenge. Our project is timely to help UK researchers to develop new international partnerships and networks to underpin the development of long-term and sustainable collaborations for this exciting, yet nascent, research field that spans engineering, computing and biology. There is a pressing need for new research networks and partnerships to maximize potential to revolutionise the scope and capacity for insect monitoring worldwide. We will open up this research field through four main activities: (a) interactive, online and face-to-face engagement between academic and practitioner stakeholders, including key policy-makers, via online webinars and at focused knowledge exchange and grant-writing workshops in Canada and Europe; (b) a knowledge exchange mission between the UK and North America, to share practical experience of building and deploying sensors, develop deep learning and computer vision for insects, and to build data analysis pipelines to support research applications; (c) a proof-of-concept field trial spanning the UK, Denmark, The Netherlands, Canada, USA and Panama. Testing automated sensors against traditional approaches in a range of situation; (d) dissemination of shared learning throughout this project and wider initiatives, building a new community of practice with a shared vision for automated insect monitoring technology to meet its worldwide transformational potential. Together, these activities will make a significant contribution to the broader, long-term goal of delivering the urgent need for a practical solution to monitor insects anywhere in the world, to ultimately support a more comprehensive assessment of the patterns and consequences of insect declines, and impact of interventions. By building international partnerships and research networks we will develop sustainable collaborations to address how to quantify the complexities of insect dynamics and trends in response to multiple drivers, and evaluate the ecological and human-linked causes and consequences of the changes. Crucially, this project is a vital stepping-stone to help identify solutions for addressing the global biodiversity crisis as well as research to understand the biological impacts of climate change and to design solutions for sustainable agriculture. Effective insect monitoring underpins the evaluation of future socio-economic, land-use and climate mitigation policies.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/V043811/1
    Funder Contribution: 497,214 GBP
    Partners: University of Toronto, University of Liverpool

    Coronaviruses are transmitted from an infectious individual through large respiratory droplets generated by coughing, sneezing or speaking. These infectious droplets are then transmitted to the mucosal surfaces of a recipient through inhalation of the aerosol or by contact with contaminated fomites such as surfaces or other objects. In healthcare settings, personal protective equipment (PPE) plays a crucial role in interrupting the transmission of highly communicable diseases such as COVID19 from patients to healthcare workers (HCWs). However, research has shown that PPE can also act as a fomite during the donning and doffing process as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can survive on these surfaces for up to three days. This creates a need for more effective PPE materials that can provide antiviral protection. In this proposal we aim to develop a dual action antiviral/antifouling coating to lower the risk of transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 to HCWs from COVID19 patients. This project will deliver antiviral/antifouling coatings that can be readily applied to PPE surfaces such as faceshields that are likely to encounter a high level of viral load and would be of great benefit to the health of clinical staff. Furthermore, this project has embedded into its planning a rapid pathway for optimisation, translation, and upscaling of manufacture to deliver a low-cost technology within a short timescale.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/V010131/1
    Funder Contribution: 7,776 GBP
    Partners: University of Exeter, UoC

    NERC: Jennifer Watts: NE/S007504/1

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/V019856/1
    Funder Contribution: 12,298 GBP
    Partners: University of Toronto, Cardiff University

    The human mouth contains many different types of microorganisms that are often found attached to oral surfaces in 'sticky' communities called biofilms. These microorganisms are held in close proximity and will therefore likely influence the behaviour of each other. The effects of this could result in increased microbial growth, the displacement of some microorganisms to other sites, the alteration of gene expression and potentially, the enabling of microorganisms to cause infection. A PhD research project being done by Ms Megan Williams at the School of Dentistry, Cardiff University has been exploring how a fungus called Candida albicans can interact both with acrylic surfaces (used to manufacture dentures) and also with bacterial species often found alongside Candida albicans. To date, the work has indicated that colonisation of acrylic coated with different fluids, including those generated from tobacco smoking, may change the way Candida albicans grows. Candida albicans can grow as round cells called yeast, or as filamentous forms called hyphae. It is the hyphal forms that are often considered more damaging to human tissue surfaces during infection. In addition, the research shows that when certain bacteria are grown on acrylic surfaces with Candida albicans, hyphal development is also triggered. This is important, as it may mean that occurrence of infection by Candida albicans is at least in part determined by the community composition of the bacteria present alongside Candida. To date, the methods used to study these effects have included fluorescent microscopy, where the Candida is stained to fluoresce a different colour to bacteria and the surface of attachment. Whilst this approach allows quantification of attachment and imaging of the different growth forms, it cannot determine strength of cell-cell-surface interactions. Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is a method that provides images through measuring forces acting between a moving probe and a surface. It is possible to attach different molecules and even whole bacteria to the AFM probe, and in doing so, we can measure interactions occurring between bacteria, and either Candida yeast or hyphae serving as the substrate. Dr Laurent Bozec and his team at the University of Toronto are experts in use of AFM, which is not available in the School of dentistry, Cardiff. The exchange therefore offers the PhD student the opportunity to learn a new experimental technique, generate important data for the PhD and benefit from unique networking experiences. The results generated from this proposal will greatly enhance the research output and complement existing findings of the PhD. Ultimately, this could help determine how bacteria physically interact with Candida albicans and trigger the development of hyphal filaments to facilitate infection.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/T014733/1
    Funder Contribution: 10,155 GBP
    Partners: University of Guelph, Lancaster University

    AHRC : Jessica Robins : AH/R504671/1 "Breaking Eggs" is an exciting project sharing knowledge between the UK and Canada. The project invites residents of Guelph, Wellington to take part in a series of hands-on workshops responding to the beginning of Our Food Future project, a city wide, 5-year project that aims to use technological innovation to make the region a sustainable food hub for Canada. Our Food Future is a multi-million-dollar project that will use technology to radically change the way food is grown, distributed and consumed. The project will make Guelph the world's first circular food city, using technology to make sure everyone has enough to eat and waste is eliminated, while restoring natural systems. The workshops will use creative methods to help local community members explore the wider project and examine avenues for their engagement. It will look at what opportunities' residents could take advantage of, and what challenges communities could face during this transition. Breaking Eggs will take place in the first year of the Our Food Future project so will give residents of different local communities a chance to be involved in shaping the project. The workshops will invite people from all parts of Guelph and Wellington County to take part in sharing ideas and creating a new future for the region. The lessons learned through the project will be brought back to the UK and the knowledge gathered will be shared so that other communities can look at ways they can engage in more sustainable food systems for their region.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/R012849/1
    Funder Contribution: 387,179 GBP
    Partners: University of Manitoba, Alfred Wegener Inst for Polar & Marine R, University of Bristol

    Following the polar amplification of global warming in recent decades, we have witnessed unprecedented changes in the coverage and seasonality of Arctic sea ice, enhanced freshwater storage within the Arctic seas, and greater nutrient demand from pelagic primary producers as the annual duration of open-ocean increases. These processes have the potential to change the phenology, species composition, productivity, and nutritional value of Arctic sea ice algal blooms, with far-reaching implications for trophic functioning and carbon cycling in the marine system. As the environmental conditions of the Arctic continue to change, the habitat for ice algae will become increasingly disrupted. Ice algal blooms, which are predominantly species of diatom, provide a concentrated food source for aquatic grazers while phytoplankton growth in the water column is limited, and can contribute up to half of annual Arctic marine primary production. Conventionally ice algae have been studied as a single community, without discriminating between individual species. However, the composition of species can vary widely between regions, and over the course of the spring, as a function of local environmental forcing. Consequently, current approaches for estimating Arctic-wide marine productivity and predicting the impact of climate warming on ice algal communities are likely inaccurate because they overlook the autecological (species-specific) responses of sea ice algae to changing ice habitat conditions. Diatom-ARCTIC will mark a new chapter in the study of sea ice algae and their production in the Arctic. Our project goes beyond others by integrating the results derived from field observations of community composition, and innovative laboratory experiments targeted at single-species of ice algae, directly into a predictive biogeochemical model. The use of a Remotely-Operated Vehicle during in situ field sampling gives us a unique opportunity to examine the spatio-temporal environmental controls on algal speciation in natural sea ice. Diatom-ARCTIC field observations will steer laboratory experiments to identify photophysiological responses of individual diatom species over a range of key growth conditions: light, salinity and nutrient availability. Additional experiments will characterise algal lipid composition as a function of growth conditions - quantifying food resource quality as a function of species composition. Furthermore, novel analytical tools, such as gas chromatography mass spectrometry and compound specific isotope analysis will be combined to better catalogue the types of lipid present in ice algae. Field and laboratory results will then be incorporated into the state-of-the-art BFM-SI biogeochemical model for ice algae, to enable accurate simulations of gross and net production in sea ice based on directly observed autecological responses. The model will be used to characterise algal productivity in different sea ice growth habitats present in the contemporary Arctic. By applying future climate scenarios to the model, we will also forecast ice algal productivity over the coming decades as sea ice habitats transform in an evolving Arctic. Our project targets a major research gap in Phase I of the CAO programme: the specific contribution of sea ice habitats to ecosystem structure and biogeochemical functioning within the Arctic Ocean. In doing so, Diatom-ARCTIC brings together and links the activities of ARCTIC-Prize and DIAPOD, while further building new collaborations between UK and German partners leading up to the 2019/20 MOSAiC campaign.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/P031277/1
    Funder Contribution: 692,318 GBP
    Partners: CNRC, University of Liverpool, DLR

    The vision for this research is to develop a novel toolset for flight simulation fidelity enhancement. This represents a step-change in simulator qualification, is well-timed making a significant contribution to the UoL initiated NATO STO AVT-296-RTG activity and will have an immediate impact through engagement with Industry partners. High fidelity modelling and simulation are prerequisites for ensuring confidence in decision making during aircraft design and development, including performance and handling qualities estimation, control law development, aircraft dynamic loads analysis, and the creation of a realistic piloted simulation environment. The ability to evaluate/optimise concepts with high confidence and stimulate realistic pilot behaviour are the kernels of quality flight simulation, in which pilots can train to operate aircraft proficiently and safely and industry can design with lower risk. Regulatory standards such as CS-FSTD(H) and FAA AC120-63 describe the certification criteria and procedures for rotorcraft flight training simulators. These documents detail the component fidelity required to achieve "fitness for purpose", with criteria based on "tolerances", defined as acceptable differences between simulation and flight, typically +/- 10% for the flight model. However, these have not been updated for several decades, while on the military side, the related practices in NATO nations are not harmonised and have often been developed for specific applications. Methods to update the models for improved fidelity are mostly ad-hoc and, without a strong scientific foundation, are often not physics-based. This research will provide a framework for such harmonisation removing the barriers to adopting physics-based flight modelling and will create new, more informed, standards. In this research two aspects of fidelity will be tackled, predictive fidelity (the metrics and tolerances in the standards) and perceptual fidelity (pilot opinion). The predictive fidelity aspect of the research will use System Identification techniques to provide a systematic framework for 'enhancing' a physics-based simulation model. The perceptual fidelity research will develop a rational, novel process for task-specific motion tuning together with a robust methodology for capturing pilots' subjective assessment of the overall fidelity of a simulator. Extensive use will be made of flight simulation and real-world flight tests throughout this project in both the predictive and perceptual fidelity research.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/V020471/1
    Funder Contribution: 12,390 GBP
    Partners: University of London, McGill University

    ESRC : Emily MacLeod : ES/P000592/1. This exchange provides me with the opportunity to develop my existing expertise within science identities research, and make links within the field of teacher education and teaching identities research. There is a critical shortage of teachers globally; an ongoing issue which has far-reaching and negative consequences for schools and their students. The teacher shortage in the UK, where I am conducting my PhD and where I myself was a teacher, is particularly acute. Government teacher recruitment targets in England have been missed for the last seven years. However, this shortage is not evenly spread, and raises significant social justice concerns. For example, it has been estimated that schools in England would need an additional 68,000 Black and minority ethnic teachers for the workforce to reflect the population it teaches. Science especially faces some of the worst teacher shortages. But incentives to attract more people into science teaching have so far failed to make a significant impact on this shortage, and have tended to be financial; based upon the assumption that science graduates can earn considerably more outside of the relatively low-paid role of teaching. Unlike the well-documented shortage of teachers in England, there is currently very little research into the scale of the teacher shortage in Canada, partly due to differences in governance and contexts across the different provinces. However, in contrast to the surplus of teachers seen in recent years, there are now signs of an increasing shortage of teachers. This summer in Québec, where I intend to complete this exchange, the government reported that there were over 250 empty teacher vacancies in the province, and there are concerns that Covid-19 is likely to make things worse. As in England, there is also a severe and growing underrepresentation of people of colour in Canada's teaching workforce. This is particularly worrying within the context of an increasingly diverse Canadian population. Also as in England, this shortage is not spread evenly. Science teachers are some of the most needed. However, unlike in England, teacher salaries across Canada are amongst the highest of the OECD community, and subject-specific incentives have yet to be used. The shortage of science teachers especially, seen in both England and Canada, is of particular concern given that there is a globally-recognised STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills shortage, likely to increase due to Covid-19. This growing demand for more young people studying and working in STEM will not be met without enough qualified science teachers. Yet in order to improve this situation, we need to better understand science teacher supply patterns. To date, research into teacher supply in science (and other disciplines) has been conducted by specialists in teacher education. From this we know that science teachers report becoming teachers not because they always wanted to, but after having had positive teaching-like experiences. We also know from existing science identities research from both the host and home supervisors that social and cultural influences work to influence whether and how people see different sciences roles as 'for me' or not. This exchange will help me to develop my research and communication skills whilst conducting comparative research to develop understandings of who does, and importantly who does not, want to become a science teacher in the UK and Canada, and why. I will build upon my existing expertise in science identity development amongst young people, and learn from the expertise of Dr Gonsalves and her colleagues in science teacher identities, and how teaching-like experiences can affect these identities. Combining these fields will help me to contribute to understandings of how people's identities shape how they feel about becoming science teachers.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/S016570/1
    Funder Contribution: 6,604,390 GBP
    Partners: Orange France Telecom, NOKIA BELL LABS FRANCE, University of Strathclyde, Adva Optical Networking Limited, Compound Semiconductor Centre, BU, University of Leeds, Airbus, Ushio, TSINGHUA UNIVERSITY...

    Given the unprecedented demand for mobile capacity beyond that available from the RF spectrum, it is natural to consider the infrared and visible light spectrum for future terrestrial wireless systems. Wireless systems using these parts of the electromagnetic spectrum could be classified as nmWave wireless communications system in relation to mmWave radio systems and both are being standardised in current 5G systems. TOWS, therefore, will provide a technically logical pathway to ensure that wireless systems are future-proof and that they can deliver the capacities that future data intensive services such as high definition (HD) video streaming, augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality will demand. Light based wireless communication systems will not be in competition with RF communications, but instead these systems follow a trend that has been witnessed in cellular communications over the last 30 years. Light based wireless communications simply adds new capacity - the available spectrum is 2600 times the RF spectrum. 6G and beyond promise increased wireless capacity to accommodate this growth in traffic in an increasingly congested spectrum, however action is required now to ensure UK leadership of the fast moving 6G field. Optical wireless (OW) opens new spectral bands with a bandwidth exceeding 540 THz using simple sources and detectors and can be simpler than cellular and WiFi with a significantly larger spectrum. It is the best choice of spectrum beyond millimetre waves, where unlike the THz spectrum (the other possible choice), OW avoids complex sources and detectors and has good indoor channel conditions. Optical signals, when used indoors, are confined to the environment in which they originate, which offers added security at the physical layer and the ability to re-use wavelengths in adjacent rooms, thus radically increasing capacity. Our vision is to develop and experimentally demonstrate multiuser Terabit/s optical wireless systems that offer capacities at least two orders of magnitude higher than the current planned 5G optical and radio wireless systems, with a roadmap to wireless systems that can offer up to four orders of magnitude higher capacity. There are four features of the proposed system which make possible such unprecedented capacities to enable this disruptive advance. Firstly, unlike visible light communications (VLC), we will exploit the infrared spectrum, this providing a solution to the light dimming problem associated with VLC, eliminating uplink VLC glare and thus supporting bidirectional communications. Secondly, to make possible much greater transmission capacities and multi-user, multi-cell operation, we will introduce a new type of LED-like steerable laser diode array, which does not suffer from the speckle impairments of conventional laser diodes while ensuring ultrahigh speed performance. Thirdly, with the added capacity, we will develop native OW multi-user systems to share the resources, these being adaptively directional to allow full coverage with reduced user and inter-cell interference and finally incorporate RF systems to allow seamless transition and facilitate overall network control, in essence to introduce software defined radio to optical wireless. This means that OW multi-user systems can readily be designed to allow very high aggregate capacities as beams can be controlled in a compact manner. We will develop advanced inter-cell coding and handover for our optical multi-user systems, this also allowing seamless handover with radio systems when required such as for resilience. We believe that this work, though challenging, is feasible as it will leverage existing skills and research within the consortium, which includes excellence in OW link design, advanced coding and modulation, optimised algorithms for front-haul and back-haul networking, expertise in surface emitting laser design and single photon avalanche detectors for ultra-sensitive detection.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: BB/W010720/1
    Funder Contribution: 3,000 GBP
    Partners: UBC, IFR

    Canada

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228 Projects, page 1 of 23
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/W004216/1
    Funder Contribution: 100,310 GBP
    Partners: CAF, FFI, Université Sherbrooke, McGill University, Space For Life Museum Montreal, STRI, UK Ctr for Ecology & Hydrology fr 011219, Naturalis Biodiversity Center, AU

    Insects are the little things that run the world (E.O. Wilson). With increasing recognition of the importance of insects as the dominant component of almost all ecosystems, there are growing concerns that insect biodiversity has declined globally, with serious consequences for the ecosystem services on which we all depend. Major gaps in knowledge limit progress in understanding the magnitude and direction of change, and hamper the design of solutions. Information about insects trends is highly fragmented, and time-series data is restricted and unrepresentative, both between different groups of insects (e.g. lepidoptera vs beetles vs flies) and between different regions. Critically, we lack primary data from the most biodiverse parts of the world. For example, insects help sustain tropical ecosystems that play a major role in regulating the global climate system and the hydrological cycle that delivers drinking water to millions of people. To date, progress in insect monitoring has been hampered by many technical challenges. Insects are estimated to comprise around 80% of all described species, making it impossible to sample their populations in a consistent way across regions and ecosystems. Automated sensors, deep learning and computer vision offer the best practical and cost-effective solution for more standardised monitoring of insects across the globe. Inter-disciplinary research teams are needed to meet this challenge. Our project is timely to help UK researchers to develop new international partnerships and networks to underpin the development of long-term and sustainable collaborations for this exciting, yet nascent, research field that spans engineering, computing and biology. There is a pressing need for new research networks and partnerships to maximize potential to revolutionise the scope and capacity for insect monitoring worldwide. We will open up this research field through four main activities: (a) interactive, online and face-to-face engagement between academic and practitioner stakeholders, including key policy-makers, via online webinars and at focused knowledge exchange and grant-writing workshops in Canada and Europe; (b) a knowledge exchange mission between the UK and North America, to share practical experience of building and deploying sensors, develop deep learning and computer vision for insects, and to build data analysis pipelines to support research applications; (c) a proof-of-concept field trial spanning the UK, Denmark, The Netherlands, Canada, USA and Panama. Testing automated sensors against traditional approaches in a range of situation; (d) dissemination of shared learning throughout this project and wider initiatives, building a new community of practice with a shared vision for automated insect monitoring technology to meet its worldwide transformational potential. Together, these activities will make a significant contribution to the broader, long-term goal of delivering the urgent need for a practical solution to monitor insects anywhere in the world, to ultimately support a more comprehensive assessment of the patterns and consequences of insect declines, and impact of interventions. By building international partnerships and research networks we will develop sustainable collaborations to address how to quantify the complexities of insect dynamics and trends in response to multiple drivers, and evaluate the ecological and human-linked causes and consequences of the changes. Crucially, this project is a vital stepping-stone to help identify solutions for addressing the global biodiversity crisis as well as research to understand the biological impacts of climate change and to design solutions for sustainable agriculture. Effective insect monitoring underpins the evaluation of future socio-economic, land-use and climate mitigation policies.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/V043811/1
    Funder Contribution: 497,214 GBP
    Partners: University of Toronto, University of Liverpool

    Coronaviruses are transmitted from an infectious individual through large respiratory droplets generated by coughing, sneezing or speaking. These infectious droplets are then transmitted to the mucosal surfaces of a recipient through inhalation of the aerosol or by contact with contaminated fomites such as surfaces or other objects. In healthcare settings, personal protective equipment (PPE) plays a crucial role in interrupting the transmission of highly communicable diseases such as COVID19 from patients to healthcare workers (HCWs). However, research has shown that PPE can also act as a fomite during the donning and doffing process as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can survive on these surfaces for up to three days. This creates a need for more effective PPE materials that can provide antiviral protection. In this proposal we aim to develop a dual action antiviral/antifouling coating to lower the risk of transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 to HCWs from COVID19 patients. This project will deliver antiviral/antifouling coatings that can be readily applied to PPE surfaces such as faceshields that are likely to encounter a high level of viral load and would be of great benefit to the health of clinical staff. Furthermore, this project has embedded into its planning a rapid pathway for optimisation, translation, and upscaling of manufacture to deliver a low-cost technology within a short timescale.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/V010131/1
    Funder Contribution: 7,776 GBP
    Partners: University of Exeter, UoC

    NERC: Jennifer Watts: NE/S007504/1

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/V019856/1
    Funder Contribution: 12,298 GBP
    Partners: University of Toronto, Cardiff University

    The human mouth contains many different types of microorganisms that are often found attached to oral surfaces in 'sticky' communities called biofilms. These microorganisms are held in close proximity and will therefore likely influence the behaviour of each other. The effects of this could result in increased microbial growth, the displacement of some microorganisms to other sites, the alteration of gene expression and potentially, the enabling of microorganisms to cause infection. A PhD research project being done by Ms Megan Williams at the School of Dentistry, Cardiff University has been exploring how a fungus called Candida albicans can interact both with acrylic surfaces (used to manufacture dentures) and also with bacterial species often found alongside Candida albicans. To date, the work has indicated that colonisation of acrylic coated with different fluids, including those generated from tobacco smoking, may change the way Candida albicans grows. Candida albicans can grow as round cells called yeast, or as filamentous forms called hyphae. It is the hyphal forms that are often considered more damaging to human tissue surfaces during infection. In addition, the research shows that when certain bacteria are grown on acrylic surfaces with Candida albicans, hyphal development is also triggered. This is important, as it may mean that occurrence of infection by Candida albicans is at least in part determined by the community composition of the bacteria present alongside Candida. To date, the methods used to study these effects have included fluorescent microscopy, where the Candida is stained to fluoresce a different colour to bacteria and the surface of attachment. Whilst this approach allows quantification of attachment and imaging of the different growth forms, it cannot determine strength of cell-cell-surface interactions. Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is a method that provides images through measuring forces acting between a moving probe and a surface. It is possible to attach different molecules and even whole bacteria to the AFM probe, and in doing so, we can measure interactions occurring between bacteria, and either Candida yeast or hyphae serving as the substrate. Dr Laurent Bozec and his team at the University of Toronto are experts in use of AFM, which is not available in the School of dentistry, Cardiff. The exchange therefore offers the PhD student the opportunity to learn a new experimental technique, generate important data for the PhD and benefit from unique networking experiences. The results generated from this proposal will greatly enhance the research output and complement existing findings of the PhD. Ultimately, this could help determine how bacteria physically interact with Candida albicans and trigger the development of hyphal filaments to facilitate infection.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/T014733/1
    Funder Contribution: 10,155 GBP
    Partners: University of Guelph, Lancaster University

    AHRC : Jessica Robins : AH/R504671/1 "Breaking Eggs" is an exciting project sharing knowledge between the UK and Canada. The project invites residents of Guelph, Wellington to take part in a series of hands-on workshops responding to the beginning of Our Food Future project, a city wide, 5-year project that aims to use technological innovation to make the region a sustainable food hub for Canada. Our Food Future is a multi-million-dollar project that will use technology to radically change the way food is grown, distributed and consumed. The project will make Guelph the world's first circular food city, using technology to make sure everyone has enough to eat and waste is eliminated, while restoring natural systems. The workshops will use creative methods to help local community members explore the wider project and examine avenues for their engagement. It will look at what opportunities' residents could take advantage of, and what challenges communities could face during this transition. Breaking Eggs will take place in the first year of the Our Food Future project so will give residents of different local communities a chance to be involved in shaping the project. The workshops will invite people from all parts of Guelph and Wellington County to take part in sharing ideas and creating a new future for the region. The lessons learned through the project will be brought back to the UK and the knowledge gathered will be shared so that other communities can look at ways they can engage in more sustainable food systems for their region.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/R012849/1
    Funder Contribution: 387,179 GBP
    Partners: University of Manitoba, Alfred Wegener Inst for Polar & Marine R, University of Bristol

    Following the polar amplification of global warming in recent decades, we have witnessed unprecedented changes in the coverage and seasonality of Arctic sea ice, enhanced freshwater storage within the Arctic seas, and greater nutrient demand from pelagic primary producers as the annual duration of open-ocean increases. These processes have the potential to change the phenology, species composition, productivity, and nutritional value of Arctic sea ice algal blooms, with far-reaching implications for trophic functioning and carbon cycling in the marine system. As the environmental conditions of the Arctic continue to change, the habitat for ice algae will become increasingly disrupted. Ice algal blooms, which are predominantly species of diatom, provide a concentrated food source for aquatic grazers while phytoplankton growth in the water column is limited, and can contribute up to half of annual Arctic marine primary production. Conventionally ice algae have been studied as a single community, without discriminating between individual species. However, the composition of species can vary widely between regions, and over the course of the spring, as a function of local environmental forcing. Consequently, current approaches for estimating Arctic-wide marine productivity and predicting the impact of climate warming on ice algal communities are likely inaccurate because they overlook the autecological (species-specific) responses of sea ice algae to changing ice habitat conditions. Diatom-ARCTIC will mark a new chapter in the study of sea ice algae and their production in the Arctic. Our project goes beyond others by integrating the results derived from field observations of community composition, and innovative laboratory experiments targeted at single-species of ice algae, directly into a predictive biogeochemical model. The use of a Remotely-Operated Vehicle during in situ field sampling gives us a unique opportunity to examine the spatio-temporal environmental controls on algal speciation in natural sea ice. Diatom-ARCTIC field observations will steer laboratory experiments to identify photophysiological responses of individual diatom species over a range of key growth conditions: light, salinity and nutrient availability. Additional experiments will characterise algal lipid composition as a function of growth conditions - quantifying food resource quality as a function of species composition. Furthermore, novel analytical tools, such as gas chromatography mass spectrometry and compound specific isotope analysis will be combined to better catalogue the types of lipid present in ice algae. Field and laboratory results will then be incorporated into the state-of-the-art BFM-SI biogeochemical model for ice algae, to enable accurate simulations of gross and net production in sea ice based on directly observed autecological responses. The model will be used to characterise algal productivity in different sea ice growth habitats present in the contemporary Arctic. By applying future climate scenarios to the model, we will also forecast ice algal productivity over the coming decades as sea ice habitats transform in an evolving Arctic. Our project targets a major research gap in Phase I of the CAO programme: the specific contribution of sea ice habitats to ecosystem structure and biogeochemical functioning within the Arctic Ocean. In doing so, Diatom-ARCTIC brings together and links the activities of ARCTIC-Prize and DIAPOD, while further building new collaborations between UK and German partners leading up to the 2019/20 MOSAiC campaign.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/P031277/1
    Funder Contribution: 692,318 GBP
    Partners: CNRC, University of Liverpool, DLR

    The vision for this research is to develop a novel toolset for flight simulation fidelity enhancement. This represents a step-change in simulator qualification, is well-timed making a significant contribution to the UoL initiated NATO STO AVT-296-RTG activity and will have an immediate impact through engagement with Industry partners. High fidelity modelling and simulation are prerequisites for ensuring confidence in decision making during aircraft design and development, including performance and handling qualities estimation, control law development, aircraft dynamic loads analysis, and the creation of a realistic piloted simulation environment. The ability to evaluate/optimise concepts with high confidence and stimulate realistic pilot behaviour are the kernels of quality flight simulation, in which pilots can train to operate aircraft proficiently and safely and industry can design with lower risk. Regulatory standards such as CS-FSTD(H) and FAA AC120-63 describe the certification criteria and procedures for rotorcraft flight training simulators. These documents detail the component fidelity required to achieve "fitness for purpose", with criteria based on "tolerances", defined as acceptable differences between simulation and flight, typically +/- 10% for the flight model. However, these have not been updated for several decades, while on the military side, the related practices in NATO nations are not harmonised and have often been developed for specific applications. Methods to update the models for improved fidelity are mostly ad-hoc and, without a strong scientific foundation, are often not physics-based. This research will provide a framework for such harmonisation removing the barriers to adopting physics-based flight modelling and will create new, more informed, standards. In this research two aspects of fidelity will be tackled, predictive fidelity (the metrics and tolerances in the standards) and perceptual fidelity (pilot opinion). The predictive fidelity aspect of the research will use System Identification techniques to provide a systematic framework for 'enhancing' a physics-based simulation model. The perceptual fidelity research will develop a rational, novel process for task-specific motion tuning together with a robust methodology for capturing pilots' subjective assessment of the overall fidelity of a simulator. Extensive use will be made of flight simulation and real-world flight tests throughout this project in both the predictive and perceptual fidelity research.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/V020471/1
    Funder Contribution: 12,390 GBP
    Partners: University of London, McGill University

    ESRC : Emily MacLeod : ES/P000592/1. This exchange provides me with the opportunity to develop my existing expertise within science identities research, and make links within the field of teacher education and teaching identities research. There is a critical shortage of teachers globally; an ongoing issue which has far-reaching and negative consequences for schools and their students. The teacher shortage in the UK, where I am conducting my PhD and where I myself was a teacher, is particularly acute. Government teacher recruitment targets in England have been missed for the last seven years. However, this shortage is not evenly spread, and raises significant social justice concerns. For example, it has been estimated that schools in England would need an additional 68,000 Black and minority ethnic teachers for the workforce to reflect the population it teaches. Science especially faces some of the worst teacher shortages. But incentives to attract more people into science teaching have so far failed to make a significant impact on this shortage, and have tended to be financial; based upon the assumption that science graduates can earn considerably more outside of the relatively low-paid role of teaching. Unlike the well-documented shortage of teachers in England, there is currently very little research into the scale of the teacher shortage in Canada, partly due to differences in governance and contexts across the different provinces. However, in contrast to the surplus of teachers seen in recent years, there are now signs of an increasing shortage of teachers. This summer in Québec, where I intend to complete this exchange, the government reported that there were over 250 empty teacher vacancies in the province, and there are concerns that Covid-19 is likely to make things worse. As in England, there is also a severe and growing underrepresentation of people of colour in Canada's teaching workforce. This is particularly worrying within the context of an increasingly diverse Canadian population. Also as in England, this shortage is not spread evenly. Science teachers are some of the most needed. However, unlike in England, teacher salaries across Canada are amongst the highest of the OECD community, and subject-specific incentives have yet to be used. The shortage of science teachers especially, seen in both England and Canada, is of particular concern given that there is a globally-recognised STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills shortage, likely to increase due to Covid-19. This growing demand for more young people studying and working in STEM will not be met without enough qualified science teachers. Yet in order to improve this situation, we need to better understand science teacher supply patterns. To date, research into teacher supply in science (and other disciplines) has been conducted by specialists in teacher education. From this we know that science teachers report becoming teachers not because they always wanted to, but after having had positive teaching-like experiences. We also know from existing science identities research from both the host and home supervisors that social and cultural influences work to influence whether and how people see different sciences roles as 'for me' or not. This exchange will help me to develop my research and communication skills whilst conducting comparative research to develop understandings of who does, and importantly who does not, want to become a science teacher in the UK and Canada, and why. I will build upon my existing expertise in science identity development amongst young people, and learn from the expertise of Dr Gonsalves and her colleagues in science teacher identities, and how teaching-like experiences can affect these identities. Combining these fields will help me to contribute to understandings of how people's identities shape how they feel about becoming science teachers.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/S016570/1
    Funder Contribution: 6,604,390 GBP
    Partners: Orange France Telecom, NOKIA BELL LABS FRANCE, University of Strathclyde, Adva Optical Networking Limited, Compound Semiconductor Centre, BU, University of Leeds, Airbus, Ushio, TSINGHUA UNIVERSITY...

    Given the unprecedented demand for mobile capacity beyond that available from the RF spectrum, it is natural to consider the infrared and visible light spectrum for future terrestrial wireless systems. Wireless systems using these parts of the electromagnetic spectrum could be classified as nmWave wireless communications system in relation to mmWave radio systems and both are being standardised in current 5G systems. TOWS, therefore, will provide a technically logical pathway to ensure that wireless systems are future-proof and that they can deliver the capacities that future data intensive services such as high definition (HD) video streaming, augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality will demand. Light based wireless communication systems will not be in competition with RF communications, but instead these systems follow a trend that has been witnessed in cellular communications over the last 30 years. Light based wireless communications simply adds new capacity - the available spectrum is 2600 times the RF spectrum. 6G and beyond promise increased wireless capacity to accommodate this growth in traffic in an increasingly congested spectrum, however action is required now to ensure UK leadership of the fast moving 6G field. Optical wireless (OW) opens new spectral bands with a bandwidth exceeding 540 THz using simple sources and detectors and can be simpler than cellular and WiFi with a significantly larger spectrum. It is the best choice of spectrum beyond millimetre waves, where unlike the THz spectrum (the other possible choice), OW avoids complex sources and detectors and has good indoor channel conditions. Optical signals, when used indoors, are confined to the environment in which they originate, which offers added security at the physical layer and the ability to re-use wavelengths in adjacent rooms, thus radically increasing capacity. Our vision is to develop and experimentally demonstrate multiuser Terabit/s optical wireless systems that offer capacities at least two orders of magnitude higher than the current planned 5G optical and radio wireless systems, with a roadmap to wireless systems that can offer up to four orders of magnitude higher capacity. There are four features of the proposed system which make possible such unprecedented capacities to enable this disruptive advance. Firstly, unlike visible light communications (VLC), we will exploit the infrared spectrum, this providing a solution to the light dimming problem associated with VLC, eliminating uplink VLC glare and thus supporting bidirectional communications. Secondly, to make possible much greater transmission capacities and multi-user, multi-cell operation, we will introduce a new type of LED-like steerable laser diode array, which does not suffer from the speckle impairments of conventional laser diodes while ensuring ultrahigh speed performance. Thirdly, with the added capacity, we will develop native OW multi-user systems to share the resources, these being adaptively directional to allow full coverage with reduced user and inter-cell interference and finally incorporate RF systems to allow seamless transition and facilitate overall network control, in essence to introduce software defined radio to optical wireless. This means that OW multi-user systems can readily be designed to allow very high aggregate capacities as beams can be controlled in a compact manner. We will develop advanced inter-cell coding and handover for our optical multi-user systems, this also allowing seamless handover with radio systems when required such as for resilience. We believe that this work, though challenging, is feasible as it will leverage existing skills and research within the consortium, which includes excellence in OW link design, advanced coding and modulation, optimised algorithms for front-haul and back-haul networking, expertise in surface emitting laser design and single photon avalanche detectors for ultra-sensitive detection.

  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: BB/W010720/1
    Funder Contribution: 3,000 GBP
    Partners: UBC, IFR

    Canada