New Zealand team visits IIT Delhi to expand research collaboration

A delegation of researchers from New Zealand's University of Canterbury paid a visit to Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT-Delhi) to explore renewable energy research developments and strengthen partnerships in a series of workshops focused on green hydrogen.

This collaboration could help India and New Zealand reach renewable energy goals and bring an end to energy poverty.

According to the New Zealand Education press release, "IIT-Delhi Dean of Research and Development Professor Naresh Bhatnagar says an international commitment to developing renewable energy solutions needs enthusiastic and talented international partners."

"If we find synergies and ways to get together as international partners, then the sum will be greater than the parts. We see this in our international collaborations: papers are cited more, perspectives are different, and the vibrancy of the campus and research grows," he said.

Recently published IIT-Delhi research, 'Mission Energy Access for a Just and Sustainable Future for all,' supports the global goal of ending energy poverty by 2030.

The authors noted that it is a betrayal of the global commitment to ending energy poverty that so many global citizens remain unable to access reliable energy.

The press release stated, "India is committed to aspirational climate goals, including a government commitment to be energy independent by 2047. Renewable energy and green hydrogen will play a significant role in this."

An expert in energy and hydrogen technologies, University of Canterbury Professor Aaron Marshall was delighted to join the delegation and share his research, which explores energy equity.

Further, his research aims to develop a new type of electrolyser, a tool that splits water into hydrogen and oxygen, to produce green hydrogen energy in a more cost-effective way by replacing noble metals, metals that are resistant to corrosion and oxidation.

"Energy is required to produce hydrogen. Currently, the best electrolysers are about 75% efficient, but they cost a lot to build and use expensive noble metals," Professor Marshall says in the New Zealand Education press release.

The conversations will continue when IIT-Delhi Assistant Professor Suryanarayana Vikrant Karra, an expert in Materials Science, visits the University of Canterbury later in the year on an IIT-Delhi India-New Zealand Centre Fellowship.

Moreover, Christchurch, New Zealand, has emerged as a hub for developing green fuel technology.

University of Canterbury researchers work closely with industry, including Christchurch International Airport, the only net zero-emissions airport in New Zealand; Fabrum, an innovative green hydrogen producer; and Liquium, a producer of clean ammonium fuel that has the potential to decarbonise heavy industries such as shipping.

University of Canterbury Assistant Vice-Chancellor Engagement Brett Berquist led the delegation in India and outlined the unique opportunities a partner in New Zealand can provide.

"As a university and nation, we are focused on collaboration, sharing unique approaches, and scaling the benefits for other much larger countries.

Following our very productive visit to IIT-Delhi, we look forward to welcoming our colleagues from India to the University of Canterbury in Christchurch later in the year to strengthen our relationship and continue the conversation to end energy poverty," says Mr Berquist.

Researchers at the University of Canterbury are leading two initiatives to advance green hydrogen energy in Aotearoa, New Zealand, in partnership with the German Aerospace Centre. In 2022, the projects received USD million in funding.

Rebecca Peer and Jannik Haas are leading a project that aims to develop an integrated energy system model and strategy for New Zealand that could provide sustainable transport, heating, and electricity. Research on our future energy needs

Project 2 includes a project by Professor Aaron Marshal to develop a new type of electrolyser, a tool that splits water into hydrogen and oxygen--to produce hydrogen energy in a more cost-effective way. Creating cost-effective green energy

Professor Matt Watson, in collaboration with the Robinson Research Institute, is investigating the technical and economic feasibility of using hydrogen to produce direct reduced iron (DRI) from New Zealand's abundant irons and resources as a way of decarbonising the steel industry.

Professor Andy Nicol and Associate Professor David Dempsey received USD 11.8 million (2022) from the New Zealand Government's Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) to explore how hydrogen can be safely stored to be useful as an energy source. Green hydrogen powering the future of New Zealand

Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao (ENZ) is the government agency responsible for taking New Zealand's education experiences to the world. ENZ promotes a New Zealand education as one that teaches students to be critical thinkers, problem solvers and lifelong learners, which will help them succeed in their future careers and create a positive impact on the world.

With approximately 100 staff in 18 locations around the world, ENZ works closely with New Zealand's diverse education sector, including schools, English language providers, private training establishments, Te Pukenga (Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics), universities; and internationally with NZ Inc. agencies, government agencies and education providers to encourage sustainable growth and identify opportunities.


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