Cooperation with the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) of the People’s Republic of China
On the basis of the Memorandum of Understanding on a Medium-Term Cooperation Plan (2014-2019) signed in July 2014, agreed between the Governments of Malta and China, MCST and the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) were nominated as the implementing agencies for cooperation within research sectors.
MCST and MOST, collaborating under the framework of the Joint Commission on Science and Technology, foreseen under the mentioned Memorandum of Understanding, developed a concept for a bilateral and collaborative programme for research.
MCST and MOST aim to:
Strengthen the scientific collaboration between the two countries and to increase the R&D activities;
Facilitate the transfer of technology;
Maintain a comprehensive, steady and long term cooperation through the support of researchers’ mobility, and the networking of industries, universities and research institutions to generate mutually beneficial win-win research.
MCST and MOST supports annual Calls for funding to support bilateral R&I project between Maltese and Chinese researchers. Each Call focuses on different thematic areas depending on the level of interest for collaboration between the two parties and ensuring alignment with Malta’s current needs and identified RIS3 priorities.
The 2019 Call had focused on providing support to the marine / maritime and transport sectors.
Owing to the level of interest received in the 2019 Call, the 2020 Call again supported the sectors of marine / maritime and transport. The 2020 Call also saw the addition of the Digital Technologies Sector.
Application follows a two-stage submission process. At pre-proposal stage, applicants are given the opportunity find Chinese partners to collaborate and work on a common research idea. The full-proposal stage will then allow further elaboration on the state of the art, methodology, implementation, and foreseen outcomes.
Surface Engineering for Additive Manufactured parts used in marine transportation (SEAM)
SEAM is a two-year research project funded by the Malta Council for Science and Technology (MCST) and the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), China, as per grant agreement number SINO-MALTA-2019-02. The project, led by Dr Ing. Ann Zammit and Prof. Jian Chen, has a budget of €350,000 and the two collaborating entities are the University of Malta (UM) and Southeast University (SEU), China. Through this project, researchers and academics at UM shall develop an international scientific collaboration with their Chinese counterparts. In addition, a number of researchers will be employed and will also be given the opportunity to conduct postgraduate (both MSc and PhD) studies.
The principal aim of SEAM is to determine the suitability of additive manufactured parts used in the marine transport industry. This aim will be achieved through the following specific objectives:
1. Optimising technologies for surface finish and internal residual stress of metallic parts manufactured by additive manufacture, followed by shot peening.
2. Designing, developing and applying anti-corrosion and anti-fouling surface engineering technologies on the 3D printed parts with the aim of improving the surface properties by inducing a homogenous microstructure, reducing porosity, increasing corrosion resistance and providing anti-fouling characteristics.
3. Building a prototype part, such as a ship propeller blade, used for marine transportation and testing it in a simulated marine environment