A new Australia-China Research Centre for Light Metals (ACCLiM), to be headed by Monash University's Professor Xinhua Wu and Prof Xinming Zhang, Central-South University, China has been announced.

The ACCLiM is one of six centres to be founded with support from the Australia-China Science and Research Fund. It will research light-weight alloys and advanced manufacturing processes that increase customisability and produce almost no waste.

Through weight savings in component materials, the research will contribute to decreases in carbon emissions and fuel efficiency in all forms of transport. The airline industry will be one of the largest benefactors.

The development of high-value-add processes will also deliver a significant boost to manufacturing in both Australia and China. The dramatically increased efficiency of these processes will also help lengthen the lifetime of mineral reserves.
Partners in ACCLiM include the University of Queensland, University of Deakin, University of Melbourne, University of New South Wales, University of Sydney and Rosebank Engineering, o.d.t. Engineering, Grandfield technology and Magontec. Chinese partners include Central-South University, Southeast University, Beijing University of Technology, Baosteel, COMAC, Chalco, YinBang, Wuxi High-Tech District, Xi’An Aircraft Industry, China Space Technology Institute and EADS Innovation Works.

Monash Provost and Senior Vice-President, Professor Edwina Cornish said the centre facilitated vital international collaboration in a field of growing importance.

"Through the work of Professor Wu and her team, Monash University is at the forefront in building Australia's capacity in aerospace and advanced manufacturing research - a field that will ultimately deliver significant environmental and economic benefits," Professor Cornish said.

"This new collaboration will facilitate research and industry connections between Australia and China, thereby linking the best minds from both countries with the commercial stakeholders who will ultimately implement these research findings."

Professor Wu, from the Monash Department of Materials Engineering is an internationally-recognised leader in her field and also heads the ARC Centre of Excellence for Design in Light Metals.

"Our light metals research will ultimately lead to greener, cheaper transport systems - a vital outcome in today's increasingly connected world," Professor Wu said. 

"In the process, we will help initiate an aerospace industry in Australia, and further develop the industry in China. There is significant demand from our European and Chinese industrial partners, creating a rare opportunity for Australian companies to embrace the new technologies the centre will develop."