UNN students get N12m research grant

Students engaged in research

About 12 student research groups at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) received N12 million on Wednesday, as a grant for research in innovation and entrepreneurial activities.

Emenike Ejiogu, the Director of the Africa Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Power Energy and Development (ACE-SPED), disclosed this in Nsukka, Enugu State, at an event to issue certificates and disburse the grants to the benefiting groups.

Mr Ejiogu said the UNN management and the ACE-SPED are collaborating on the project.

He said that many student research groups in the institution applied for the grant, but only 12 were selected, considering the relevance of their proposal to innovations, entrepreneurship, and technology transfer to society.

“The 12 student research groups were selected because they generated innovation, entrepreneurship and knowledge transfer ideas for sustainable energy and power development.

“Their research will lead to significant commercialisation and equally create solutions toward solving some challenges in the energy and power sector of our society,” he said.

He said ACE-SPED seed grants for sustainable energy and power sought to encourage student researchers in entrepreneurial skills and innovation across sub-Saharan Africa.

Mr Ejiogu, the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at UNN, said the centre would monitor and evaluate the groups’ performance, adding that those who did well would receive more grants.

Their research will lead to significant commercialisation and equally create solutions toward solving some challenges in the energy and power sector of our society.

The Director explained that the centre, as a World-Bank sponsored organisation, focused on sustainable energy, electric power system development, renewable energy, waste-to-energy conversion, energy conservation, energy management, and energy resources.

Victor Aigbodion, ACE-SPED’s industrial liaison officer, said the groups were expected to deliver their research results within six months.

He explained that some of the items the research groups would produce as contained in their proposals include a 1kv solar generator, bioethanol from agro-waste, and kith to test for ripe watermelon, among others.

Mr Aigbodion said the selected 12 groups should be lucky as his committee received more than 30 applications from different departments’ research groups in UNN.

According to Mr Aigbodion, the N1 million would be paid in three instalments of N500,000, N300,000 and N200,000.

Responding on behalf of other groups, Modesta Eze, a member of the group that will produce bioethanol, and Innocent Okolie, who is of the group to produce a 1kv solar generator, pledged their commitment to deliver within six months. (NAN)

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