18 November 2016

Eight LiU researchers will each receive approx. SEK 3 million for research relating to sustainable development. One of the research projects will answer the question: Which is better and cheaper: renovation or demolition and new construction.

HållbarhetFormas, The Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning, received 1,100 applications for funding last spring. Of the 220 successful applications, seven were from Linköping University. Formas’ open call is divided into three sections: R&D projects, mobility support (to help new researchers visit new research environments) and R&D projects for the research leaders of the future. The 220 funded projects will receive a total of SEK 654 million.

Renovation or new construction 

Professor Bahram Moshfegh, from the Division of Energy Systems, will receive approximately SEK 3 million to help the state, regional and local governments make intelligent decisions with regard to their special-purpose buildings, e.g. buildings used as schools, pre-schools, for elderly care, etc.

Most of these properties were built before 1980, their energy usage is high and the premises are often worn out, out-dated and not well suited to the activities they house. The research will give the property owners a method by which they can see the life-cycle costs for renovation and for new construction. This includes economic, environmental and technical factors, as well as the consequences for the operations.

Bahram Moshfegh, professor EnergisystemPhoto credit: Monica Westman“Development and upgrading of the operations also places demands on the organisation, on working methods, physical environment, logistics and, equally important, image. And this can require unconventional solutions. In order to take into account how the property can be renovated, a new analysis method is required,” says Bahram Moshfegh.

Professor Victoria Wibeck, from the Department of Thematic Studies - Environmental Change, will receive approx. SEK 3 million to analyse Swedish initiatives to boost sustainability, and Sweden’s role as a country at the forefront. Per Jensen, professor of ethology, secured funding for work aimed at understanding the stress reactions of fowl, by integrating genetics, behaviour and physiology.

Research mobility support 

For research mobility support, three LiU researchers will receive funding. Björn Berglund, post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Medicine, will study genes and bacteria associated with antibiotic resistance in China. Sepehr Shakeri Yekta, post-doc at the Department of Thematic Studies - Environmental Change, will study the role of sulphides in the breakdown of lipids, to improve the yield of biogas in municipal wastewater treatment plants. Martin Johnsson, post-doc at the Department of Biology, is to receive almost SEK 4 million. He will study the genetic foundations of pig and fowl traits at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.

Research leaders of the future 

For R&D projects for the research leaders of the future, funding was secured by Jianwu Sun, Senior Research Engineer at the Semiconductor Materials Division, and by Anders Hansson, senior lecturer at Department of Thematic Studies - Technology and Social Change. Jianwu Sun will study an innovative photoelectrode that uses solar energy to convert carbon dioxide and water to fuel; Anders Hansson will investigate the challenges and possibilities of a large-scale implementation of carbon dioxide storage from biomass.