By Ijeoma Olorunfemi
Alex Ekwueme Federal Univeristy, Ndufu-Alike, Ikwo (AE-FUNAI) in Ebonyi has urged
tertiary institutions, scientists and researchers to use its facility for characterisation research.
The institution’s Dean of Engineering and Technology, Prof. Onuegbu Ugwu, made the call on Tuesday in an interview with
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Characterisation refers to the broad and general process by which a material’s structure and properties are probed and measured.
It is a fundamental process in the field of materials science, without which no scientific understanding of engineering materials can be ascertained.
Ugwu recalled that the school acquired the characterisation equipment in February through the intervention of the National Office for
Technology Acquisition and Promotion, in collaboration with PZ and supported by Federal Ministry of Science and Technology.
The equipment included Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy, Fourier Infrared Spectroscopy and Ultra Violet Visible Spectroscopy.
He said “just like most tertiary institutions in some countries and in Nigeria in particular, most times we lack critical infrastructure
needed for research and it affects universities in performing state-of-the-art research.
“At the moment, such equipment exists only in Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Kaduna State and that means researchers from
other parts of the country must travel to Kaduna State to conduct research.
“With this intervention however, it places us in good position to conduct research and to make it available to our colleagues in
other institutions around us because it has universal application.
“The facilities are major equipment that will boost capacity building and compete with any of such equipment from any part of the world.”
The dean commended NOTAP and PZ for the support, saying the institution needed more collaboration from industry operators and the
academia to bridge the gap between them.
“Research collaboration between universities and the academia is to make sure that universities provide relevant findings to
industrial needs and also for the industry to support the university system in that process,” he added.