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CEDAT Annual Report 2020

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Africa Centre of Excellence in Materials Product Development and Nanotechnology (MAPRONANO). The Center was developed out of the need to strengthen research and training in the thematic areas of materials science and engineering, nanotechnology and nanomedicine in order to develop human resource capacity in applied science engineering disciplines for the development of the great lakes region.

MAPRONANO ACE offers highly specialized short courses in welding technology, health safety engineering, Oil & gas, Monoclonal and Nanobodies generation, Bioinformatics & Next Generation sequencing techniques. Nanomedicine Program is implemented in partnership with College of Health Sciences (MakCHS).

The centre is supported by the World Bank to the tune of USD 6 million.

The centre has registered a number of success/ achievements during the last 3 years, some of which include;

Student Training

  • 1 PhD student & 110 MSc students were enrolled in the academic year 2019/2020.
  • 50 students attended the Short Course in Tablet development of which 22 were regional students from University of Nairobi.

MOUs generated

  • 3 MOUs with Vaal University, Sefako Makgatho University of health Sciences South Africa and industrial partner CODEK Engineering Ltd have been signed, budgets and work plans submitted

Peer Reviewed publications

  • 7 peer reviewed publications in high impact journals have been published and 4 conference papers have been presented by the faculty and students.

Industry Engagement

  • MAPRONO ACE conducted industry engagement and student placements in the Eastern and Western region to promote University-private partnerships. A total of 30 manufacturing industries have participated and over 20 internship placements have been secured for the students.

Gender Awareness and Career Guidance in High School

  • MAPRONANO ACE conducted career guidance and gender awareness in high schools in Eastern and Western Uganda to encourage students mostly girls to take up STEM subjects. Over 35 high schools and over 1,500 students participated.

Revenue Generation (Grants/Contracts at Various Stages)

MAPRONANO ACE won several grant awards from Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF) and COVID19 Emergency Fund for:-

  • Viral load determination and antibody profiling among Covid-19 patients UGX 60,000,000 ($16,216.2), Prof. Charles Ibingira (PI)
  • Perfecting the design and testing the feasibility of disinfecting gloves (D-Gloves) UGX 60,000,000 ($16,216.2) Prof. John Baptist Kirabira (PI)
  • Valorization of cassava peels for abatement of active pharmaceutical contaminants from water systems in Uganda UGX 219,720,000 ($59,383.7) Prof. John Baptist Kirabira (PI)
  • Up-cycling plastic wastes by incorporation of agricultural residues for the development of environmentally friendly packaging products, UGX 104,310,000 ($28,191.9) Dr. Michael Lubwama (PI)
  • Nanobody based point of care diagnostic kit for cervical cancer UGX 194,000,000 ($52,432) Prof. Charles Ibingira (PI)

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Engineering, Art & Tech

MAPRONANO Short Course in AI, ML & Bioinformatics

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Some of the students that took part in the Inaugural Intel AI Academy Workshop on Machine Learning and Deep Learning Fundamentals pose for a photo on 22nd November 2019, CEDAT, Makerere University.

The African Center of Excellence in Materials Product Development & Nanotechnology (MAPRONANO ACE), College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT), Makerere University in partnership with the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI)’s African Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Data Sciences (ACE), Tel Aviv University, Israel, the Colleges of Health Sciences (CHS) and Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS) and Teesside University, UK invites applications for the Short Course Training in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and Bioinformatics.

The course will be run virtually from 4th to 7th October 2021

Please submit all applications to: ace[at]idi.co.ug, mapronanocedatmak[at]gmail.com, bmujuni7[at]gmail.com including a One Page motivation statement indicating why you are interested in attending by 27th September 2021

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Call for Scholarship Application: CAMA Post-grad Research Assistantship at CEDAT

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The Main Entrance of the New Building, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT), Makerere University, Kampala Uganda. Date taken: 8th July 2014.

The Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences (HKA) Germany, Makerere University, University of Nairobi (UoN) and Mekelle University (MU) Ethiopia have started a 4 year R&D project “Collaboration for Active Mobility in Africa-CAMA” under the program “Partnerships for sustainable solutions in sub-Sahara Africa“. The Project which is being funded by both the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), aims to better capture the requirements of the pedestrians and cyclists and to illustrate their needs using digital surveys and crowd mapping approaches.

To facilitate the development and uptake of tailor-made solutions to promote active mobility, the project will utilise learning alliances (bringing together researchers, community representatives, decision makers and experts from the field) to prepare real-life experiments (living labs) and test innovative solutions. To achieve the aforementioned objective, the project intends to utilize some of the resources to recruit a PhD Student who will double as project admin for the project.

In this regard, the CAMA Uganda project is pleased to invite Ugandans to make applications for a the Post Graduate Research Assistantship Position at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT), Makerere University. Under this program you will be required to register as a PhD. Student at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (focusing on Non Motorised Traffic), which is subject to meeting the admission requirements of Makerere University. You will also be required to undertake Administration and Research project support.

The deadline for application is 8th September 2021.

How to Apply

Interested candidates can submit the following (i) up-to-date curriculum vitae/resume (of no more than 3 pages) in pdf (ii) supporting testimonials (iii) a one-page letter outlining their interest and motivation while highlighting a potential challenge in Non Motorised Traffic.

By email to camauganda[at]gmail.com and copied to civil[at]cedat.mak.ac.ug

Only applicants who meet the minimum requirements will be notified.

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Minister Monica Musenero Unveils Locally-made Diesel Engine

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Hon. Dr. Monica Musenero (3rd L) with the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (2nd L), Principal CEDAT-Prof. Henry Alinaitwe (4th L), college leadership, MAPRONANO’s Prof. John Baptist Kirabira (7th L), Kiira Motors’ Mr. Paul Isaac Musasizi (R), Kevoton Motions Engineering Team (in white) and other officials at the launch on 19th August 2021, Freedom Square, Makerere University.

By Betty Kyakuwa

It was a show of innovations geared towards mechanisation of farming processes as the Minister for Science, Technology and Innovations, Dr. Monica Musenero, launched locally made engines today August 19, 2021.

A team of researchers from the African Centre of Excellence for Material science and nanotechnology (MAPRONANO) partnered with artisans from Kevoton Engineering, to design and assemble a diesel engine, the first of its kind in Uganda.

It is a single cylinder 4 stroke engine  with 13 horse power and consumes 1 litre of fuel per hour. The engine is a water-cooled and therefore does not heat up.

The engines are able to run a generator and a water pump to facilitate irrigation on farms. The generator, is single phase and can therefore be used to power home appliances and small workshops.

According to Mr. Mubiru Rogers of Kevoton Engineering, work on the engines started in 2017, but they were not able to make much progress until 2019 when they partnered with MAPRONANO ACE. The centre of excellence was then able provide training and technical advice, designing and student attachments to the project.

The Minister commended the MAPRONANO team, led by Prof. John Baptist Kirabira, for various innovations that the team in churning out, which included a sanitizer made in Makerere, solar panel slasher, and a mini tractor. 

Dr. Musenero challenged researchers to have a mindset change and also change the pedagogy to reposition theory to practical works. “We need to teach the students knowing that they are going to design and develop an engine or a brake system,” Dr. Musenero emphasised.  She encouraged innovators to ensure their products do not stay on the selves, saying the biggest role of science and innovation is economical.  The Minister said, for this reason, PRESIDE which she chairs focused on equipping laboratories in universities so as ensure that scientists receive the facilitation that they require. “Research is like a river which needs an outflow and the Ministry is here to provide that outflow,” she said.

She advised the university to prioritise certain areas of research when it comes to grants instead of awarding small grants to different projects which only end up being a drop in the ocean. Dr. Musenero thanked the President for his continued support and belief in science and technology.

The minister advised that the prototypes be refined so that they are genderised to allow women to be able to operate the generator and water pump.

The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, called on the minister to support the introduction of an innovation park in Makerere University, saying the park would be able to spinoff companies. Giving an example of Instabul University, the Vice Chancellor said the university has been able to produce 300 companies over the last one year, saying Makerere University should be supported to do the same.  

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