Congratulations to our new SAAFE scholars

AINSE wish to extend our congratulations to Meltem Bayrak and Sachini Pathirannahalage, our two new Scholarship AINSE ANSTO French Embassy (SAAFE) recipients for 2020.

The SAAFE program supports Early Career Researchers at PhD and postdoctoral levels to travel from Australia to France – and from France to Australia – to initiate sustainable research networks and linkages to support Australia and France in research and innovation.

Meltem Bayrak, PhD student of RMIT University and CSIRO, is seeking to better understand the role of food structure in controlling digestion, using gels of casein, a family of common milk proteins, as a model system. The SAAFE award will support her visit to the Joint Research Laboratory of Science and Technology of Milk and Eggs at INRAE-AGROCAMPUS OUEST in Rennes, France. There, Meltem will combine neutron-scattering data of the casein gels obtained at ANSTO’s Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering with studies of digestive enzyme diffusion behaviour, using a recently-developed French microscopy technique involving the fluorescent labelling of the enzyme pepsin.

Sachini Pathirannahalage, PhD student at RMIT University and École Normale Supérieure (ENS) de Lyon, is helping to realise the potential of Ionic Liquids as designer solvents with a wide variety of scientific applications by seeking to understand the behaviour of Ionic Liquids when they are combined with molecular solvents. This work involves a mixture of computational and experimental techniques, including the use of the Small-Angle X-ray Scattering facilities at ANSTO’s Australian Synchrotron to investigate the structural properies of ionic liquid mixtures. The SAAFE award will support a second visit to the Theoretical Chemistry group at ENS de Lyon in Lyon, France, where Sachini will use their specialised isothermal titration calorimeters to study the thermodynamics of micelle formation in ionic liquid mixtures.

Since 2017, the SAAFE program has fostered research collaborations between France and Australia by enabling 15 students to undertake international research internships within the research areas of Human Health, Environment, and the Nuclear Fuel Cycle.

For further information, please visit our SAAFE page.