WELLINGTON, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- Funding has been awarded for 68 new science research projects that will benefit New Zealand environmentally, economically, and socially, Science and Innovation Minister Paul Goldsmith said on Wednesday.
The funding, totaling 248 million NZ dollars (181 million U.S. dollars) over the next five years, has been invested through the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's 2017 Endeavor Fund, Goldsmith said.
Examples of the successful proposals include developing hybrid-electric aircraft, exploring new technologies to improve weather forecasting, and developing new charging technology for electric vehicles while parked or moving, he said.
The 2017 Endeavor Fund round will be invested in 41 projects under the "Smart Ideas" initiative which have a high potential to benefit New Zealand over the next three years.
"The Endeavor Fund is an important tool in the government's ten-year vision for a highly dynamic New Zealand science system," Goldsmith said.
The Fund looks for "transformative initiatives" that propose excellent research and have strong potential to improve a range of outcomes for New Zealand, such as marine ecosystems and hybrid energy, according to the minister.
"This year, the quality of applications was exceptional, and a diverse range of applications were received which will address some really important issues facing New Zealand," he said.