Twenty-five years of scientific and technological co-operation with Germany
was marked recently with a visit to the University of Canterbury from a
delegation of German scientists and officials.
The New Zealand-German Agreement on Scientific and Technological
Cooperation (STC) has been the basis for a successful partnership that has
bridged the geographical distance between the two nations, leading to
student and scientist exchanges and a number of collaborative projects.
During a day at the University of Canterbury, the German delegation of six
visited the National Centre for Research on Europe, Gateway Antarctica and
two joint research projectsóthe Canterbury ring lasers and air pollution
research led by Professor Andy Sturman (Geography).
Delegation leader, Ms Vera Stercken of the Ministry for Education and
Researchís International Division, said the STC agreement had brought
tangible benefits to both countries, generated a large number of
co-operative projects, and was a model for collaborative links with distant
A visit to the ring lasers in the Cashmere Cavern was a highlight of the
visit for the German delegation, where they were shown around by Professor
Professor Geoff Stedman
and Dr David Wiltshire, all from the Physics and Astronomy Department.
The Canterbury Ring Laser project began in 1987, using the properties of
ring lasers to measure local variations in Earth rotation and investigate
some fundamental questions about physical forces.
In 1988 the prototype ring laser was installed in the Cashmere Cavern,
a World War Two
command post bunker that had lain forgotten for 42 years
before its rediscovery by then-TVNZ journalist Jeff Field.