A YEAR IN SINGAPORE WITH THE DESCARTES PROGRAMME

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Amine Ammar, a lecturer in Angers, has been in Singapore since 1 September as part of the DesCartes scheme.

WHAT IS YOUR ASSIGNMENT IN SINGAPORE?

I am participating in the DesCartes programme, which is led by CNRS's subsidiary in Singapore (learn more) with partners that include CNRS, several French institutions including Arts et Métiers, several Singaporean universities as well as multiple industrial players such as CETIM, ESI Group and THALES. A team of 80 researchers from France and 80 from Singapore are working on this programme. The government of Singapore and CNRS are providing the funding. The scientific coordinator is Francisco Chinesta, a professor specialising in digital mechanics and artificial intelligence at PIMM (learn more).
DesCartes develops hybrid AI methods to assist in real-time decision making to respond to complex situations related to critical urban systems. This research will be applied to urban transport and energy management and will help forecast needs in future transport networks, factories and smart buildings. 

WHAT SPECIFIC PROJECTS ARE YOU WORKING ON?

I am collaborating on a work project to produce a demonstrator on the guidance of drones in cities as well as on using imaging to detect areas with flaws and recognizing their thermomechanical properties. 
The first demonstrator simulates how wind impacts drones in cities and what can be done to control their speed locally. The second demonstrator involves pipeline corrosion and distortion. Other projects are also being implemented.
In this endeavour, I am leading a team of four postdoctoral fellows and Master's students.
We presented the first results from our work with Francisco Chinesta at the event held for the DesCartes project's first anniversary.

WHAT HAS THIS EXPERIENCE OFFERED YOU?

It's very enriching because I have met other researchers from CNRS or EC during my time abroad. We share new knowledge with each other, especially in mathematics and AI.
And my work environment is comfortable since I am not doing any teaching as part of my CNRS assignment, so I can focus on my research activities.
Life in Singapore is pleasant as well. It's a multicultural city where you can come across Malaysians, Indians, Chinese, European and Americans in an atmosphere of mutual respect. Life is very secure, and trust in others is a shared value.
This international experience is not just a bonus on my CV, it is an unforgettable moment in my life.

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