A meeting with the delegation of the Singapore Materials Research Society (MRS-S) was held at St Petersburg University. The discussion centred round the issues of establishing cooperation, as well as the organisation of a joint conference.

The Senior Vice-Rector of St Petersburg University, Ilya Dementyev, and the Deputy Rector for International Affairs of St Petersburg University, Sergey Andryushin, took part in the meeting.

ICMAT is one of the largest international conferences in the field of materials science. It has been organised by the Singapore Materials Research Society since 2001 and is held every two years. Each new conference becomes an advanced scientific platform for scientists from all over the world dealing with materials science, engineering and technology, and gives them the opportunity to share their experience and knowledge.

President of the Singapore Materials Research Society, Professor Bobba Venkateswara Rao Chowdary, said that the organisation is known for its numerous activities, despite the fact that it was founded only 19 years ago. One of its most important projects is the International Conference on Materials for Advanced Technologies (ICMAT). There have been nine conferences, and they have been visited by more than 23 thousand participants, including 25 Nobel Prize winners and hundreds of outstanding speakers. 3,500 researchers from around the world has already confirmed their participation in the jubilee, tenth conference. Professor Chowdary said that in recent years the level of interaction with Russian scientists has significantly decreased, although closer cooperation will benefit both countries. Singapore researchers achieved significant results in the field of materials science. Two of the universities that train specialists in this field - the National University of Singapore and the Nanyang Technological University - occupy 11th and 12th positions in the QS rating. Professor Chowdary added that participation in the conference will be a good basis for strengthening the relationship between scientists from Russia and Singapore, and therefore invites leading researchers in the field of materials science to participate in it.

The tenth international conference on materials for advanced technology will be held in June next year in Singapore. Participants can submit an abstract of the article from September 1, 2018 to January 31, 2019 for subsequent publication.

Aleksandr Tarasov, Acting Head of the Research Support Service, presented the competences of St Petersburg University in the field of materials science. He explained that nanotechnology and materials science are one of the key areas of the University Development Programme. At present, half of the research centres in the Research Park are developing in this area. In St Petersburg University, there are more than 100 scientific groups working on creating new materials for biomedicine and searching for new sources of energy. Some of the largest laboratories are headed by the leading scientists who are winners of the Russian Federation Government mega-grants contest: Ruslan Valiev, Aleksey Kavokin and Detlef Banemann. Over the past three years, scientists of St Petersburg University have published over 1800 science articles in this field in journals indexed in international scientometric databases. Nine articles were written in co-authorship with Singaporean researchers.

During the past three years, 1800 science articles in the field of materials science have been published by St Petersburg University scientists in journals indexed in international scientometric databases.

During the meeting, the possibility of organising a joint symposium of St Petersburg University and the  Singapore Materials Research Society was discussed. Researchers from Russian and Singaporean universities are welcome to participate.

Following the results of the meeting, it was decided to inform St Petersburg University scientists about the opportunity to participate in ICMAT conference and to prepare a draft agreement between the University and the Singapore Materials Research Society, which will take into account not only research cooperation, but also participation of students in conferences and academic exchanges of the parties.