The Ministry of Education, including the government, is promoting for the development of all the universities in the country using a variety of methods. Above all, YU’s Institute of Clean Technology was recently selected as the “R & D Research Institute” and is supported by the government through the “College Focus Institute Support Project.” The Institute of Clean Technology will receive a total support funding of 4.5 billion won over the next nine years. What kinds of effects will come from this government's support?
The establishment and objectives of the Institute of Clean Technology
The Institute of Clean Technology was established in March 2000 by YU and was created for the purpose of storing clean energy that is produced by dots-quantum solar battery and microorganism full cells. It has concentrated on the development and commercialization of clean energy material processes technology.
The meaning of clean technology
This technology fundamentally minimizes the occurrence of contaminants and removes these by reducing consumption of energy resources or using clean technology’s curative action which simply treats generated contaminants. Now many countries are naturally changing their cognitions that environmental issues must be resolved through this technology.
The process and selection of the Institute of Clean Technology as an R & D Research Institute
The YU Institute of Clean Technology was selected as an R & D Research Institute on the subject of promoting “Sustainable IT and Energy Materials and Processes Using Cleaner Nanotechnology and Biotechnology” last April. This is part of the College Focus Institute Support Project that the government practices. This project aims to increase the research foothold of universities on their campuses through infrastructure support by annexing colleges’ research institutes. In addition, it can help institutes to develop excellent budding researchers by increasing characterization and specialization. There are only 43 College annexed research institutes that are selected as R & D Research Institutes nationally.
The Institute of Clean Technology was selected as an R & D Research Institute by a process that lasted over three months. This institute submitted an application to the National Research Foundation of Korea on April 30 of this year and received its final confirmation on August 1st after an initial presentation of work along with a secondary evaluation. Only 5 of the 37 laboratory institutes received this confirmation.
A) We will research how to combine nanotechnology with biotechnology, developing energy-related materials and processes and industrializing this. In other words, the goal is making energy production and its storage material that takes advantages of industrial nano-biotechnology.
Interview with Professor Shim Jae-jin
Q) Our school was selected as a priority research laboratory on the subject of promoting sustainable IT and energy materials and processes using cleaner nanotechnology and biotechnology, what is this subject about?
We aim to produce energy in two ways. First, microbial fuel cell handles the contaminants of discarded microorganisms and produces electrical energy at the same time. Second, using quantum dot solar cells generate electricity. It is important to develop a system that can save electricity by using surplus electricity without wastage.
Existing pumped-storage hydroelectricity stations store water in the upper reservoir using surplus electricity at night. And stations increase their electricity generation during the peak hours of the day. However, this process is very limited and there is a large energy loss. However, nowadays secondary battery system is mainly used to convert this into chemical energy, not physical energy.
But it is difficult to obtain high output from secondary battery system, so supercapacitor, which stores energy itself, is more advantageous. Supercapacitor offers much higher storage capacities than the capacity of the secondary battery system. This allows them to be used over thousands of times.
Q) What is the Institute of Clean Technology’s main activity for students and the school?
A) The Institute of Clean Technology is introducing education and the latest technology regarding clean technology through clean technology symposiums and cleaner production training programs. It spreads the message of clean technology broadly. Since 2000, we have held a symposium on clean technology 13 times both domestically and internationally. We will hold domestic and international symposium more than one time at each year. Also, we plan to attract international associations while performing important research laboratory service.
Q) How will members of institute accomplish this task and make effort for the institute of clean technology?
Recently, due to the Fukushima nuclear crisis, human beings have been feeling the dangers of using nuclear energy. The use of healthier alternatives such as new and renewable energy is rising. The institute of clean technology is selected as a leader by the government because our researchers achieve excellent results. For a better future, we expect that the institute of clean technology will be the foundation of sustainable development regarding new & renewable energy.