Dr. Junbeom Park is a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute of Energy and Climate Research, Fundamentals of Electrochemistry (IEK-9). In his blog article, the native South Korean reports on his time at Forschungszentrum Jülich and, in particular, on a workshop that not only opened up opportunities for collaboration, but was also balm for the soul after the long Corona period.

This blog has been written by Dr. Junbeom Park.

I joined the Forschungszentrum Jülich in March 2020 when COVID-19 started interrupting all of us. As the restrictions were getting harder and harder, I felt much loneliness and kept losing my collaboration chances even within the same institute. Finally, after almost 3-long-years of fighting against COVID-19, most restrictions were released, and fortunately, I had the opportunity to attend the FZJ-NST workshop as a face-to-face meeting. As my home country is Korea, I was also quite excited about this workshop.

The workshop consisted of three parts; 1) an introduction to collaboration, including funding information and recent experiences, 2) scientific presentations with collaborative points, and 3) interesting lab tours on PGI-9 (semiconductor) and IEK-14 (energy conversion). From the first part, I heard about the impact of collaboration and variation of collaboration funding from the government and institute levels. In the second part, I watched the commons of scientific interests between Germany and Korea with a variation of how to approach solving problems. Finally, from the last part, I experienced how the research can be transferred to the industry.

I was most fascinated by the last part because of the huge scale comparable to the industrial scale. At PGI-9, I saw the long nanocluster facility (10 meters long, maybe much longer). Nanoclusters can fabricate various structures of semiconductor material and analyze it into nanoscale within continuous high-vacuum chambers, as the high-level cleanness of semiconductor production is the most important point for electronics. At IEK-14, I saw the huge energy conversion facility from water to Hydrogen & Oxygen via electrochemistry (applying up to 4,000 A, while just a few A for cell phone chargers). The guide explained that it is also installed and running in FZJ’s LLEC (living lab energy campus). Both facilities showed how the research connects science to industry and human life.

After attending the workshop, I could refill my enthusiasm for research and communicating with people. So, I will try to share my idea and hear other people’s ideas widely to keep and enhance my enthusiasm. And I appreciate all the organizing members for managing this wonderful workshop.

More information about the FZJ-NST Workshop 2022: https://www.fz-juelich.de/en/ue/news/news/workshop_korea_germany

Further information on international relations at Forschungszentrum Jülich: https://www.fz-juelich.de/en/ue/departments/relations/international-relations

Calls: https://www.fz-juelich.de/en/ue/news/news/fzj-nst-bilateral-cooperation-programme

More information about NST – The National Research Council of Science and Technology (NST): https://www.nst.re.kr/eng/index.do

Contact person for international relations for Asia and Oceania: Dr. Hyunji Park

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