KIST Hosts 7th KAERI-KIST Joint Symposium
On October 30, at its headquarters in Seoul, the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) partnered with the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) in hosting the 7th KAERI-KIST Joint Symposium. The two institutes have been co-hosting such symposiums since 2011 in an attempt to determine how they can best cooperate by pooling resources and combining research expertise.
This year’s symposium focused on fuel cell and neutron science convergence. Fuel cells chiefly use hydrogen for their energy source and are best known as the core technology in hydrogen-powered vehicles. But to improve fuel cell performance, the movement and behavior of the hydrogen atoms inside the fuel cell material must be more carefully studied. And since neutron-based technology enables scientists to observe these atoms in real time, such technology is crucial for fuel cell R&D. KAERI houses Korea’s only neutron science research facility, where neutrons are used in research ranging from basic science to industrial technological innovation.
At the symposium, KAERI researchers discussed the facility’s operations and research methodology for proton conductors, while KIST researchers gave presentations on various fuel cell technologies. Dr. Son Ji-Won, head of KIST’s High Temperature Energy Materials Research Center, gave a presentation on solid oxide fuel cells; Dr. Hong Jihyun proposed an energy storage mechanism for ion battery electrodes; and Dr. Yoon Sung Pil examined the R&D taking place at KIST’s Fuel Cell Research Center. Lastly, Dr. Hong Kyung Tae, president of the Korean Institute of Metals and Materials, revealed the latest Chinese and Japanese trends in materials research, followed by a discussion on the need for cooperation among researchers working in neutron science and energy/materials.
By using the event to explore ways of applying neutron science to current fuel cell issues, KIST and KAERI demonstrated a willingness to cooperate in promoting new and renewable energy.
In 2007, KIST and KAERI began work on an ultra-small-angle neutron scattering (USANS) instrument that was finally completed at KAERI’s neutron science facility in 2012. KAERI has since invited researchers from around the world to use it for furthering their studies in micro-nano structures and the mechanisms of catalysts, biomaterials, polymers, carbons, metals, and energy.