Report from the Tokyo University of Science
Outstanding young researchers and students from the Savitribai Phule Pune University (India) were invited to the Photocatalyst International Research Center at the Tokyo Univ. of Science for about three weeks, from November 14 to December 4, 2017. This program was held as part of the Joint Research Activity Course of the SAKURA Exchange Program in Science. Through joint Japan-India research, the main purpose of the exchange program is to grow into international joint research on the theme of photocatalyst coatings.
With about 500,000 students, Savitribai Phule Pune Univ. is India’s third-largest university. Seven people from Savitribai Phule Pune Univ. participated in the program this time: two faculty members, three post-doctorate students, and two graduate students, all of whom are experts in materials science and coating technology. Prof. Suresh Gosavi, the leader of the group from India, specializes in physics and is an outstanding researcher in the field of materials science.
One major objective for the Indian group coming to Japan was to participate in two joint symposiums: Photocatalysis 2 and SIEMME’ 23.
Participants from India gave poster presentations at the symposium. Their presentations were visited by many research regardless of nationality, and the Indian participants also viewed the presentations of other researchers. In addition to sharing information, participants were able to engage in vibrant exchange. The participants who came to Japan were researchers on photocatalysts. For the group from India, these photocatalyst seminars with more than 300 participants were extremely meaningful as an opportunity for exchanging opinions.
Many researchers asked questions about the poster presentation
At the laboratory at the Tokyo Univ. of Science, Indian participants conducted research together with Japan students. For example, they used water-splitting machines to evaluate photocatalytic activation. Furthermore, together with a group of Chinese researchers who also came to Japan as part of SAKURA Science, they dined together with Prof. Akira Fujishima, a pioneer in photocatalytic research who is a Dean at the Tokyo Univ. of Science. Both groups of young researchers were impressed by their interaction with the world-famous Prof. Fujishima.
When not conducting research, participants visited the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan), where they experienced advanced Japanese technology. Miraikan also had many hands-on exhibits that cannot be found in India, and participants enjoyed themselves very much.
Tour of Miraikan
On their days off, we took participants to Mount Fuji and Hakone so that they could see famous sights of Japan. We also visited Asakusa so that they could experience Japanese culture. We are confident that they felt the appeal of Japan.
Furthermore, as an original initiative of the Tokyo Univ. of Science, we are conducting a two-way exchange program as part of SAKURA Science. In this program, in order to express our gratitude, our university visits countries which were invited to participate in SAKURA Science. Through this program, eight students from the Tokyo Univ. of Science will visit the Savitribai Phule Pune Univ. in India this December. All students going to India are scheduled to give oral presentations at an academic conference. We hope that this interaction will deepen human exchange and research activities for growth into international joint research.
Finally, this opportunity to interact with outstanding Indian researchers and students was extremely stimulating and very meaningful for Japanese students. We are grateful to SAKURA Science for providing this opportunity.