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Activity Report of Open Application Course vol.25

Seeing the invisible air: science and technology exchange between Japan and Korea through environment measurement

Report from Tokai University

For 6 days from January 15 to January 20, 2018, students from Seoul National University Normal College's attached high school (Republic of Korea) were invited to the Shonan Campus of Tokai Univ. for a science and technology exchange program using environment measurement. There were a total of 18 participants: 10 were invited through the SAKURA Exchange Program in Science and 8 participated with their own funds.

There are currently environmental problems such as air pollution shared throughout East Asia. The program was created to enable students made their own measuring devices for nitrogen oxide (NOx) and volcanic gases, with the goal of increasing interest in the science and technology of actual environment measurement. A summary of the activities follows.

Measurement of NOx in air samples collected from home

Passive samplers which can easily collect samples for the NOx concentration in the air were distributed to the students prior to their arrival in Japan, and they used them to collect samples from inside and outside at their respective homes. The samplers brought by the students were dismantled at the university laboratory, a chemical analysis of the NOx content was performed, and each student observed the air pollution conditions of their homes. Air pollution is not normally visible to the naked eye, but it can be quantified through scientific analysis and understood objectively. Students were also able to consider possible causes for the air pollution.

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Measurement of NOx concentrations
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Commemorative photo on the day after the practical session

Monitoring volcanic gas in Hakone

Students visited GASTEC CORPORATION and made detector tubes for measuring volcanic gas levels. They then brought the detector tubes they made to Owakudani in Hakonemachi, Kanagawa Prefecture, and took actual measurements of volcanic gas concentrations. They not only observed the conditions of the volcanic activity in the area but also understood the quantifiable values of the gases that cause the distinctive smells, experiencing the effectiveness of visualization technology for air.

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Creating detection tubes for volcanic gas measurement
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Monitoring volcanic gas concentrations in Owakudani

Summary

On the final day, Professor Sekine handed out certifications of completion to the students. The students also gave letters of gratitude to the staff and cooperators on the Japanese side of the program.

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Commemorative photo with students holding their Sakura Science Program certificates of completion

Activity Report