2018 Activity Report vol.10:Saga University

Activity Report of Open Application Course vol.10

Collaborative research on bio-electrochemical measurements using nanocarbon electrodes by graduate students of India and university students of Indonesia.

Report from Tominaga laboratory, Graduate School of Engineering, Saga University

A total of 3 persons, including Mr. Ponnusamy Arul, a graduate student at Gandhi Gram Rural University in India, and Mr. Riki Hermawan and Mr. Fariz Hidayat, 4th year undergraduates at Surabaya Institute of Technology in Indonesian, were invited for a period of 15 days from July 24th to August 7th, 2018.


The fabrication of single-wall carbon nanotube composite electrode, and the application of bio-electrochemical measurement was done, as a collaborative research program. In particular, this collaborative research program was done on the development of an interface design aimed at functionalization of an interface of single-wall carbon nanotube composite electrode, application of these designed electrodes to the anode of a microbial fuel cell, and development of highly sensitive detection and highly sensitive sensors for important biological molecules.

On the weekend, they went to Kumamoto and visited the Kumamoto Castle, Suizenji gardens, and the city area that was damaged by the Kumamoto earthquake and which is now under restoration. In addition to learning Japanese culture, they realized that the earthquake countermeasures of Japanese houses were advanced. They visited Saga City Eco Plaza and Saga Castle Historical Museum, and learned about the efforts towards development of biomass industrial cities in Saga prefecture and the history of Saga City, to deepen their understanding of Saga prefecture. They participated in the Summer Seminar for Young Analytical Chemist in Kyushu, and made the poster presentation of research results done at the laboratory of their home country.

Introduction of the state of activities at Saga University Graduate School of Science and Engineering (Department of Chemistry and Applied Chemistry).

Collaborative research

The original carbon nanotube composite electrode was made in the accepting laboratory. Using this electrode, a highly sensitive sensor for glucose detection using an electrode with the interface functionalized with MOF (Metal Organic Framework) was developed. Mr. Riki Hermawan and Mr. Fariz Hidayat of Surabaya Institute of Technology, who were already conducting collaborative research, fabricated the anode of a microbial fuel cell using a nano carbon modified electrode and conducted a performance evaluation. It seems that this was a good opportunity for explaining the experimental operations in English for the Japanese students who helped in the training.

Fabrication of carbon nanotube composite electrode

The three invited students gave presentations in English for about 20 minutes each about the research results obtained in the program and introduced the research of their home university. The Japanese undergraduate students and graduate students also introduced their own research in English for about 10 minutes each.

Research achievement presentation

Inspection and academic conference

On July 28th (Saturday), they participated in the 36th Summer Seminar for Young Analytical Chemist in Kyushu and also made a poster presentation. Then they traveled to Kumamoto City, and visited the Kumamoto castle, in the urban area that was damaged by the Kumamoto earthquake, and which is now under restoration. It seems that they realized the magnitude of the earthquake by seeing the large stone that had fallen down. It seems that they were very interested in the Japanese-style garden at the Suizenji gardens. It was a pretty hot day, but they appeared to be reasonably unhampered by the heat.

On July 31st (Tuesday), they visited Saga City Eco Plaza, Okuma Shigenobu Memorial Hall and birthplace, Saga Prefectural Honmaru History Museum, and learned about the relationship between Saga City and Japanese history, and the efforts towards development of biomass industrial cities of Saga prefecture.

At Saga Prefectural Honmaru History Museum

Impressions of Japanese graduate students

Impressions from the graduate students who lead the program.

Mr. T: I was in-charge of the Indian student. I was able to learn the differences in culture and economy between India and Japan, while having the lunch together and talking. I was also able to learn new methods of thinking by discussing the experimental results. This program was also a good experience for me.

Mr. S: I was in-charge of the two Indonesian students with the same research theme as myself, and each of them shared their skills and know-how. As we discussed the experimental results, the understanding became deeper, and we were able to find a new approach for the issue. Through this program, I was able to cultivate the ability to discuss equally with overseas people, in addition to deepening my understanding of cross culture.


The award ceremony for the course completion certificate was held on the day before they were leaving for their home country. A “Takoyaki” party was held as a farewell party. The cooperation in cooking between the invited students and the Japanese students, made for a happy, harmonious and wonderful moment.

Finally, they would like to express their sincere gratitude to all the administrative staff of the university for their cooperation in conducting this program, and to all the students of the university who made a great contribution. They deeply appreciate the “SAKURA exchange program in Science” for its support.

After completion certificate award ceremony