On December 16, Kwansei Gakuin University hosted the 1st STACY Young Generation Symposium (YGS) as a follow-up to the 1st STACY International Symposium, which was held the previous day in Kobe. The YGS, which was held at the Kobe Sanda Campus and attended by roughly 30 people, featured presentations by graduate students from KGU and Osaka University, as well as guest speakers from Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH (FZJ) in Germany, the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) in France, and the Nagaoka University of Technology (NUT). Amidst global efforts to make a carbon-neutral society a reality by 2050, hydrogen energy is attracting attention for being clean, renewable and economically efficient, and demand for it is expected to grow in the future; however, it has not yet achieved public acceptance as an alternative energy source.
STACY (Towards Safe Storage and Transportation of Cryogenic Hydrogen), a joint project between Japanese, German and French researchers, aims to contribute to the development of safety technology for storing and transporting cryogenic hydrogen in the hopes of making hydrogen energy into a viable mainstream energy source in the future. Professor Hirohisa Tanaka of the School of Engineering, one of the lead researchers on the STACY project, worked with his students and his French and German counterparts in an effort to bring young researchers and young engineers together at the YGS to share information about energy-related topics.
After the STACY YGS began with a keynote speech by Prof. Tanaka, Mr. Sogo Iwata, a second-year graduate student at the Graduate School of Science and Technology, gave the opening presentation, entitled “Research on Hydrogen Safety Catalysts for the Decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.” This was followed by presentations on hydrogen and fuel cells, as well as a lecture on best practices with regard to programming software for scientists, which led to a lively discussion about effective communication in the context of international research teams. The second half of the symposium featured several presentations on hydrogen combustion and energy harvesting, which was followed by a poster session where 16 KGU students gave presentations in English and answered questions about their ongoing research projects in various fields.
The STACY YGS itself was organized by the members of the Tanaka Laboratory, who sent out invitations to the speakers, prepared the program and flyers, secured and set up the venue, planned tours for participants, and devised bus routes. Going forward, the hope is that future events at KGU, such as this symposium, will continue to serve as footholds for members of the next generation in their efforts to gain more knowledge and make further progress in their respective areas of research.