What a fantastic trip! Definitely would do it again if I had the chance. Over the past 10 days, I was able to explore many temples, shopping strips, observatory points, and many other exciting things. For the study tour, it has been amazing and phenomenal to see some of the laboratories, technology and research that Tokyo has. The 1st day of the study tour being a small cultural activity to visiting a booming shopping strip. Day 2 to Day 6 involved so much content, it was hard to keep up, since we visited two campuses of Tokyo University, AIST in Tsukuba, Australian Embassy, Imperial Palace, Tokyo Station and the nanotech 2014 exhibition at Tokyo Big Sight. The tour gave me so much insight into research done in Japan and the expo showed me many potential career avenues in the nanotechnology department.
It was definitely sad to leave Tokyo behind, as it is such a spectacular city, with so much to offer everyone, that it is a city that I will visit again. To any other nanotech students reading this, I recommend this study tour because it is a once in a lifetime trip and show the vast world of nanotechnology out in the world, still yet to be explored. The last blog post of the trip, I’m glad to return to Melbourne but I’ll miss Tokyo.
Till next time Tokyo, Catch Ya!!
Wow, the study tour has gone so quick and I cannot believe how much stuff I have seen and done over the past 6 days, it is scary to think I will be back in Melbourne in roughly 3 days as I don’t want to leave Tokyo. Tokyo is a fantastic place to be in, offering everything for a tourist/student would want. Especially today, where we spent the whole day at the nano tech 2014 expo, exploring the other side of the expo, that had booths involved in energy and household technology. Some of the booths were interesting, especially Mitsubishi, which had some live demonstrations of their products,
Talking to some of the exhibitors of nano tech 2014, I gained knowledge dealing atomic force microscopy, graphene and carbon nanotubes, ultra sonicators and many other potential products that will be seen in the future. One of my favourite booths involved 3D printing, which was able to create nano-scale structures using a focussed ion beam, though the technique is still in the research and development stage, it showed a lot of potential in the future.
This study tour has been fantastic, as I have observed several different research projects and instrumentation from Tokyo University, AIST and nanotech 2014, that this experience has been unique and a once in a lifetime opportunity to undertake a study tour that looks at various nano technological aspects of a specific country. It was phenomenal to get a gllimpse of how nanotechnology is approached in another, heavily supported by a nanotechnology expo that boasts over 1000 exhibitors. It has been a marvelous trip and I recommend this trip to any purpose studying Science and nanotechnology.
Been a blast, nano tech 2014 is over and now time to explore Tokyo, catchya!
Day started a lot later than yesterday, so our first visit was to the Australia. The feeling of stepping on Australian soil was fantastic, as it felt like home, as the people at the Australian Embassy sounded like true Aussies, so it felt like home. The embassy boasted tight security, as we had to present our passports and walk through a security gate to ensure we were just here to visit. The Australian Embassy was large, having many residential apartments for Australian citizens and an office to suit Australians trying to make an impact on Australia. We were given a brief presentation on Japan and Australia-Japan relationships by George Manetakis, who is the education manager that represent Austrade. It was great to learn that Australia is trying to expand its relationship with Japan and striving to drive more Japanese students into Australia, to allow the Japanese students the opportunity to study abroad and vice versa for Australian students
Travelling back towards Tokyo Big Site for the nano tech 2014 expo, Ben and I searched amongst some of the countries that had booths in the expo so that we could conduct an interview with representatives of the country as our requirement for 1 of the assessments in NAN3NST. We chose Switzerland as it has some companies that were part of a networking cluster, pointing businesses to potential collaborators known as MicroNARC, an institute interested in research for the Industry sector which was government funded known as EMPA and a manufacturing company interested in potential companies at the exhibition called TISCAL. After these 3 interviews, we listened to some of the seminars given by Saxony, Germany, about their research and potential applications for future needs. At the end of the exhibition, we attended a networking event, that reaches out to the exhibitors of nano tech 2014 so that many different organisations have the chance to communicate with others and possibly establish useful relationships for the future.
Nano tech 2014 for the win!!
Beginning at the break of dawn (Insert opening scene of lion king, “nants ingonyawa…”), we travelled to AIST’s central institute in Tsukuba, Tokyo. Upon arrival, we began with a presentation, overviewing AIST and its facilities and a short introduction into the nano processing facility, present at AIST. Dr. Oshima gave a brief overview of the positron facility present at AIST. We were also toured through one of AIST’s clean room, housing many instruments from sputtering devices to SEM’s. We were unable to go inside the clean room but were still able to view the clean lab. Afterwards, the lab housing the instrumentation required for the positron beamline and micro analyser were viewed, with an explanation into the generation of positrons to how positrons were used to measure defects in a material.
In the afternoon, we headed towards Tokyo Big Site for the nano tech 2014 expo, with over 500 booths and many exhibitors striving to show their research to the nanotechnology community. The expo was massive, taking up 3 halls present at Tokyo Big Site and there was so much research on show, though a lot was in Japanese, so some explanations were only viewable through diagrams present on the posters. We had the chance to roam around the expo, looking at all the technology on show and finding companies that have interesting research for further interviews for our assessment tasks.
The expo was amazing and the experience of being in this nanotechnology community is brilliant. Nanotech 2014 is a wealth of information that will be further explored in the next 2 days.
WOW! Already day 3 of the study tour and the information keeps rolling in. After yesterday’s visit to Tokyo University’s Hongo Campus, which blow our minds with the instrumentation they use, the size of their laboratories and the sheer amount of research groups, the Kachiwa Campus went one better and showed more than I ever expected. They live up to being one of the top universities in the world
The first group visited was the Ono Lab and Mr. Kotaro Yamazaki gave a brief overview of plasma physics and the plasma generator that was set up in the lab. The main idea behind the research was to create plasma that required much less energy than traditional methods used to plasma generation. The results have showed good success but the lifetime is limited to 1 millisecond. 2nd area visited was the Itatani Lab and Mr. Florian Geier gave explanations of the lasers that his group constructs and the potential applications of the lasers to reproduce synchrotron light by using much higher harmonics.
The Institute of Cosmic Ray research was the 3rd area visited, with Dr. Misato Hayashida showing off some of the work down on dark matter, neutrinos and gamma array systems. Last visit was to the Kavli Institute for Physics and Mathematiccs of the Universe, guided by Ms. Midori Ozawa, which gave us an overview of the philosophy that they follow when trying to unravel the mysteries of the universe, where the areas of mathematics and physics are used to explain things seen in the real life.
Lastly, Tokyo University is marvelous and definitely deserve its title as one of the best universities, as only seeing a minor part of the university’s research has left a lasting impact on me.
Day 2 of the nanotech tour began at 9am in the morning. Donning our business attire in order to visit the Tokyo University’s main campus, we did more activities that were associated to the tourism side of the nanotech study tour. Using the train system, travelled towards central Tokyo, the Imperial Palace was a spectacle to see. The whole site is huge and the area it covers is similar to an area covered by a district in Tokyo. It is hard to believe that only the royal family gets to live in such a prestigious area that feels isolated from the modern city. We didn’t get to explore the main gardens but were able to glimpse at the marvel that the Imperial Palace was. It was more astounding that across the road from the imperial palace, people just went about with their daily lives.
Following from the Imperial Palace, a glimpse of Tokyo station was captured in its entirety, as the station is one of the biggest in the world and the site seen was spectacular. Following towards the Bic Camera shop, we discovered that it was a multi-story department store that sold anything from toilet seats to pillows and the variety of products on offer in one store blow the group away. After this little tour into the shopping offered by Tokyo, a visit to Tokyo University had commenced. This university was one of the top universities in the world wasn’t just for show. Meeting with some of the students and staff undertaking research projects similar to the course we are studying was both informative and insightful into the work done by other research groups.
Specifically to the Fugimori and Hasegawaya groups, the research they are undertaking is solid state physics using scanning tunneling microscopy and x-ray photoemission spectroscopy to discover things such as new superconductors that have a higher critical temperature closer to standard ambient temperature. Very insightful and informative to potential future research projects that I may want to undertake. The research undertaken by Tokyo university correlates strongly to nanotechnology, as they try to understand phenomenon that has yet to be fully understood
Today began nice and early with a walk to Starbucks for breakfast. Wandered around Shiba, visiting the Zojoji temple again, this time during the day. Though, there wasn’t anyone around as it may have been too early in the morning. Having some time to kill before meeting with the others from NAN3NST, we decided to walk down some streets and explore Shimbashi. This area is very close to Shiba, but offers more shops to explore and a variety in products.
Arriving back at the hotel, had an informal meeting with the others and Paul explained the week outline for the study tour. Proceeded towards the Harajuku area in Tokyo, for shopping and cultural experiences. The Meiji Jingu shrine was a spectacle, as it is one of the major shrines around Tokyo and the atmosphere at the shrine was full of devotion, appreciation and honor for the culture of Japan. The feeling was fantastic and I am one step closer to understanding Japanese culture.
Travelling down Takeshita street in Harajuku was difficult, as the street was lined with people from one side to the other getting to different destinations. As travelling in a group, we almost lost each other in the sea of people. The amount of shops that offer different products was astounding, as there definitely was something for everyone in that street. The group signed off at this point and Harajuku was further explored. Tokyu Plaza and Omotesando street in Harajuku were places of interest and were fantastic sights, showing the shopping strip that Tokyo has on offer.
After arriving in Japan at night time of the 24th January, I was extremely tired as I had no sleep on the plane and had an overnight flight to Singapore from Melbourne. Struggling after a very turbulent flight, I got lost in Tokyo, not even 1 hour in the country. As expected, Tokyo is a massive city with such rich cultural attributes, diverse business aspects and great sights to be explored throughout the city. Travelling alone was a little daunting, as this would be the 2nd time overseas but the Japanese are very respectful, friendly and know how to help a foreigner in need.
My experience has been great, after arriving at Shiba Park hotel, I decided to explore the local district of Shiba. The Shiba district contains a massive temple, Shiba park, Tokyo tower and various shops present across the streets. The 2nd day in Tokyo consisted of visiting the Pokemon Centre Tokyo, World Trade Centre Building (observatory floor) and visiting the local temple for some quick photos. In the afternoon,I met up with Ben Roda, and we decided to visit the Tokyo Skytree. Unfortunately going on the weekend and without planning, there would have been a 1 hour wait to get to the observation deck.
Deciding that we could go another day, we walked to the Asukasa district, to visit some of the famous shopping streets, which contained many shops with a vast variety of products on sale. We also visited the local shrine, which was colourful, rich in culture and very busy. This temple displayed aspects of Japan’s rich culture and heritage. It was fantastic to observe how Japanese culture differs from Australia culture. Overall, this was an eye-openin experience to what has to come on this tour.
It has been a hectic 2 weeks coming up to the Japan Nanotechnology Study Tour and preparations have been finalized. All that’s left to do is board the plane and let the study tour begin.
This will be my second time overseas, as I went to Phuket, Thailand about 1 month ago and can’t believe I’m going overseas again within such a short amount of time. Though both countries are in Asia, comparing the two countries shows that they are vastly different. Japan will be a fantastic journey and I cannot wait to get there!
This trip will provide me with insight into the nanotechnology world that exists all around the world and show me the required skills to succeed. Overall, this experience is one in a lifetime, showcasing the business etiquette, cultural standards and vast sights of Japan.
Will be arriving in 2 days. Japan, here i come!