On October 20 until October 26, 2019, Four ASEAN universities including Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), University Tun Hussein Onn (UTHM), Vietnam National University (VNU) and National University of Laos participated in the Nagoya Institute of Technology (NITech) Sakura’s Program. UTM was represented by 3 undergraduate students; Muhammad Syahmi Bin Azhari, Muhammad Zahin Bin Abd Muttalib and Muhamad Lokman Bin Sakip, and two accompanying lecturers Dr. Nor Eliza Alias and Prof. Ir. Dr. Mohd. Fadhil Bin Md. Din from School of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Engineering. The Sakura Science Exchange program was hosted by Assistant Professor Dr. Mitsuhiro Honda from Nagoya Institute of Technology (NITech), Department of Physical Science and Engineering and led by Dr Nickolas Anting Guntor from Universiti Tun Hussein Onn (UTHM). The students representing other ASEAN countries were undergraduate and post-graduate students from UTHM, undergraduate students from Vietnam National University (VNU), and from National University of Laos. The ‘Sakura Science Exchange’ program invites Asian countries and other countries to Japan in collaboration with industry-academic-government through ‘Sakura Science Plan’ to introduce and to offer experience in the field of research and technology in Japan. The specific objectives of the program are to learn the culture of Japan and understand the education system in Japan.
In line with Sakura Science spirit and the program objectives, several activities were conducted. Knowledge sharing sessions by the professors and accompanying lecturers were done to introduce each professor’s research area and to teach and expose the students on knowledge related to advance material, sustainability and disaster reduction applications. The program began with an ice-breaking session where the host professor Ass. Prof. Dr. Mitsuhiro Honda and Prof. Kenzo Iwao shared their experience and current research and product on nanotechnology in advance environmental materials, followed by research experience sharing on the topic on cool island technology by Dr. Nickholas Ganting. Dr. Nor Eliza Alias from UTM shared her experiences on research related to integrated flood risk management and possible application of nanotechnology in disaster risk reduction.
As for the students, they were exposed to nanotechnology laboratories and experiencing experimental activities in the Nano Advance Material Research Centre at Ichikawa and Soga laboratories. Three experiments were conducted. First experiment was on the preparation of TiO2 which is ‘Liquid phase deposited experiment’, second is ‘Absorption by using Spectrometer machine and Particle Size by Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)’ in order to identify the size of nanoparticle and third experiment was on ‘Photocatalyst by using Spectrometer machine with UV light sources’. The last experiment taught the students on photocatalytic degradation of methylene blue over TiO2.
Besides science and technology, participants of the SAKURA program experienced cultural exchange as well. The students were amazed by the positive attitudes of the Japanese as well as other participating countries. They were able to work as a team, share creativities and opinions in various knowledge of life. A link of the video made by the students and participating lecturers and professor is available at https://youtu.be/HpjJT6QLtNk
Students’ activities in NITech Laboratory