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KAIST Holds the 2014 System on Chip (SoC) Robot War in August and October
Domestic and international competitions for robots with artificial intelligence are organized by Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo of Electrical Engineering. KAIST will host two robot competitions this year: The Robot Integration Festival will be held in August at the Convention Center in Daejeon and the International Robot Contest in October at the Kintex in Ilsan. Participating robots are developed based on the System on Chip (SoC). SoC robots refer to an autonomous robot that has a processor, a memory, peripheral devices, logic, and other system components combined on a single chip, which enables the robots to handle tasks and make decisions without human intervention. The competitions include three entries: Taekwon Robot, HURO-competition, and SoC Drone which was added for the first time this year. The Taekwon Robot involves a one-on-one sparring match, using a Korean traditional martial art, between two robots. Competitors score points based on front and side kicks, as well as punching. The HURO-competition pits robots in a competition to perform assignments such as hurdling, barricade clearing, crossing bridges, and overcoming other obstacles. The SoC Drone evaluates robots' capability to track miniature cars and navigate between buildings while in flight. The drone should have two cameras and a SoC brainboard equipped to offer autonomous, remote-controlled flight. The director of the competitions, Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo of Electrical Engineering at KAIST, commented that with the integration of Korea’s world-class semiconductor technology, the competitions would lead to improvements in robotics engineering and unmanned aerial vehicle technology. The competitions are open to anyone interested in SoC robots and unmanned aerial vehicles. For more information about the competitions, please visit http://www.socrobotwar.org . The application deadline is April 15, 2014.
KAIST to Hold "Data Science Workshop"
Discussion regarding the scientific utilization of data and its future possibilityThe upcoming 2nd Data Science Workshop is to be held at COEX, Seoul, on 27th February‘Big Data’ has attracted the explosion of interest in recent years. KAIST has arranged a platform of discussion for the utilization of data science and its possible usage in the future.The Department of Knowledge Services Engineering at KAIST is to hold the 2nd Knowledge Services Workshop under the topic of "Data Science for Industry" at COEX, Seoul, on 27th February.Data Science refers to using scientific approach to extract generalized knowledge from the data in order to find meaningful information.With the era of Big Data ahead, the amounts of data produced by the industry are rapidly increasing. The companies have recognized the significance of the data, however, the understanding of its systematic utilization is yet to be realized."Data Science Workshop" has been organized to discuss on how to create a new value using the data compiled by the industry. Lectures are to be given by four leading professionals in the field of data science, who are the professors from Department of Knowledge Services Engineering at KAIST. The head of the department, Mun-Yong Lee, said, “This workshop will be an opportunity for the companies that are considering introducing data science, as well as the students who are interested in the related field, to think about the possibility and future of data science.”Pre-registration for the workshop is currently open until 23rd February on the official website (http://kseworkshop.kaist.ac.kr).
KAIST developed an extremely low-powered, high-performance head-mounted display embedding an augmented reality chip
Walking around the streets searching for a place to eat will be no hassle when a head-mounted display (HMD) becomes affordable and ubiquitous. Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) developed K-Glass, a wearable, hands-free HMD that enables users to find restaurants while checking out their menus. If the user of K-Glass walks up to a restaurant and looks at the name of the restaurant, today’s menu and a 3D image of food pop up. The Glass can even show the number of tables available inside the restaurant. K-Glass makes this possible because of its built-in augmented reality (AR) processor. Unlike virtual reality which replaces the real world with a computer-simulated environment, AR incorporates digital data generated by the computer into the reality of a user. With the computer-made sensory inputs such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data, the user’s real and physical world becomes live and interactive. Augmentation takes place in real-time and in semantic context with surrounding environments, such as a menu list overlain on the signboard of a restaurant when the user passes by it, not an airplane flight schedule, which is irrelevant information, displayed. Most commonly, location-based or computer-vision services are used in order to generate AR effects. Location-based services activate motion sensors to identify the user’s surroundings, whereas computer-vision uses algorithms such as facial, pattern, and optical character recognition, or object and motion tracking to distinguish images and objects. Many of the current HMDs deliver augmented reality experiences employing location-based services by scanning the markers or barcodes printed on the back of objects. The AR system tracks the codes or markers to identify objects and then align them with virtual reality. However, this AR algorithm is difficult to use for the objects or spaces which do not have barcodes, QR codes, or markers, particularly those in outdoor environments and thus cannot be recognized. To solve this problem, Hoi-Jun Yoo, Professor of Electrical Engineering at KAIST and his team developed, for the first time in the world, an AR chip that works just like human vision. This processor is based on the Visual Attention Model (VAM) that duplicates the ability of human brain to process visual data. VAM, almost unconsciously or automatically, disentangles the most salient and relevant information about the environment in which human vision operates, thereby eliminating unnecessary data unless they must be processed. In return, the processor can dramatically speed up the computation of complex AR algorithms. The AR processor has a data processing network similar to that of a human brain’s central nervous system. When the human brain perceives visual data, different sets of neurons, all connected, work concurrently on each fragment of a decision-making process; one group’s work is relayed to other group of neurons for the next round of the process, which continues until a set of decider neurons determines the character of the data. Likewise, the artificial neural network allows parallel data processing, alleviating data congestion and reducing power consumption significantly. KAIST’s AR processor, which is produced using the 65 nm (nanometers) manufacturing process with the area of 32 mm2, delivers 1.22 TOPS (tera-operations per second) peak performance when running at 250 MHz and consumes 778 miliWatts on a 1.2V power supply. The ultra-low power processor shows 1.57 TOPS/W high efficiency rate of energy consumption under the real-time operation of 30fps/720p video camera, a 76% improvement in power conservation over other devices. The HMDs, available on the market including the Project Glass whose battery lasts only for two hours, have revealed so far poor performance. Professor Yoo said, “Our processor can work for long hours without sacrificing K-Glass’s high performance, an ideal mobile gadget or wearable computer, which users can wear for almost the whole day.” He further commented:“HMDs will become the next mobile device, eventually taking over smartphones. Their markets have been growing fast, and it’s really a matter of time before mobile users will eventually embrace an optical see-through HMD as part of their daily use. Through augmented reality, we will have richer, deeper, and more powerful reality in all aspects of our life from education, business, and entertainment to art and culture.” The KAIST team presented a research paper at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) held on February 9-13, 2014 in San Francisco, CA, which is entitled “1.22TOPS and 1.52mW/MHz Augmented Reality Multi-Core Processor with Neural Network NoC for HMD Applications.”Youtube Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSqY30FOu2s&feature=c4-overview&list=UUirZA3OFhxP4YFreIJkTtXw
Wearable computer follows suit of smart phones
KAIST hosts “Wearable Computer Competition” in KI Building, Daejeon Campus, on the 7th-8th of November “Computer that controls smart phones with the movement of facial muscles” and 12 other wearable computers to be presented As technology transitions to “Wearable Computers,” KAIST is hosting its 9th “Wearable Computer Competition.” The competition will take place over two days, 7th-8th of November, in KI building, on the main Daejeon Campus. The “wearable computer” is designed to enable users to use the computer whilst moving by limiting its weight and size so that it can be worn as a part of the body and clothing. Wearable computers have been considered the future of information technology (IT) ever since smart phones and other miniaturized IT devices made an appearance. The “Wearable Computer Competition” has been held since 2005 under the leadership of Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo from the KAIST Department of Electrical Engineering. It is the only competition in the nation where undergraduate students use their unique ideas and newest technology to produce computers that seem to be existed only in sci-fi movies and comic books. A total of 15 teams out of 70 made the competition and went through a rigorous selection process based on written applications and interviews to enter the final. The teams at the final received USD 1,400 and IT devices including smart phones to produce a wearable computer. KAIST increased the number of finalists from the last year"s 10 to 15 this year as the wearable computer industry is extending, and there is growing interest in the computer around the world after the launch of Google Glass and Samsung Galaxy Gear. This year’s entries included a product for quadriplegic patients to control smart phones with the movement of facial muscles, which attracted public interest. The product in the form of a headband can be worn by quadriplegic patients or someone with limited hand movement. The user can activate the product by clenching their molars and move the mouse on the smart phones with the movement of muscles in their face. Furthermore, a wearable band shaped device that can control smart phones with simple hand movements is also attracting interest. Broad hand movements of the user allows him/her to receive calls and take photos, and handshakes between users control sharing of files. Body communication can be used to protect private information without a password or locking the device. In addition, gloves and shoes that can sense the user’s movement to play an instrument without the instrument being present; a cane for the blind that converts visual information to tactile; a belt that protects children from sexual crimes; and a game where the user can be Super Mario to play and other practical products are presented. The chairman of the competition, Professor Yoo said, “As you can see from the launch of Samsung Galaxy Gear, wearable computers will follow smart phones as the leader of IT devices in the next generation.” He continued, “This competition and workshop is an opportunity to increase public interest in wearable computers and serves as a communication platform for experts to view the present and the future of wearable computers.” The “Wearable Computer Workshop” will be held this year as well. The workshop under the theme of “the present and the future of wearable computers” invited Professor Kyu-Ho Park, Vice President of KAIST, as a keynote speaker to talk on “ubiquitous, fashionable computers.” Moreover, Samsung’s Dong-Jun Geum and the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute’s Hyeon-Tae Jeong will lecture on the “trend and direction of progress of wearable devices” and the “technological trend and prospect of industry of wearable computers,” respectively. To participate in the competition or the workshop, please visit the website (http://www.ufcom.org) for further information.
Green Technology for Data Centers: Ultra-low Power 100 Gbps Ethernet Integrated Circuit Developed
A new integrated circuit (IC), consuming only 0.75W of electricity, will reduce the power usage of data chips installed at data centers by one-third. Each day, billions of people surf the Internet for information, entertainment, and educational content. The Internet contains an immeasurable amount of information and knowledge generated every minute all around the world that is readily available to everyone with a click of a computer mouse. The real magic of the Internet, however, lies in data centers, where hundreds of billions of data are stored and distributed to designated users around the clock. Today, almost every business or organization either has its own data centers or outsources data center services to a third party. These centers house highly specialized equipment responsible for the support of computers, networks, data storage, and business security. Accordingly, the operational cost of data centers is tremendous because they consume a large amount of electricity. Data centers can consume up to 100 times more energy than a standard office building. Data center energy consumption doubled from 2000 to 2006, reaching more than 60 billion kilowatt hours per year. If the current usage and technology trends continue, the energy consumption of data centers in the US will reach 8% of the country’s total electric power consumption by 2020. A research team at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and Terasquare, Inc. ( http://www.terasquare.co.kr ), a spin-off company of the university, developed an extremely low-powered integrated circuit for Ethernet that consumes less than 0.75W of electricity but is able to send and receive data at the high speed of 100 gigabits per second (Gbps). The research team, headed by Hyeon-Min Bae, assistant professor of electrical engineering at KAIST, claims that the new microchip uses only one-third of the electricity consumed by the currently installed chips at data centers, thereby helping the centers to save energy. Integrated circuits are embedded on communication modules that are inserted into a line card. Data centers have numerous line cards to build a network including routers and switches. Currently, 8W ICs are the most common in the market, and they consume a lot of energy and require the largest modules (112 cm 2 of CFP), decreasing the port density of line cards and, thus, limiting the amount of data transmission. The ultra-low-power-circuit, 100-gigabit, full-transceiver CDR, is the world’s first solution that can be loaded to the smallest communication modules (20 cm 2 of CFP4 or 16 cm 2 of QSFP28), the next-generation chips for data centers. Compared with other chip producers, the 100 Gbps CDR is a greener version of the technology that improves the energy efficiency of data centers while maintaining the high speed of data transmission. Professor Hyeon-Min Bae said, “When we demonstrate our chip in September of this year at one of the leading companies that manufacture optical communication components and systems, they said that our product is two years ahead of those of our competitors. We plan to produce the chip from 2014 and expect that it will lead the 100 Gbps Ethernet IC market, which is expected to grow to USD 1 billion by 2017.” The commercial model of the IC was first introduced at the 39 th European Conference and Exhibition on Optical Communication (ECOC), the largest optical communication forum for new results and developments in Europe, held from September 22-26 at ExCeL London, an international exhibition and convention center. Professor Bae added, “We received positive responses to our ultra-low-power 100-Gbps Ethernet IC at the ECOC. The chip will be used not only for a particular industry but also for many of next-generation, super-high-speed information communications technologies, such as high-speed USB, high-definition multimedia interface (HDMI), and TV interface.” Before joining KAIST, Hyeon-Min Bae worked for many years at Finisar as a researcher who designed and developed the world’s first super-high-speed circuit, the 100 Gbps Ethernet IC.
Final Results of the 2013 Intelligent SoC Robot War
KAIST hosted the 2013 Intelligent System on Chip (SoC) Robot War, the largest intelligent robot contest in Korea, from Oct. 24 to 27 at KINTEX in Ilsan, Korea. Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo, from the Department of Electrical Engineering at KAIST, started the contest in 2003 to promote Taekwondo, a Korean martial art, and Korean semiconductor technology to the world. The winning team was awarded an honorary certificate from Kookiwon, the world headquarters of Taekwondo. Competitions were held in two different categories: Taekwon Robot and Huro Competition. In the Taekwon Robot contest, intelligent robots loaded with cameras and semiconductor chips competed in Taekwondo skills. In the Huro Competition, intelligent humanoid robots competed in detecting and passing huddles. Approximately 550 participants from 107 groups applied for the 12th Intelligent SoC Robot War and 22 groups were selected for the final tournament. The best teams in each category received an award from the president and prime minister of the Republic of Korea, respectively. Professor Yoo, the operating chair of the contest, said, “The contest was organized to introduce both technology and tradition by presenting robots with Taekwondo skills. The experiences from this contest could be the foundation for future robot technology and the growth engine for the next generation.” Professor Yoo is a leading researcher in the field of object recognition chip, and his papers were often presented at the International Solid State Circuits Conference.Details of the contest can be found at http://www.socrobotwar.org.
KAIST's wireless Online Electric Vehicle (OLEV) runs inner city roads
For the first time anywhere, electric buses provide public transportation services and are recharged right from the road. The Online Electric Vehicle (OLEV), developed by the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), is an electric vehicle that can be charged while stationary or driving, thus removing the need to stop at a charging station. Likewise, an OLEV tram does not require pantographs to feed power from electric wires strung above the tram route. Following the development and operation of commercialized OLEV trams (at an amusement park in Seoul) and shuttle buses (at KAIST campus), respectively, the City of Gumi in South Korea, beginning on August 6th, is providing its citizens with OLEV public transportation services. Two OLEV buses will run an inner city route between Gumi Train Station and In-dong district, for a total of 24 km roundtrip. The bus will receive 20 kHz and 100 kW (136 horsepower) electricity at an 85% maximum power transmission efficiency rate while maintaining a 17cm air gap between the underbody of the vehicle and the road surface. OLEV is a groundbreaking technology that accelerates the development of purely electric vehicles as a viable option for future transportation systems, be they personal vehicles or public transit. This is accomplished by solving technological issues that limit the commercialization of electric vehicles such as price, weight, volume, driving distance, and lack of charging infrastructure. OLEV receives power wirelessly through the application of the “Shaped Magnetic Field in Resonance (SMFIR)” technology. SMFIR is a new technology introduced by KAIST that enables electric vehicles to transfer electricity wirelessly from the road surface while moving. Power comes from the electrical cables buried under the surface of the road, creating magnetic fields. There is a receiving device installed on the underbody of the OLEV that converts these fields into electricity. The length of power strips installed under the road is generally 5%-15% of the entire road, requiring only a few sections of the road to be rebuilt with the embedded cables. OLEV has a small battery (one-third of the size of the battery equipped with a regular electric car). The vehicle complies with the international electromagnetic fields (EMF) standards of 62.5 mG, within the margin of safety level necessary for human health. The road has a smart function as well, to distinguish OLEV buses from regular cars—the segment technology is employed to control the power supply by switching on the power strip when OLEV buses pass along, but switching it off for other vehicles, thereby preventing EMF exposure and standby power consumption. As of today, the SMFIR technology supplies 60 kHz and 180 kW of power remotely to transport vehicles at a stable, constant rate. Dong-Ho Cho, a professor of the electrical engineering and the director of the Center for Wireless Power Transfer Technology Business Development at KAIST, said: “It’s quite remarkable that we succeeded with the OLEV project so that buses are offering public transportation services to passengers. This is certainly a turning point for OLEV to become more commercialized and widely accepted for mass transportation in our daily living.” After the successful operation of the two OLEV buses by the end of this year, Gumi City plans to provide ten more such buses by 2015.
KAIST Holds Robot Taekwondo Competition Recognized by the World Taekwondo Federation
KAIST will host the 12th Intelligent System-on-Chip (SoC) Robot War in October 2013, a robot competition. The event will have two entries: robot Taekwondo contest and HURO competition. The World Taekwondo Federation has decided to offer an honorary Taekwondo degree to the winner of SoC Taekwondo Robot competition. The Intelligent SoC Robot War was created in 2002 by KAIST’s Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo in the Department of Electrical Engineering. For SoC Taekwondo Robot event, two robots compete in the form of Taekwondo, traditional Korean martial arts. The robots competing in this event have a camera and semiconductor chips on board, and therefore they have the brain-like functions to identify an object and control movements on their own. The robots have 21 joints with humanoid robot technology on their body for the techniques needed to compete in a typical Taekwondo match. They employ moves such as front kicks, side kicks, and upper punches. In particular, KAIST’s System Design Innovation & Application Research Center, the organizer of this competition, has operated a team to demonstrate robot Taekwondo since last year with the purpose of displaying the basic movements of Taekwondo. “Robots received attention as the source of growth in the near future. We have been developing robotics technology, and as part of our endeavor, preparing the Taekwondo demonstration team since 2012 to exhibit Korea’s robot technology and introduce our traditional martial arts,” said Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo. “We will continue to develop various capabilities for Taekwondo robots in cooperation with the World Taekwondo Federation.” In HURO-Competition, robots compete for crossing the finishing line first by completing various missions, such as putting in a golf ball or overcoming obstacles while avoiding unexpected accidents. The winning team is awarded with a Presidential Award of Korea. The 12th Intelligent SoC Robot War Competition is open to all graduate or undergraduate students. For details, visit the homepage at http://www.socrobotwar.org/.
KAIST develops a low-power 60 GHz radio frequency chip for mobile devices
As the capacity of handheld devices increases to accommodate a greater number of functions, these devices have more memory, larger display screens, and the ability to play higher definition video files. If the users of mobile devices, including smartphones, tablet PCs, and notebooks, want to share or transfer data on one device with that of another device, a great deal of time and effort are needed. As a possible method for the speedy transmission of large data, researchers are studying the adoption of gigabits per second (Gbps) wireless communications operating over the 60 gigahertz (GHz) frequency band. Some commercial approaches have been introduced for full-HD video streaming from a fixed source to a display by using the 60 GHz band. But mobile applications have not been developed yet because the 60 GHz radio frequency (RF) circuit consumes hundreds of milliwatts (mW) of DC power. Professor Chul Soon Park from the Department of Electrical Engineering at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and his research team recently developed a low-power version of the 60 GHz radio frequency integrated circuit (RFIC). Inside the circuit are an energy-efficient modulator performing amplification as well as modulation and a sensitivity-improved receiver employing a gain boosting demodulator. The research team said that their RFIC draws as little as 67 mW of power in the 60 GHz frequency band, consuming 31mW to send and 36mW to receive large volumes of data. RFIC is also small enough to be mounted on smartphones or notebooks, requiring only one chip (its width, length, and height are about 1 mm) and one antenna (4x5x1 mm3) for sending and receiving data with an integrated switch. Professor Park, Director of the Intelligent Radio Engineering Center at KAIST, gave an upbeat assessment of the potential of RFIC for future applications. What we have developed is a low-power 60-GHz RF chip with a transmission speed of 10.7 gigabits per second. In tests, we were able to stream uncompressed full-HD videos from a smartphone or notebook to a display without a cable connection (Youtube Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PVSLBhMymc). Our chip can be installed on mobile devices or even on cameras so that the devices are virtually connected to other devices and able to exchange large data with each other."
KAIST Develops Wireless Power Transfer Technology for High Capacity Transit
KAIST and the Korea Railroad Research Institute (KRRI) have developed a wireless power transfer technology that can be applied to high capacity transportation systems such as railways, harbor freight, and airport transportation and logistics. The technology supplies 60 kHz and 180 kW of power remotely to transport vehicles at a stable, constant rate. KAIST and KRRI successfully showcased the wireless power transfer technology to the public on February 13, 2013 by testing it on the railroad tracks at Osong Station in Korea. Originally, this technology was developed as part of an electric vehicle system introduced by KAIST in 2011 known as the On-line Electric Vehicle (OLEV). OLEV does not need to be parked at a charging station to have a fully powered battery. It gets charged while running, idling, and parking, enabling a reduction in size of the reserve battery down to one-fifth of the battery on board a regular electric car. The initial models of OLEV, a bus and a tram, receive 20 kHz and 100 kW power at an 85% transmission efficiency rate while maintaining a 20cm air gap between the underbody of vehicle and the road surface. OLEV complies with the national and international standards of 62.5 mG, a safety net for electromagnetic fields. In July 2013, for the first time since its development, OLEV will run on a regular road, an inner city route in the city of Gumi, requiring 40 minutes of driving each way. Today’s technology demonstration offers further support that OLEV can be utilized for large-scale systems. Professor Dong-Ho Cho, Director of Center for Wireless Power Transfer Technology Business Development at KAIST, explained the recent improvements to OLEV: “We have greatly improved the OLEV technology from the early development stage by increasing its power transmission density by more than three times. The size and weight of the power pickup modules have been reduced as well. We were able to cut down the production costs for major OLEV components, the power supply, and the pickup system, and in turn, OLEV is one step closer to being commercialized.” If trains receive power wirelessly, the costs of railway wear and tear will be dramatically reduced. There will be no power rails, including electrical poles, required for the establishment of a railway system, and accordingly, lesser space will be needed. Tunnels will be built on a smaller scale, lowering construction costs. In addition, it will be helpful to overcome major obstacles that discourage the construction of high speed railway systems such as noise levels and problems in connecting pantograph and power rails. KAIST and KRRI plan to apply the wireless power transfer technology to trams in May and high speed trains in September.
New Technology Will Enable the Commercialization of Plasmon Displays
-- Enhancements in the penetration ratios of color filters are expected by applying nano-surface plasmon effects. -- -- Color filter technology will be applicable to large-area OLED and LCD. -- The fabrication technology to commercialize display color filters using plasmon effects has been discovered. A joint research team headed by Professor Kyung Cheol Choi from the Department of Electrical Engineering of the Korea Advanced Institute for Science and Technology and Prof. Byeong-Kwon Ju from the School of Electrical Engineering of Korea University has developed the technology to design and produce a display color filter by applying nano-surface plasmon effects. Color filters are core components used to express colors in CMOS image sensors found in LCD/OLED displays or digital cameras. The current color filters have penetration ratios of 20~30%, but the objective of the joint research team is to raise this penetration ratio by over 40% to facilitate the mass production of energy-efficient plasmonic displays. Currently available plasmonic color filters are limited to applications on micrometer scales. However, outcomes of the newest research extend the size of the applications up to 2.5 cm by using laser interference lithography. The academic and industrial sectors agree that it is now possible to mass-produce displays using plasmonic color filters. The researchers built a nanohole array to large scale by using laser interference lithography, a technology that forms nanostructures with laser light interferences. They also suggested a new manufacturing process that can optimize the features of color filters while compensating for defects arising from the fabrication stages. The new manufacturing process of applying laser interference lithography is expected to overcome the shortcomings of traditional color filters by simplifying production and, enabling them to be produced at lower costs. “There were limitations to industrial applications of plasmon effect due to production costs, time, and yields,” explained Yun Seon Do, a Ph. D. candidate in the Department of Electrical Engineering of KAIST. “The new technology can reduce fabrication time and cost to the extent that it would be advisable to replace dye-based and pigment-based color filter technology." “This research can be applied to large-scale displays, such as TV screens, by using laser-interference lithography,” said Jung-Ho Park, a Ph. D. candidate in the School of Electrical Engineering of Korea University. “The research outcome is expected to be widely applied in advanced nano-manufacturing processes as it does not restrict the types of circuit boards." The research outcome, led by doctoral candidates Do and Park, appeared on the front cover of the second issue of Advanced Optical Materials, a highly regarded academic journal in the field of nanotechnologies, and the team has applied for six related patents.
Inexpensive Separation Method of Graphene Developed
The problem with commercializing graphene that is synthesized onto metals over a wide area is that it can not be separated from the metal. However, a groundbreaking separation technology which is both cheap and environment friendly has been developed. Prof. Taek soo Kim and Prof. Byung Jin Cho"s research teams have conducted this research under the support of the Global Frontier program and Researcher Support Program initiated by The Ministry of Education and Science and Korea Research Foundation. The research results have been posted on the online news flash of Nano Letters on februrary 29th. (Thesis title: Direct Measurement of Adhesion Energy of Monolayer Graphene As-Grown on Copper and Its Application to Renewable Transfer Process) The research has generated exact results on the interfacial adhesive energy of graphene and its surface material for the first time. Through this, the catalyst metal are no longer to be used just once, but will be used for an infinite number of times, thereby being ecofriendly and efficient. Wide area graphine synthesized onto the catalyst meatal are used in various ways such as for display and for solar cells. There has been much research going on in this field. However, in order to use this wide area graphene, the graphene must be removed from the catalyst metal without damage. Until now, the metal had been melted away through the use of chemical substances in order to separate the graphene. However, this method has been very problematic. The metal can not be reused, the costs are very high, much harmful wastes were created in the process of melting the metals, and the process was very complicated. The research teams of Professors Taek Su Kim and Byung Jin Cho measured the interfacial adhesive energy of the synthesized graphene and learned that it could be easily removed. Also, the mechanically removed graphene was successfully used in creating molecular electronic devices directly. This has thus innovatively shortened the graphene manufacturing process. Also, it has been confirmed that the metalic board can be reused multiple times after the graphene is removed. A new, ecofriendly and cost friendly method of graphene manufacturing has been paved. Through this discovery, it is expected that graphene will become easier to manufacture and that the period til the commercialization date of graphene will therefore be greatly reduced Prof. Cho stated " This reserach has much academical meaning significance in that it has successfully defined the surfacial adhesive energy between the graphene and its catalyst material and it should receive much attention in that it solved the largest technical problem involved in the production of graphene.
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