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International Workshop on EEWS 2010 was held.
On October 7 and 8th at Fusion Hall of KI Building, KAIST, the 2010 International Workshop on EEWS (Energy, Environment, Water, and Sustainability) was held. The third to be held, forty national and international academic professionals including Mark Shannon, professor at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Domen Kazunari, Tokyo University professor, Dong Sub Kim, CTO of SK Energy and Doyoung Seung, Senior Vice President of GS Caltex, participated at this year’s workshop. In twelve sessions, themes including Artificial Photosynthesis, Wireless Power Transfer, Green Aviation, Safe Nuclear Fuel Reuse, Fuel Cells in Action, LED 2.0, Foundation of Energy-Water Nexus, and Flexible Battery & Solar Cell were presented and discussed. “Through this workshop, current EEWS policy and research progress from different countries and the future of related technologies will be foreseen,” said Jae Kyu Lee, Dean of KAIST EEWS Initiative. “I hope it became an opportunity to create cooperative relationships with leading researchers.” EEWS is a research project conducted by KAIST to solve global issues that mankind faces today such as depletion of energy, environmental pollution, water shortage, and sustainability.
Native-like Spider Silk Produced in Metabolically Engineered Bacterium
Microscopic picture of 285 kilodalton recombinant spider silk fiber Researchers have long envied spiders’ ability to manufacture silk that is light-weighted while as strong and tough as steel or Kevlar. Indeed, finer than human hair, five times stronger by weight than steel, and three times tougher than the top quality man-made fiber Kevlar, spider dragline silk is an ideal material for numerous applications. Suggested industrial applications have ranged from parachute cords and protective clothing to composite materials in aircrafts. Also, many biomedical applications are envisioned due to its biocompatibility and biodegradability. Unfortunately, natural dragline silk cannot be conveniently obtained by farming spiders because they are highly territorial and aggressive. To develop a more sustainable process, can scientists mass-produce artificial silk while maintaining the amazing properties of native silk? That is something Sang Yup Lee at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) in Daejeon, the Republic of Korea, and his collaborators, Professor Young Hwan Park at Seoul National University and Professor David Kaplan at Tufts University, wanted to figure out. Their method is very similar to what spiders essentially do: first, expression of recombinant silk proteins; second, making the soluble silk proteins into water-insoluble fibers through spinning. For the successful expression of high molecular weight spider silk protein, Professor Lee and his colleagues pieced together the silk gene from chemically synthesized oligonucleotides, and then inserted it into the expression host (in this case, an industrially safe bacterium Escherichia coli which is normally found in our gut). Initially, the bacterium refused to the challenging task of producing high molecular weight spider silk protein due to the unique characteristics of the protein, such as extremely large size, repetitive nature of the protein structure, and biased abundance of a particular amino acid glycine. “To make E. coli synthesize this ultra high molecular weight (as big as 285 kilodalton) spider silk protein having highly repetitive amino acid sequence, we helped E. coli overcome the difficulties by systems metabolic engineering,” says Sang Yup Lee, Distinguished Professor of KAIST, who led this project. His team boosted the pool of glycyl-tRNA, the major building block of spider silk protein synthesis. “We could obtain appreciable expression of the 285 kilodalton spider silk protein, which is the largest recombinant silk protein ever produced in E. coli. That was really incredible.” says Dr. Xia. But this was only step one. The KAIST team performed high-cell-density cultures for mass production of the recombinant spider silk protein. Then, the team developed a simple, easy to scale-up purification process for the recombinant spider silk protein. The purified spider silk protein could be spun into beautiful silk fiber. To study the mechanical properties of the artificial spider silk, the researchers determined tenacity, elongation, and Young’s modulus, the three critical mechanical parameters that represent a fiber’s strength, extensibility, and stiffness. Importantly, the artificial fiber displayed the tenacity, elongation, and Young’s modulus of 508 MPa, 15%, and 21 GPa, respectively, which are comparable to those of the native spider silk. “We have offered an overall platform for mass production of native-like spider dragline silk. This platform would enable us to have broader industrial and biomedical applications for spider silk. Moreover, many other silk-like biomaterials such as elastin, collagen, byssus, resilin, and other repetitive proteins have similar features to spider silk protein. Thus, our platform should also be useful for their efficient bio-based production and applications,” concludes Professor Lee. This work is published on July 26 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) online.
KAIST to hold 2008 Int
KAIST, Korea"s premier science and technology research university, will hold the 1st International Presidential Forum on Global Research Universities at the Westin Chosun Hotel in Seoul on Sept. 8, 2008. Presidents of research universities in all regions of the world have been invited to the conference aimed primarily at identifying common issues and opportunities in strengthening globalization of higher education and research. Participants in the forum will exchange views and ideas on how to build and utilize global research network to promote the sharing of expertise and facilities, conduct joint researches and effectively implement dual degree and roaming professorship programs. KAIST President Dr. Nam P. Suh said of the purpose of the conference: "Research universities have become global enterprises. Collaborations that were once primarily between individual researchers are now increasingly occurring at institutional and international levels. Similarly, educating students which used to be the responsibility of a single university has now become a multi-institutional undertaking, involving many universities in different countries. "Now leading research universities in many countries depend on the continuous supply of outstanding graduate students form the "feeder" schools of developing nations. There are concerns that the current system may not be serving the interest and need of some institutions, especially those in developing nations. This should be examined and understood to devise international mechanisms that can accentuate the positive aspects of globalization. "Through this forum, we hope to forge an international network of universities that will strengthen the effort of individual universities and create alliances for research and education that can become a new paradigm for global collaboration." Keynote presentations will be made on the following five major subjects: -- Roaming Professorship-- Dual Degree Program-- Sharing Facilities and Expertise-- Joint Research, and-- Globalization through Interfacing with Existing Networking Leaders of the world"s major education and research institutions have been asked to lead panel discussions with their rich experiences in globalization programs. Following the conference in Seoul, participants are invited to come to the KAIST campus in Daejeon, about 150 kilometers from Seoul, where a symposium on EEWS (environment, energy, water and sustainability) will be held to examine the progress in interdisciplinary research activities in these vital problems facing the mankind and look for a new direction in international collaboration. Co-sponsors of the International Presidential Forum include the Dong-A Ilbo, a major national daily, and the Dong-A Science Magazine. Message from KAIST President Suh: Research universities have become global enterprises. Collaborations that were once primarily between individual researchers are now increasingly occurring at institutional and international levels. Similarly, educating students used to be the responsibility of a single university but has now become a multiinstitutional undertaking, involving many universities in different countries. These changes are a consequence of globalization and integration of the world’s economy. Temporal andgeographical separations are no longer barriers to the collective generation and transfer of knowledge andenlightened education. It is also a natural response to the demand for educated workforce who can functionin any country. Current globalization was preceded by the migration of graduate students who were seeking to fulfill theiraspirations for better education at the world’s leading universities. This international movement of studentshas benefited not only students but research universities as well. Now leading research universities in manycountries depend on the continuous supply of outstanding graduate students from the “feeder” schools ofdeveloping nations. There are some concerns that the current system may not be serving the interest and need of some institutions,especially those in developing nations. This should be examined and understood to devise institutionalmechanisms that can accentuate the positive aspects of globalization. The purpose of the International Forum of Research University Presidents, which will be held on Sept. 8 inSeoul, Korea, is to identify common issues and opportunities for research universities that further strengthenglobalization of higher education and research. Participants will hear diverse views and ideas and will learnfrom those who have been active in global education and research. Participants also will examine dualdegree programs that are already in place among many universities and the effective implementation of aglobal research network. Through this process, we hope to forge an international network of universities that will strengthen the effortof individual universities and create alliances for research and education that can become a new paradigm forglobal collaboration. Looking forward to meeting you in Seoul, Prof. Nam P. SuhPresidentKAIST Tentative Program(Theme: Global Science and Technology Networking) Sept. 7, 2008, Sunday 17:00 - 18:30 RegistrationSept. 8, 2008, Monday09:00 - 09:10 Opening Ceremony09:10 - 09:40 I. Keynote Presentation: Roaming Professorship09:40 - 10:20 Panel Presentations:- Improving the competitiveness of global university education- Sharing differences in culture and environment for sustainable education for the future generation- Promoting science and engineering education among secondary students- Preserving and utilizing expert knowledge for better education10:20 - 10:40 Open Discussion10:40 - 11:00 Coffee Break11:00 - 11:30 II. Keynote Presentation: Dual Degree Program11:30 - 12:10 Panel Presentations:- Benefits of dual degree program- The role of dual degree program easing brain drain- Global branch campus or dual degree program?- Raising international IQs of scientists and engineers for global enterprises12:10 - 12:30 Open Discussion12:30 - 14:00 Luncheon14:00 - 14:30 III. Keynote Presentation: Sharing Facilities and Expertise14:30 - 15:10 Panel presentations:- How to spin off international joint ventures from the sharing of research facilities and expertise- Economic benefits of sharing research facilities and expertise- How to communicate science and technology agenda to political leaders- Easing the gap between the developed and less developed regions through science and technology cooperation15:10 - 15:30 Open Discussion15:30 - 16:00 IV. Keynote Presentation: Joint Research16:00 - 16:40 Panel Presentations:- Benefits of international joint project- Ways to formulate the international joint projects- Sharing intellectual property rights- Global economic and social contributions of international joint project cooperation16:40 - 17:00 Open Discussion17:00 - 17:30 Coffee Break17:30 - 18:00 V. Keynote Presentation: Globalization through Interfacing with Existing Networking18:00 - 18:40 Panel Presentations:- Establishing global science and technology networking- The role of global science and technology networking for the higher education of the next century- Regionalized or globalized science and technology networking- Connecting regional science and technology networks for the global networking18:40 - 19:00 Open Discussion19:00 - 19:15 Closing Remarks by President Suh19:15 - 21:30 Banquet Venue: Westin Chosun Hotel, Seoul
KAIST Inks Agreement with KERI for EEWS Technological Cooperation
KAIST concluded an agreement with the Korea Institute of Energy Research for technological cooperation in the research on the four global issues of energy, environment, water and sustainability (EEWS) on Tuesday (April 15). The agreement was signed by KAIST President Nam-Pyo Suh and Moon-Hee Han, director of the Korea Institute of Energy Research at the KAIST. The agreement calls for building a cooperative network for exchanges of personnel and information, and joint use of research facilities and equipment between the two institutions. Under the agreement, KAIST and KIER will also jointly conduct scientific researches. When it comes to personnel exchange, KAIST will appoint researchers of KIER as adjunct professors of KAIST, while KIER will appoint KAIST professors as its adjunct researchers. Undergraduate students of KAIST will be given an opportunity to join government-commissioned projects and participate in an internship program of the institute.
KAIST, K-Water Sign MOU for Cooperation in EEWS
KAIST has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Korea Water Resources Corporation (K-Water), a state-invested organization responsible for the development and management of inland water resources, for cooperation in the research on the four global issues of energy, environment, water and sustainability (EEWS). The MOU was signed by KAIST President Suh Nam-Pyo and K-Water President Kwak Kyul-ho on Feb. 22 at the KAIST. KAIST and K-Water agreed to establish a cooperative network for exchanges of personnel and research resources for advanced R&D on EEWS. The agreement has been reached on the common belief that EEWS is the most imminent problem facing the humanity in the 21st century. Under the MOU, KAIST and K-Water will work together to build a EEWS global network; to develop policies and conduct researches to strengthen the competitiveness of Korea"s water industry; and to train and exchange research manpower of the two institutions. The agreement also calls for sharing technological information, exchanging research results and publications; and jointly hosting symposiums and workshops.
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