On our sixth day of the study tour we once again spent our entire day at NTU (Nanyang Technological University) as we did yesterday. This time however we visited two different places at NTU.
Our first stop for the day was the beautiful new CleanTech One building which is home to the Energy Research Institute @ NTU, or ERI@N for short. ERI@N is a research centre which main focuses are on energy storage, fuel cells, sustainable building technologies, maritime energy, solar energy and solar fuels, wind and marine renewables, and electric cars. They strive to make a cleaner and greener future for the world. The CleanTech One building that they are located in even hosts some of the technology that they have created. Some of the products they have created include dehumidification cooling, wireless temperature gauges for around your house or building to monitor trends, and even electric cars. Their own building uses evaporative cooling that is in the tiles of the ceiling, rather than have air blown into only certain areas, therefore the room is cooled more evenly. The roof of the CleanTech One building is covered in solar powers, however they do not generate enough solar power to power the whole building, so on a lower level they have fuel cells which generate much of the other power needed. It was great to see the company not only work towards a more efficient and environmentally friendly future, but to actually use their own technology to show that it works effectively.
After visiting some of ERI@N’s labs around CleanTech One, we had six PhD students present their research to us to show what you can achieve whilst working at ERI@N. Similarly, after lunch we went to the school of physical and mathematical science where six of their PhD students presented their research. After hearing all about their research, we got to see where some of their research takes place. My favourite thing that we saw was a machine that uses quantum technology and lasers to cool down atoms and be able to catch them within a magnetic field. It was amazing to actually be able to see the cloud of atoms caught within the field. The machine itself was also visually stunning, as you would hope so for something that costs three to four million dollars.
After this all of the nanotechnology students from La Trobe were signed off and we were able to explore singapore for the weekend.