Intensive International Graduate Program Seeks Solutions for Sustainable Energy

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Students from Waseda University present their recommendations for a sustainable energy program for Japan.

The University of Maryland, Center for Environmental Energy Engineering hosted the International Joint Graduate Course in Sustainable Energy Conversion and the Environment from July 10-21, 2017.  This collaborative program is offered in partnership between the University of Maryland the Technical University of Hamburg (Germany), Korea University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University (China), and Waseda University (Japan).  In total, 29 students and four faculty member took part in the intensive program.

The objectives of the course are to understand technologies for sustainable energy production, conversion and utilization, and to gain experience in designing sustainable energy systems.  The student teams worked to develop their own vision for a future sustainable energy scenario for each country participating.

“We learned a great deal by working with the other students”, said Finn Richter, a Ph.D. student from the Technical University of Hamburg.  Many of the students cited the chance to work with students from other countries on sustainable energy projects as a draw to the class.  “Energy sustainability is a global concern,” explained University of Maryland Ph.D. student Zhenning Li, “having this course offered as an international program is very beneficial.”

Each team presented research that explained a country's current energy use, their energy challenges, and how they recommend that country converting to sustainable, clean energy.  For instance, island countries with limited space for solar collection, might instead consider an Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion senario, the Japanese team recommended.

The course schedule also included a visit to Washington, DC the middle weekend, and an outing to Kent Island after the conclusion of the course.  Next year’s course will be hosted by the Technical University of Hamburg from July 2-13, 2018.  For more information visit the course webpage.

Published August 18, 2017