Energy technology research collaborations between Oxford and Korea – a vision for the future

The Department of Engineering Science hosted two special visits recently by the Republic of Korea’s three largest energy technology institutes and by Mr Suk-Hwan Park, Korea’s Ambassador to the UK.

Green energy technology collaboration formalised

The vision for the future is to strengthen cooperation in green technology with a view of advancing the sustainable use and supply of the energy sectors of both the UK and Korea.

This special visit enabled Mr Nam Sung Ahn, President of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP), Mr Joo Ho Hwang, President of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology (KIER) and Mr Ho Yong Kim, President of the Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute (KERI), to attend the first round of talks and workshops with a number of University academics. Discussions centred on turning this vision into reality.

Korean collaboration
Pictured on the left with the Memorandum of Understanding are Professor Alex Halliday, Head of the University’s Mathematical, Physical & Life Sciences Division and Mr Nam Sung Ahn, President of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning. On the right are Korean delegates attending a meeting with academics from the Department of Engineering Science.

During the visit Professor Alex Halliday, Head of the University’s Mathematical, Physical & Life Sciences Division, and Mr Nam Sung Ahn signed a Memorandum of Understanding between KETEP and Oxford University. The main areas of collaboration will include:

  • Energy Efficiency
  • Renewable Energy
  • Smart Grid
  • Green Transportation
  • Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)
  • Energy Storage System
  • New Materials for the Energy Industry

Professor Jong Min Kim, Professor of Electrical Engineering at the Department of Engineering Science, who was one of the leading figures behind Samsung’s nanotechnology research and is the first Korean professor to be appointed by Oxford University, played an instrumental part in bringing this collaboration together. Professor Kim said: “The Memorandum of Understanding means that we now have a long term goal, which is to have a first-class and world-renowned green technology research centre here in Oxford that will one day benefit not only industry in the UK and Korea but also the people of both countries. In the short term we will start a partnership with KETEP”.

The partnership with KETEP will include:

  • Identifying technology areas and specific activities of mutual interest
  • Identifying academic and industrial partners
  • Promoting technical cooperation, including training, the exchange of technical expertise and joint research, workshops, seminars and symposiums.

Vice-Chancellor meets Korean Ambassador

Ambassador Suk-Hwan Park & the Vice-Chancellor
Mr Suk-Hwan Park, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea with the Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University
Professor Jong Min Kim also initiated the visit to Oxford University by Mr Suk-Hwan Park, the Korean Ambassador to the UK. Mr Park, met with the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Hamilton, with two colleagues from the Embassy of Korea: Dr Byoungjun Bae, Head of Economic Section, Counsellor and Mr Jaeshik Shin, Attaché for Education, Science and Technology.

This visit provided the platform to build relationships between Korea and the UK. Mr Park was particularly interested to find out about the welfare of Koreans studying at Oxford.

The itinerary included tours of the Department of Engineering Science Institute of Biomedical Engineering, the Bodleian Library, the Ashmolean Museum and Oxford colleges.

The visit also gave the Vice-Chancellor and the Ambassador the opportunity to discuss plans for the Vice-Chancellor’s visit to Korea, which is scheduled for Spring 2013.