Total 206Articles
News list
Content Forum List
2019-11 04

[Academics][Researcher of the Month] RNA Discovery Brings Light to Curing Cancer and Brain Disease

Professor Nam Jin-wu (Department of Life Science) may have discovered a key ingredient to diagnosing and curing brain disease and cancer in his research published on September 13th in Nature Communications. Nam’s research has brought light to a phenomenon regarding messenger Ribonucleic acids (RNA), a type of polymeric molecule essential in various biological roles that transfers information from the genome (genetic material of an organism) into proteins by translation (the process in which ribosomes in the cytoplasm synthesize proteins after the process of transcription of DNA to RNA in the cell's nucleus). Professor Nam Jin-wu (Department of Life Science) shared his data-driven journey for a deeper understanding of human bodily functions. Nam was the first to discover that microRNAs (small non-coding RNA molecules) and UPF1s (regulator of nonsense transcripts 1) interact with each other and conduct “post-transcriptional or translational regulation” within cells, which can bring deeper understanding to the fundamentals of gene manifestation within cells. MicroRNAs contain around 22 nucleotides (basic building blocks of DNA) found in plants, animals and some viruses, that function in RNA silencing, which prevents the expression of a certain gene, and post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression. UPF1 is a protein that in humans is encoded by the UPF1 gene and is known to be an important factor needed to selectively recognize incorrectly generated RNAs within cells and degrade them. The conversion process of DNA to protein (Photo courtesy of www.kurzweilai.net) There are many ways to regulate the process of making protein from DNA genes within cells in the human body. Nam compared this process to switching on lights in a classroom, with the switch being a modulator of protein manifestation, and the actual turning on and off, signifying whether proteins were created. However, cells are much smarter than we think, so instead of a binary state of zero and one that signifies whether proteins were created or not, cells can actually regulate protein in a more precise way as they can have a continuous value between the two numbers. “It is like using a sensor that corrects the light’s brightness according to how bright it is outside, instead of simply turning the classroom light on and off or maintaining a degree of brightness,” said Nam. “In order to do this, genes go through the steps of DNA to messenger RNA to protein.” According to internal and external conditions of cells, the degree of protein manifestation is regulated by “transcriptional regulation,” a transferring process that creates RNA from DNA, and “post-transcriptional or translational regulation,” which regulates the process of creating protein from RNA. Nam said his research started during a lunch with Professor Hwang Jung-wook (Department of Genetics), who was at the time conducting a research on RNA quality control. The two talked about gene manifestation regulation research and questioned why UPF1 dependent decay appeared in messenger RNAs. Nam and Hwang soon created a theory and joined hands to test their theory using various data open to the public for around one year. Most of Nam’s research relied on data-driven science, which uses statistical and computational verification using dozens of terabytes of data. Programs, algorithms and pipelines (a set of data processing elements connected in series) were created to analyze and interpret the data. Then, various experiments and samples were used to develop his research. A total of some four years and six months had passed until Nam published his research. Nam (left on front row) poses with students from the Department of Life Science lab. "Data biology’s biggest attraction is its systematic approach to research," said Nam. With the newly discovered gene control regulation principle, Nam believes that it could be used to diagnose and treat various diseases, and can also be used to develop treatment platforms. Jung Myung-suk kenj3636@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Kim Ju-eun

2019-11 04

[Academics][Excellent R&D] Giving Voice to Those With Developmental Disabilities

Many societies seek to create equal standing for all social groups, which also advances human societies toward democratic order. An important factor in societal evolution is hearing what people have to say, but there are those who are shunned to the outskirts of discussion as their voice is ignored or is transferred to their guardians, who are trusted to speak for those who have difficulties speaking or expressing their mind through gestures. Professor Je Cheol-ung (School of Law) has been fighting for people with developmental disabilities, which includes dementia, mental diseases and disorders, to make society listen to their voices instead of suppressing them in the name of protection. Professor Je Cheol-ung (School of Law) seeks to improve the rights of people with developmental disabilities. “There are those who cannot speak well, but one can see dislike in their expression, which is an expression of refusal,” said Je. “In this way, even if one cannot express themselves through words, they show their intentions in different ways like emotion and feelings. We need to consider whether we are offering a correct service.” Korea has around 400,000 patients with developmental disabilities living in nursing facilities and mental hospitals, which isolates them from society. The lack of caregivers in Korea makes conditions in these facilities unfavorable as one caregiver would have to take care of an average of eight patients. They would often be neglected or even be tied up, literally, and laws do not do much to protect their rights. Elderly struggling from dementia are often swindled into handing over their money or investing in bad businesses. Je’s research on “The Integration of Persons with Impairments for Decision Making Ability into the Communities” has been conducted since 2012, which is funded by the Ministry of Health and Welfare. Je said that the problem behind Korea’s policies for people with developmental disabilities is the low budget, and the public benefits offered are typical and not customized towards individual needs. Je’s team seeks to revise laws so that they can function better to protect the rights of the people with developmental disabilities. The first step in Je’s research is creating a theory on possible revisions. Then, Je’s team visits facilities to interview patients and those involved with their wellbeing and finds out if the theory can actually be implemented. One revision that Je said was a significant result of his research is revisions to the Civil Proceedings Act that allows for people with developmental disabilities to participate in lawsuits instead of being pushed to the sidelines. Je said there are many cases where people with developmental disabilities are excluded from lawsuits that they are involved in, instead replacing them with their legal guardians, or included them in the case without any actual participation. Je led a briefing session on supported decision-making for elderly. (Photo courtesy of Je) What keeps people with developmental disabilities from other social groups is the fact that they are not part of the groups that seek to protect their rights, said Je. These groups are instead led by their legal guardians or lawyers. In order to make their voices heard, Je said that people with developmental disabilities whose conditions are less severe need to take a leading position in these groups and speak for those who are more restricted in expressing themselves. Je believes in de-institutionalization, taking people with developmental disabilities out of facilities and restoring them back in society. Je seeks to move this societal paradigm of substituted decision-making to supported decision-making, which will focus on the autonomous decision by patients instead of relying on the supporting roles of legal guardians. Je (fourth from right) and his team attended a debate on implementing a public trust for people with developmental disabilities. (Photo courtesy of Je) “The definition of a good world is a place where the weak can live comfortably,” said Je. “True democracy is practiced only when the weak speak their minds, and society listens in return.” Jung Myung-suk kenj3636@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Kim Ju-eun

2019-10 23

[Academics][Researcher of the Month] Goal to Create a Safe Driving Environment

In an age where humans can rely on machines for assistance in everyday life, an infinite amount of data is interpreted by machines according to our needs. The wonders of technological advancement are developed in light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. In the automobile industry, automation has allowed sensors and algorithms to alert and maneuver vehicles under human supervision. Yet, accidents happen, even with the most cutting-edge technology. Professor Park June-young (Department of Transportation and Logistics Engineering, ERICA Campus) emphasizes the issue of safety in his research on enhancing in-vehicle driving assistance information under a connected vehicle environment. Professor Park June-young (Department of Transportation and Logistics Engineering, ERICA Campus) participated in simulation tests himself. According to Park, there are various factors that can lead to driving assistance malfunctions. Sensors can be blocked by physical objects, such as heavy rain, dust, insects, and glare from sun rays reflecting off white vehicles, which could become anomalies for vehicle cameras. Although automobile manufacturers research thoroughly to create driving assisting technology, it is impossible to factor all scenarios, added Park. A solution to this problem is Cooperative-Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS), which is a system of information sharing between V to I (vehicle to infrastructure) and V to V (vehicle to vehicle). In-vehicle head-up display (HUD) design scenario samples (Photo courtesy of Park) “Vehicles must be informed of adjacent infrastructures and should share information between V to V, vehicle to vehicle,” said Park. “Only by constantly sharing information about the number of nearby vehicles and their movements, thus acquiring their driving patterns as data, can technology assist in driving, even if the driver cannot see in front of them or their sensors are down.” Park’s research did not only focus on the driving technology of the future, but also on the driving environment of today. His objective was to develop the driving technology of vehicles, but in a safe way. He calls his vision of autonomous driving "autonomous safety-driving." Risk scenario-based HUDs that Park and his team have designed in their research are illustrated above. Depending on risk factors, HUDs display different information in various designs and colors, which were selected most optimally by test subjects. (Photo courtesy of Park) Park was part of a four-man team for a period of around three years, most of which was conducted at the University of Central Florida. Park's research focused on creating a stable environment for driving in dangerous situations, especially during fog, which is a big problem in Florida. Heavy rain and fog in the region make it difficult to see even a few meters ahead. In order to create a solution to this problem, Park oversaw the data acquisition of various driver assistance technologies of automobile companies as well as acquiring subjects to participate in test-driving scenarios. With the data acquired, Park and his fellow researchers developed a head-up display (HUD) based on emotional dimensions and design category factors by factoring in safety factors and user preference. HUDs are any transparent display that presents data without requiring users to look away from their usual viewpoints, which in the case of vehicles is usually displayed on the front window. In 2017, the Korean government announced its goal of achieving partial autonomous driving (with manual overdrive during emergency situations) by 2030. Although Park believes this goal is achievable, he thinks it is impossible without an environment that supports autonomous driving. Park has said that not all cars have autonomy. Regular vehicles and vehicles with assistive driving capacities will have to share roads; thus, in order to coexist in such a shared traffic environment, it is necessary to find anomalies within the system “instead of having a false notion that one will control their surroundings by the car sensor’s readings and drive autonomously.” “I wish the idea of traffic safety is widespread among people,” said Park. “The future is important, but since people living in the present are also important, I plan on working hard to make today’s traffic environment safe.” Park (center in the front row) posed with students from the Department of Transportation and Logistics Engineering research lab in Hanyang University’s ERICA Campus. Jung Myung-suk kenj3636@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Lee Hyeon-seon

2019-10 16

[Academics][Notice] Institute for Euro African Studies: Opening an International Academic Event

The Hanyang University Institute for Euro African Studies is planning on holding an international academic event with the theme being, ‘Africa public diplomacy vitalization of Asian countries based on the Africa market environment analysis’ at the Hanyang University Museum, 2nd floor, in the Kang Seong-hee Seminar Room on Friday, October 25th at 10 a.m. This international academic event is a special event commemorating the 80th anniversary. Scholars from African and Asian countries will be invited including Algeria, Tanzania, Ethiopia, China, Japan and Vietnam to discuss local information of Africa, the status quo of African public diplomacy, and the achievements of Korean public diplomacy and expansion strategy. If you wish to participate, please fill out the online submission form located here (https://forms.gle/7z1nDro1UvXty78y9) and submit. For more details on the event, please contact the Hanyang University Museum (02-2220-1394~6) or the Hanyang University Institute for Euro African Studies (02-2220-0805). Hanyang Global News Team Global@hanyang.ac.kr

2019-10 16

[Academics][Notification] College of Humanities Held the Eleventh East Asia Humanities Forum

The Hanyang University College of Humanities held 'The Eleventh East Asia Humanities Forum' from October 18-19th in Room 205 of the International Conference Room in the College of Humanities. Starting with a special lecture from Jung Min, a professor in the Department of Korean Language & Literature, and a celebration speech from president Kim Woo-seung, the forum included professors' presentations and debates from foreign universities and Hanyang University. Under the theme of 'The Transformation and Symbolization of East Asian Culture,' this forum celebrated the 80th anniversary of Hanyang University and the 60th anniversary of the College of Humanities. 26 professors from 5 different countries and 6 universities joined the forum including Tsinghua University (China), Nankai (China), National Taiwan University (Taiwan), Waseda University (Japan), Hong Kong Polytechnic University (Hong Kong), and Hanyang University (Korea). The East Asia Humanities Forum was formed for personal and academic exchange among five colleges in the humanities from four East Asian countries. Each participating university held the forum in turn with Hanyang University hosting the eleventh forum. In this year's forum, Hong Kong Polytechnic University was invited to join for the first time. From this forum, Hanyang University is expected to be a hub for East Asia Humanities exchange and to promote the active exchange of research and students among East Asian universities. Hanyang Global News Team Global@hanyang.ac.kr

2019-10 14

[Academics][Excellent R&D] Technique to Improve Display Technology

In the modern world, people look, read, communicate, and even travel through the few-inch square screen. Thus, developing a better display technique has always been an aspired aim. Professor Kim Jaekyun's (Department of Photonics and Nanoelectronics) recent proposition for a better display technology with a ‘Programmable Non-Contact Assembly-based 5000ppi Micro LED Display’ suggests a new and better technology for the future of displays. Kim Jaekyun (Department of Photonics and Nanoelectronics), in his recent study proposition, suggested a better Micro LED transfer technology for the future of displays. Micro LED is an emerging display technology, consisting of an array of microscopic light-emitting diodes (LEDs) forming the individual color pixels. This particular LED is quickly becoming the “next big thing” for it outperforms, in many ways, the organic light-emitting diode (OLED), which is the current and dominant display technique used in most devices. Most importantly, Micro LED has much better energy efficiency. With the same amount of electricity, Micro LED emits light 1000 times brighter than OLED. This indicates that smaller, lesser, and more distantly arranged Micro LEDs will create the same smooth screen as the previous OLED. However, there is one big problem to solve before commercialization. For Micro LED, the Red-Green-Blue color pixels are manufactured separately, then directly transferred onto the display backplane. However, the current transfer technology, where each pixel is transferred one by one, is highly time-consuming and expensive. The result is an expensive product unfit for commercializing, such as Samsung’s new model of television, the Wall Professional, which costs up to 300 million won. A large Micro LED display in the Garosu-gil Apple store. Although the LEDs are arranged quite distantly in close view, the brighter light of Micro LED creates the illusion of a smooth surface from afar. (Photo courtesy of Kim) Kim proposed a technique that arranges the color pixels without any direct contact. First, the Micro LEDs dispersed in a solution will be spread on the backplane. As a result of the electric field from the sophisticatedly-designed backplane, the micro LEDs will automatically be arranged into correct position. The micro LED display made by this technique will be much cheaper, allowing a wide commercialization of the micro LED. Kim expects the technique to be implemented on all devices, including smartphones and TVs. He primarily expects its positive impact on the performance of AR glasses, which requires a small but bright display light as Micro LED. “The research will be difficult, but I have conviction that it will work,” said Kim. “When researching, one has to think less of ‘will it work?’ and more of ‘I need to make it work’; because in the end, somebody will. For the next three years, I’ll keep these words in mind and work my hardest to succeed in developing the new Micro LED technology.” Lim Ji-woo il04131@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Lee Hyeon-seon

2019-10 08

[Academics][알림] An 'Invitation Lecture on Environmental Protection’ by Hanyang University

Hanyang University will open an ‘Invitation lecture on environmental protection’ in the international conference room (6th floor) of the Paiknam Academic Information Center & Library (Seoul Campus) on Friday, October 25th at 2 p.m. Hosted by the Hanyang University Environmental Foundation and the Office of Student Affairs, this invitational lecture is being held for the purpose of improving awareness of environmental issues for students and members of the school. In this lecture, the board president of the Environmental Foundation, Choi Yeol will be lecturing on the theme, ‘From carbon economy to economic circulation.’ Professor of special affairs, Cho Chun-ho will lecture on the theme, ‘The turning point of change for the climate crisis generation,’ and ‘The new relationship’ by an architect Cho Jin-man. Hanyang Global News Team global@hanyang.ac.kr

2019-10 06

[Academics][Researcher of the Month] A New Association Between Muscle and Metabolic Syndrome

According to the National Institution of Health (NIH), metabolic syndrome is the name for a group of risk factors that raises your risk for heart disease and other health problems, such as diabetes and stroke. As metabolic diseases become more prevalent over the past few decades, researchers have been working to figure out the underlying cause. Professor Jun Dae-won (College of Medicine) has made a breakthrough over this field by discovering its association with muscle health. Professor Jun Dae-won (College of Medicine) discovered the link between muscle and metabolic diseases. “As people get older, they tend to lose muscle mass. This increases the risk of falls, which might cause the death of the elderly,” said Jun. “However, most of the researchers did not acknowledge why muscular issues lead to the aggravation of metabolic diseases.” Jun’s team, in collaboration with Professor Kim Ji-young’s team, made progress on finding the links between muscle and metabolic syndrome. What caught Jun's eyes was psoas muscle, which is an internal muscle of the loin. Jun made use of this muscle, as it is widely known to be proportional to the total muscle mass. Jun collected 1000 PET-CT (Positron emission tomography–computed tomography) images on psoas muscle and kept an eye on glucose inside the muscle. Jun found out that Fluorine‐18‐labelled fluoro‐2‐deoxy‐d‐glucose (18F‐FDG) uptake of psoas muscle is a promising surrogate marker for existing and incipient metabolic derangement. Jun's team identified Fluorine‐18‐labelled fluoro‐2‐deoxy‐d‐glucose (18F‐FDG) uptake through PET-CT as it provides a clear picture of psoas muscle. (Photo courtesy of Jun) Jun admitted that he could not eliminate all confounding variables, despite endless efforts to minimize them. "There are limitations in clinical trials, as it is not easy to find action mechanisms through these tests. That is the reason why we went abreast with animal testing and cell experiment,” explained Jun. “There may be some hindrance in interpretation due to differences between human and laboratory animals. But they still provide clues to action mechanisms.” Thus, he stated his plans to work on the revalidation of the research, digging deeper into the degree of association. Jun underlined the need for continued endeavor, as it eventually pays off, in an unexpected way at times. Jun highlighted the importance of being industrious and strong-minded. “My original research intended to find the relation between liver function and metabolic syndrome,” said Jun. “Unfortunately, I could not draw meaningful results.” Jun was on the verge of giving up the research. It was his continuous subgroup analysis that led to eureka. Just as what people say, sometimes coincidence is a plan in disguise. Oh Kyu-jin alex684@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Kim Ju-eun

2019-09 30

[Academics][Excellent R&D] Stratification and Customization: A New Route Towards Curing Rare Intractable Diseases

A few years ago, the Ice Bucket Challenge went viral on social networking services and became a popular event all around the world. People either dumped ice water on their heads or donated 100 dollars to support funds for a rare disease called amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Also referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, ALS is a disease that causes the death of neurons which control voluntary muscles. There is still no cure on ALS, with only minor treatments being available. Here is Professor Kim Seung Hyun (College of Medicine), an individual who has devoted his medical career to finding clues to this incurable disease. Professor Kim Seung Hyun (College of Medicine) has been on the field of neuro-degenerative disorders for more than 25 years. Kim has been working in the field of ALS and other neuro-degenerative disorders since 1993. Kim focuses on the issue of medication as he proposes a new model on the drug development process. “Most clinical trials are based on a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach as they do not consider individual differences among people,” said Kim. “Even though people suffer from the same disease, they might be showing different symptoms due to genetic differences. That is why some drugs cannot be commercialized regardless of their medicinal effect on selected specimen.” Kim explained that clinical trials in ALS were headed towards 'one-size-fits-all.' (Photo courtesy of Kim) Kim, who has been conducting research on the unique genetic background of Korean and Asian populations, discovered that Koreans tend to have more Histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6) gene mutation than people of other ethnicities. Based on these findings, Kim is now working on applying this result to the development of new pharmaceuticals. “My research aims to establish a treatment strategy with a stratified model of Lou Gehrig's Disease,” Kim said. “The next step will be the customization of treatment by prescribing and providing a remedy in accordance with one’s genetic data.” Kim said his objective is to develop a diagnosis platform by utilizing AI technology. “I am endeavoring to build a nomogram that can tell what the patient requires, and I expect the discriminants to become more precise as time goes on.” By citing a 2016 Go match between AlphaGo and Lee Se-dol, Kim continued on. “AlphaGo’s victory attributes to effective processing of data accumulation. AI will lead to an innovative success on providing cures for rare intractable diseases just as AlphaGo read Lee Se-dol’s move and made an irresistible attack.” Kim advised students to be more versatile and challenging. As a renowned medical researcher and top-tier specialist, Kim highlighted the importance of being versatile. “You only deal with the basics at school,” said Kim. “Things have changed and will change even faster. You need to be prepared for globalization and technological advances.” In addition, Kim encouraged students to challenge more. “When I first started as an ALS specialist at Hanyang, I had only one patient for me to work with. However, 25 years of endless effort is what made Hanyang a world-class institution in the field of neurological disorders.” Oh Kyu-jin alex684@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Kim Ju-eun

2019-09 25

[Academics]Professor Nam Jin-woo and Professor Hwang Jeong-wook Develop Technology that Improves the Predictability of Micro RNA Target Genes

▲Professor Nam Jin-woo(left) and professor Hwang Jeong-wook(right) Professor Nam Jin-woo from the Department of Life Science and professor Hwang Jeong-wook from the Department of Genetics team developed a technology that enhances the predictability accuracy of micro RNA target genes through investigating a gene control mechanism that is due to micro RNA. Micro RNA, messenger RNA, etc. are formed through DNA with genetic information. Micro RNA adjusts the proliferation, differentiation(분화), and extinction of cells by decomposing messenger RNA ,which is the cast for creating protein that drives vital phenomenon. There are around 2,000 varieties of micro RNA, and each one targets hundreds to thousands of messenger RNAs. Therefore, several prediction algorithms are used due to the costs and the time needed to verify target genes respectively through experiments. Previously, microRNAs were paired with each other based on their complementary sequence information to predict the targeted messengerRNA genes, but it is anticipated that it will be able to narrow down the target by adding information on characteristic sequence information (CUG motif) in the future. Through superparallel ranking analysis, the professor team identified the new gene control mechanisms in which the quality control protein (UPF1) of messengerRNA and microRNA work together, and named it UMD. To prevent abnormal proteins from being produced from messengerRNA that did not receive proper information from DNA, it was known that a quality control protein exists to break down the corresponding messenger RNA. However, it was newly discovered that when micro RNA is added, quality control protein is combined into a characteristic part (CUG motif) that is different from the previous one. The professor team noted the correlation between decomposition by microRNA and decomposition by quality control protein based on the better disassembly by quality control protein if messengerRNA has a microRNA binding site. In effect, it has been found that binding sites of quality control proteins (CUG motifs) are better preserved evolutionally in a microRNA combining site. Instead of controlling the proteins that are related to the disease or the genes that are passed on to the next generation, adjusting the messengerRNA, which functions as the intermediate product in the process of producing proteins from genes and disappears, seems to have advantages in drug designs. The achievements of this research, which was carried out with the support of mid-sized research support projects and bio·medical technology development projects by the Ministry of Science and ICT(MSIT)‧ National Research Foundation of Korea were published in the Journal of Nature Communications on September 13th. ▲ UMD decomposition mechanism investigation experiment and a mechanism molecular structure mimetic diagram

2019-09 23

[Academics][Excellent R&D] A Step Toward Coexistence of Cultural Properties

Did you know that there is a national treasure near Hanyang University? Salgoji Bridge, the longest bridge during the Joseon Dynasty period, was excavated by Professor Ahn Shin-won (Department of Cultural Anthropology), the current head of the ERICA Institute of Cultural Properties and the chief of the Hanyang University Museum. He is now leading the Ganghwa-gun designated cultural heritage comprehensive maintenance plan, which aims to recognize and analyze the present conditions of 60 city-designated cultural assets and plans to preserve, restore, and utilize them. Professor Ahn Shin-won (Department of Cultural Anthropology) is leading the Ganghwa-gun designated cultural heritage comprehensive maintenance plan to analyze and restore the heritages. The purpose of this project is to establish a comprehensive maintenance and restoration plan of Ganghwa-gun's city-designated cultural properties, to utilize them as baseline data for preservation management and application. This is a 10 month-long project which began in July of this year and is expected to finish in May of next year. The restoration project covers 60 cultural properties, including 17 tangible cultural assets, 34 monuments, and 9 cultural heritage materials. Although it is important that our cultural heritage is preserved and maintained, making use of them is an even more important project. The comprehensive maintenance plan is a scheme to preserve cultural heritage even more efficiently. In order to carry out such a plan, there must be research done on how the present condition is. The comprehensive maintenance plan is an extended study of archeology, according to Ahn, who majored in the field. It is possible that ordinary citizens do not know the value of the excavations, which is why they must be preserved, utilized, and openly known. The city-designated cultural properties are not managed well, according to Ahn, and there are many cases where the direction boards have been mislabeled, or the roads to cultural assets are rocky and difficult to access. This is why diagnosing the current conditions of the cultural properties is important in order to take the necessary measures to better improve their state of preservation. A picture of Bunori Dondae Fort (left) and Bugilgot Dondae Fort (right) from a field study (Photo courtesy of Ahn) Executing the Ganghwa-gun designated cultural heritage comprehensive maintenance plan to preserve local cultural properties can be an exemplary case in regards to utilizing cultural assets. It can also instill the idea of protecting our cultural properties in people's minds. “We need to make sure that our children grow up in an environment where preserving our cultural heritage is not a campaign, but a basic,” said Ahn. He also emphasized the importance of preserving intangible cultural assets such as folk games, pansori (a genre of Korean musical storytelling), or religions. The ERICA Institute of Cultural Properties has long deliberated on how to improve the cultural assets alongside people in their lives and have successfully taken the lead in this sector. They are now working on how to incorporate cultural properties in stages as early as urban planning at Hanam-si. It is unprecedented in Korea that city planners and experts in cultural assets work together, according to Ahn. Cultural properties is not something grandiose. "We must think of them as our family so that we naturally protect them," said Ahn. Analysis on the present condition of the 60 cultural heritages is finished, and now, Ahn is working on the report that describes how to preserve them and how to utilize the cultural properties. Kim Hyun-soo soosoupkimmy@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Lee Hyeon-seon

2019-09 23

[Academics][Researcher of the Month] Adsorption Desalination, a Road to Innovative Desalination

Desalination is the process of removing salt from seawater, which is refined and utilized for human consumption and irrigation. As many parts of the world suffer from water scarcity, the significance of desalination technology is increasing. There are several ways of performing desalination, but the most widely used ones are Reverse Osmosis (RO) and Forward Osmosis (FO), as they are more economical. However, Professor Kim Young-deuk (Department of Mechanical Engineering, ERICA Campus) is looking beyond those methods as he digs deeper into desalination through evaporation. Professor Kim Young-deuk (Department of Mechanical Engineering, ERICA Campus) is explaining his project on adsorption desalination. Adsorption desalination is a method of desalination which employs low-temperature waste heat as its energy source. It is one of the subfields of desalination, in which evaporation is triggered through the adsorption of heat. According to Kim, this method of desalination has three advantages compared to RO and FO desalination. First, the technology can work not only for desalination, but also for air-conditioning. It can also reduce energy use, consuming less than half of what RO and FO currently require. Finally, it is cost-effective as there is less of a need for big-scale infrastructure. “The source technology of desalination is further developed in other countries,” explained Kim. “And we pay royalty for its use. What I am trying goes along with the government’s policy to localize essential source technology.” Kim is now working on showing more visible performance as his team was nominated as one of the final three for the ‘Alchemist Project,’ a national project launched by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy in order to support the research and development of innovative technology. Kim's project started from a small device but has improved over the years. (Photo courtesy of Kim) Kim started his project on this topic at the time he came to Hanyang as a professor, which he learned from his postdoctoral fellowship. He commented that his research is still in its early stage, but he is hopeful that the technology will bring a paradigm shift in terms of efficiency and utility. Kim stressed the importance of challenge and experience as a researcher. At the end of the interview, Kim advised the students of Hanyang to challenge and experience as much as possible. “Assuming that you are well-founded on your professional knowledge, you should go beyond and overcome your limits,” said Kim. “It will help you apply your knowledge into a new field and find a niche market.” Oh Kyu-jin alex684@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Lee Hyeon-seon