Student Voices

Why I chose the Energy Master Course

M2 Fuyumi IzumiTransdisciplinary Science and Engineering

F. Izumi

I am Fuyumi Izumi in Transdisciplinary Science and Engineering department. In Akita Lab, I am developing a super-pressure balloon that can fly for a few months. Most of the research is carried out individually rather than cooperatively, but we are always giving advice to each other and improving ourselves as we make progress in our research. The reason I chose the energy course was to develop an ability to come up with multi-disciplinary solution for various energy problems in Japan. I learned the importance and enjoyment to think through the various energy problems and look at them from various prospective. I think this ability would be useful not only in the field of energy but for any field of research.

M1 Egyna DwinanriElectrical and Electronic Engineering

E. Dwinanri

I have always been interested in energy issues ever since the 2000s energy crisis. I did my bachelor in electrical engineering and found another interest in electronics material and manufacturing. Energy course gave me the opportunity to combine all my interest into my current research in thin film solar cell compound material. I also learnt a lot about other fields such as about sustainable project design and policies. My supervisor is very supportive and I think the team-based research system in the laboratory is very helpful for new students to assimilate and can increase overall research output with more hands on deck.

M1 Josiah WongMechanical Engineering

J. Wong

I enrolled as a Master Student in Energy Course in April 2019. I chose Energy Course as my major to increase my knowledge in order to become a future energy engineer, especially with my background in Petroleum Engineering. In my research on Foam Enhanced Oil Recovery, I feel very supported and comfortable with our culturally diverse laboratory. In the future, I aspire to be involved in multinational energy scene and even goes as far as to be a C-class leader.

M1 Yasuki KadohiroTransdisciplinary Science and Engineering

Y. Kadohiro

I decided to major in energy course because I'm interested in renewable energy and wanted to work on a project related it in the future. I am currently working on a cost-effective system that combines solar water heaters with thermoelectric elements and phase change materials to generate hot water and generate electricity all day long. After graduation, I would like to work for a company or research institute related to renewable energy. My dream is to participate in projects related to solar heat or ocean energy and contribute to increasing the share of renewable energy in the world. If you are interested in energy, why not join the energy course!

M1 Ayu NumataTransdisciplinary Science and Engineering

A. Numata

I am Ayu Numata, and I am a member of Akita laboratory in the Transdisciplinary Science and Engineering Department. I am conducting research on future transportation networks in space. This field of research involves various fields of technology. I chose the Energy Course because it offers engineering classes which covers various field of technology, and I am hoping to apply the knowledge on my research in the future. Since energy courses offer courses in many fields, it is important to clarify what you want to do in graduate school, and make a plan to achieve your goal. For the new Energy Course students, I would hope the two years you would spend in the school would very delightful and meaningful/

Hiroto Takaki (graduated in 2018)Transdisciplinary Science and Engineering

H. Takaki

Could you tell me your name, affiliation and laboratory?

I’m Hiroto Takaki, a student of master curriculum in Energy course, Department of Transdisciplinary Science and Engineering, and my supervisor is Prof. Tokimatsu.

Why are you going to belong to Energy course?

When I was a student of bachelor course, already I had interest in energy but studied only scientific principle or technological side. However, I turned to study comprehensive energy system not only technological side, but also social side because I realized that most of energy technologies are large scale and require financial supports to insert society. Also, I thought that innovative technology does not become worth until it is made use by society. Considered that I would like to become a “ambassador” to diffuse such technologies, I needed social studies such as economy and policy. Thus, I chose to enroll Energy course.

What’s good points for you to enroll Energy course?

It was easy to study because compulsory subjects were lectured well, even though the whole university system has been changed. Elective subjects are offered by Departments of mechanical, chemistry, chemical engineering, material science, and electrical engineering, so that it’s easy to make lecture schedule based on your major in bachelor course. As I explain later, my research doesn’t mention about technical side deeply, the lectures about energy and resources from economic or political aspects seemed to be very attractive for me. In Winter of first year of master course, the subject titled “Energy innovation co-creative project” is held as a poster session, students can see and understand the research topics each other without classification of Departments. This session might give the useful inspiration for each of us, though we usually focusing on only own research.

Could you explain your research topic?

My research topic is about the method to diffuse biomass power production. A policy called Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) has been developed since 2012 to spread renewable energy technologies. To solve three problems of technological, systematic, and economical for FIT, my research aims to clarify the process to determine the cost of electricity (COE) and to evaluate a profitable tariff for small and medium capacity plants. Originally developed COE model by conventional studies apply to the various capacities of biomass plants. According to the benefit analysis between the COE and FIT price, my research tried to determine the original tariff price form mathematical aspects.

Could you tell me your experiences in overseas?

I visited a city Kassel in Germany for three months since September in 2016, and worked as an internship sponsored by “Tobitate Ryugaku Japan”. I was assigned to a project called “Regio Twin” that organize the interactive meeting for municipalities to spread the renewable energies from technological or political aspects. I learned different working style from Japan. Moreover, I could experience how fast the project was going and how to cooperate with governmental institute. The All was occurred by my own action, and that was a precious moment.
On October and November of master second year, I went to Sweden and studied at Chalmers University of Technology. It was short term, but I got the knowledge of foreign policies to diffuse biomass energy. Also, the supervisor there gave some advices for discussion section of thesis, and I understand importance to make conclusion based on my argument.
On the way back to Japan, I attended an international conference in Taiwan. From the meaning of the conference and international trend, I realized how much my research is meaningful and got confidence of my achievement.

What’s your next step and what type of researcher or engineer do you want to become?

I’m going to work domestically as a technological consultant form April. I’ll investigate, analyze, and evaluate the requested matter by clients. For me, the task can be understood as the extended and sophisticated research, because my research topic target is policy matter. I would like to be “a bridge” to connect the technology and policy by job accomplishment step by step, and help that the ministry or municipalities install the innovative energy system to the society. I also have got motivation to work around the world not only in Japan, because I could stay overseas totally for five months within two years of master course life. I would like to pay attention for world’s trend always and keep me growing up to lead the technology diffusion to the correct way.

Please give message to new comers.

One of the impressive characteristics is wide range of study fields. Please make best use of the environment that offers you to expand and deepen the knowledge and skills. Moreover, I recommend you to go out of Japan and see what you never seen. I hope all of you will work internationally, so that please make the period of master course be preparing time to do so. Hope your life in the course well.

Atsushi Suzuki (graduated in 2018)Electrical Engineering

A. Suzuki

I'm A. Suzuki a M2 student in the Energy Course. I joined energy course in April 2016 and will graduate in March 2018. I joined energy course in order to learn more about energy as well as to conduct research on a energy-related materials topic. By attending energy course lectures, I acquired knowledge about energy from a wide perspective different from my own research specialty. When I graduate, I want to become an engineer and make use of the knowledge acquired in the energy course to help society.

D1 Kazuki Ueno (graduated in 2018)

K. Ueno

I’m Kazuki Ueno. I enter to Energy Course in 2016. I’m going to complete master program in March 2018 and go on a doctoral course. I research to control and observe violently molecular motion at ultra high speed. Since Energy Course is consisted by various laboratories, I can foster a broad perspective different in addition to my own specialty in this course. Now I aim to be a researcher with knowledge of a wide range of fields.

M2 Toshiki Okazaki (graduated in 2019)Chemistry

T. Okazaki

I'm Toshiki Okazaki a M1 student in the Energy Course. I had a strong interest in energy issues since we had scheduled blackouts in the area I lived in after the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. In the energy course, you can study across multiple fields related to energy, so you can earn a wide range of perspectives. With energy demand rising rapidly, especially in emerging countries, we aim to become a engineer who can tackle issues beyond the boundaries of fields.

M2 Keisuke Kameda (graduated in 2019)

K. Kameda

I'm Keisuke Kameda, belonged to the energy course in April 2017. I came to be interested in environmental and energy issues with the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant accident caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake. For example, renewable energy is very important in terms of the global environment and energy security. However, in order to make renewable energy the main power source, there are major technological and social issues. It is difficult to solve environmental and energy fields from one specialized point of view because of their complexity. Therefore, I will cultivate broad background and deep expertise in the energy course that can acquire cross-cutting knowledge of energy fields different from my own specialty, and I would like to contribute to the efforts of Japan's environmental and energy problems in the future.

Photo by Si-take