Lecture 1: Nano technology and its application

Professor Zhang Weixian
Prepared by Binyam GebreMariam, Tongji University

This lecture was the first of the series of lectures during this year’s ProSPER.Net Young Researchers’ School. The lecture was given by Professor Zhang Weixian from UNEP-Tongji Institute for Environment and Sustainable Development. He divided the lectur  in two parts; Nanotechnology and research methods. During his first lecture on nanotechnology and its application for environmental remediation and treatment of water, Professor Zhang provided a brief introduction about the characteristics of nanomaterials and their current development. He showed some projects being currently undertaken at Tongji University, including the state key laboratory.

The second part of the lecture was on methods of research and life during his PhD. He shared his scholar experience and the challenges while doing his PhD research.  Among the issues he raised, Professor Zhang suggested that instead of producing a lot of papers for publication, it is better to have very few with high quality. He also mentioned the problems related to the current peer review journals. However, as there is no better way to publish an outstanding paper than the current system, he suggested students should come up with better quality and new findings to publish in these highly cited and prestigious journals. The issue of publishing papers and its process raised a lot of questions and was discussed among the participants and the professor.