Shovels hit the dirt on Thursday, May 7, marking the first step toward construction of UNIST Future Secondary Batteries Research Center.
The groundbraking ceremony was attended by corporate supporters and city officials, including Chairman YoungCheol Park of Ulsan Metropolitan City Council, President Nam Seong Cho of Samsung SDI, Jong Kook Yoon at Sejin Heavy Industries Co., Ltd., Director Bong-Hyun Joo (Ulsan Industry-Academia Collaboration), and members of the UNIST community.
“This groundbreaking ceremony marks the beginning of a new ear in developing next generation batteries at UNIST,” says President Cho. He continues by saying, “Although our goal to develop technology and undertake advanced research for the presperity of humankind may seem far-fetched for an institution that is only six-years-old, I am confident seeing our world-renowned researchers at UNIST, making great strides in secondary battery technology.”
Special guests, Mayor Gi-hyun Kim of Ulsan and Mr. Chae-ik Lee of the National Assembly, along with Mr. Ghil-boo Kang of National Assembly, also shared remarks about the importance of the building and its role in advancing and accelerating the commercialization process for new energy storage technologies.
This new research center, surrounded by beautiful natural scenery, will serve as the hub for energy research and education at UNIST. The center comprises five floors with a gross floor area of approximately 6,300 square meters. To be completed in 2016, this new facility will include dry rooms, stability rooms, real-time battery analyzers, as well as rechargeable battery assembly equipment.
Dr. Jaephil Cho, a Lithium-Battery Materials Chemist, a battery researcher, Director of Research Center for Innovative Battery Technologies, and a professor of Energy and Chemical Engineering at UNIST will be heading this new facility.
At UNIST, he has been working on developing a breakthrouh technology using both silicon and germanium materials for lithium-ion battery anodes. In recent years, Dr. Cho and his research team has developed new technology for a secondary battery that can be fully charged in just a few minutes.
“Today is truly a historic day for UNIST and the city of Ulsan,” says Dr. Cho. He continues by saying, “This new Lithium-ion battery research center will enable us to create more opportunities for our students and faculty to change the world.”