Fei; ACers.

H.T. Lin welcomes Dongliang Jiang (left) from China. Also pictured are Lin’s wife, Mei-Ling, and son, Albert Lin. Credit: Fei; ACerS.

After a long day driving from New Mexico, we finally arrived at the fabulous and historic Hotel Del Coronado, the site of the 10th Pacific Rim Conference on Ceramics and Glass Technology (PACRIM 10). Although I am very tired and it is not my first time here, I am still very excited because of the wonderful opportunity to be a student blogger. What I love about this blogging job is that it is the perfect combination of a personal point of view and an objective perspective on scientific research. Also, I enjoy meeting new people with various backgrounds from all over the world.

The first person I met of course was my mentor from the ACerS staff, Eileen De Guire. I was so surprised that the reception was not held in a meeting room as most receptions are, but on the lawn facing the vast ocean. A lot of guests were already there, chatting about science in a very relaxing and friendly atmosphere with the occasional seagull also joining the joyful gathering. Although they were obviously attracted by food, the gulls, together with the ocean in front of us and the hotel behind us, kept the whole reception in great harmony with nature.

Fei; AcerS.

Perena Gouma from State University of New York, Stony Brook. Credit: Fei; AcerS

At the reception, Eileen introduced me to some people who I definitely should know such as the chair of this meeting, H.T. Lin from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and ACerS’ director of publications and meetings, Mark Mecklenborg. I’d like to thank them both for their time and effort in making this meeting possible.

This conference attracted a lot of scientists from different countries such as Japan, Korea, Belgium, France, United States, and China. For example, Dongliang Jiang, a distinguished materials scientist from the Shanghai Institute of Ceramics, commented that this is a big event in the ceramics field, delivering first-hand, cutting-edge research information for all attendees. He told me that his group is mainly engaged in the science and engineering of ceramic materials for industrial applications such as the machinery, energy, transportation, and the chemical industries. I also met Perena Gouma from the State University of New York, Stony Brook, whose work is very interesting to me. Her group manipulates ceramic materials to make all kinds of chemical detectors, biosensors, and hybrid nanoprobes for electronic olfaction systems.

To my delight, I also met several people who are conducting research similar to mine (nanomaterials for batteries and photovoltaics). With the same research focus, we were able to talk in depth and build links for potential collaborations, which demonstrates well one of the most important purposes of the meeting.

After sunset I felt very cold, but I was reluctant to leave because because my heart is filled with excitement and warmed up for the meeting ahead. I am looking forward to tomorrow’s plenary talks.