Japanese-German Graduate Externship on Energy Conversion Systems: From Materials to Devices


Otsuka Takahito(在外研究 2023/4/3-2023/11/30)

Research activity in Glass-Group in FAU
During the externship in FAU, we tried to create a new composition glass which can be a functional glass-ceramics. The top left one is the photo of my colleague and I melting the glass liquid with a metal plate for rapid quenching. The top right one is the pristine glass before crystallization. After the crystallization, we succeeded in obtaining the glass ceramics involving a single crystalline phase.

E-MRS2023 spring meeting
I joined the international conference as a chair of an oral session “Photonic Materials: Structure & properties” and for a poster presentation.
The bottom left one is a photo of the poster presentation with my colleague David in front of our poster. The bottom right one is a photo that my colleagues from the IRTG/JGGE project and me having dinner in a restaurant in Strasbourg.
Through the externship, I experienced life in a culture different from Japanese, and collaborative research with other countries. The experience brought me an awareness of the importance of cooperativeness, communication, and mutual understanding in joint work especially between different cultural area people.


GAN Rongguang(在外研究 2023/2/1-2023/7/31)

The research environment in Japan is notably distinct from that in Germany. In Japan, although supervisors may not exert direct pressure, the diligent ethos of both students and teachers often encourages spending extensive hours in the laboratory. Contrastingly, in Germany, this kind of peer-driven pressure is less prevalent. Because Asian students in Germany are often observed to be among the most hardworking. This low-pressure environment enables greater autonomy; whether to attend the laboratory, and the duration of work, are decisions left to the individual’s discretion. This freedom from external pressures often fosters a more relaxed mental state, which can lead to enhanced efficiency.
Furthermore, the opportunity to engage with two supervisors offers not only a broader spectrum of knowledge across different fields but also a diversity of perspectives on research topics. For those with an interest in German culture, the country offers an abundance of museums, providing a rich tapestry of cultural experiences to explore.                                                                                                                                                                                        

Yamamoto Ryota(在外研究 2022/5/16-2022/10/15,  2023/3/1-2023/6/30)

When I visited the laboratory in Germany, the first thing that surprised me was the clean, organized research environment, which allowed me to concentrate on what I needed to do efficiently. Discussion with my supervisors and colleagues of FAU was an important opportunity to improve my research and communication skills. I also enjoyed discussing cultural exchange and German typical daily-life with many colleagues at lunchtime every day. Regular meetings and events provided fascinating opportunities to express our opinions and ideas. One of the best parts of studying abroad is the opportunity to walk around the streets of Germany and get a feel for the European cityscape.

ZHANG Endong(在外研究 2022/10/1-2023/3/31)

 Through the FAU program, I obtained the valuable opportunity to embark on a research stay in Germany. During my research stay in Germany, I had the privilege of gaining access to advanced instruments and equipment not utilized in the Japan lab. This experience not only deepened my knowledge within my specific field but also exposed me to additional areas of expertise beyond my own discipline. I learned numerous formulations and techniques related to film production and contributed to the setup of essential experimental apparatus for the co-lab.
 The co-lab housed a diverse group of doctoral students, fostering an environment that fueled inspiration for my scientific endeavors. During lunch breaks, we often gathered at the Mensa (campus restaurant), engaging in discussions not only about research progress but also sharing insights into cultural differences among Germany, Japan, and China. Topics ranged from hometown delicacies, traditional festivals, and daily life, to tourist attractions. This exchange of ideas provided me with a deeper understanding of the cultural nuances of different countries.
 In Germany, I experienced a leisurely pace of life, contrasting sharply with the fast-paced lifestyle I had previously encountered in Japan. Both lifestyles offered me rich and colorful experiences, providing a comprehensive perspective on the world. In summary, this research stay has had profound significance for both my personal growth and professional development.

Okada Takeshi(在籍期間 2020/4/1-2023/3/31)

During my master’s thesis, I wanted to work on my own research field more deeply, so I had made the decision to pursue a Ph.D. program. Also, I decided to participate in the IRTG/JGGE program because I was stimulated and motivated that this program was the best way to acquire international and academic perspectives and scientific knowledge. I had been involved in research as part of my doctoral program focused on enhancing electric motor performance. Throughout the course of my research, I needed not only a strong foundation in electrical engineering and electromagnetics but also knowledge in computation mechanics, finite element analysis, and relevant software expertise to optimize mechanical structures. Fortunately, through this Cotutelle program, I had the privilege of collaborating with M.Sc. Gabriel Stankiewicz, M.Sc. Chaitanya Dev, and under the guidance of Prof. Dr. Paul Steinmann. Together, we worked collaboratively on the computer-aided engineering and geometrical mechanical design optimization, advancing our research. Our research journey has yielded remarkable research outcomes, which have been consolidated into an academic paper and my doctoral thesis. Beyond the achievements, the opportunity to work alongside them has been an invaluable experience that I believe will shape my future as a researcher. Furthermore, I believe that my research has been greatly enriched by the opportunity to attend lecture courses and tutorials held by various famous professors, and witness presentations by Ph.D. students, all of whom shared insights from diverse fields that are far from my own expertise. In this context, the enthusiastic guidance provided by my German and Japanese supervising professors, coupled with ongoing conversations and discussions with the German project members, has significantly expanded the breadth of my research and propelled a remarkable improvement in my English language skills. Through these experiences, I deeply appreciate that I had been able to gain invaluable insights and experiences that would have been impossible to acquire through a doctoral program in Japan alone. Now that I have successfully completed the IRTG/JGGE program’s doctoral program, I am confident that a promising future as a researcher awaits me.


Choi Min uk(在籍期間 2019/10/1-2023/3/31)

I joined the JGGE program in 2020. Through this program, I have learned and grown a lot. First, my English skills have improved dramatically. At the beginning of the program, I was not confident in speaking English. However, as I progressed through the program and had more opportunities to speak in English, I gradually became more comfortable with English. Also, through the program, I was able to broaden my insights; by interacting a lot with friends from different countries during my participation in JGGE, I exchanged opinions with people who have very different cultures and values from those in Japan. This experience broadened my perspective and allowed me to have a more global viewpoint, as I was able to learn about different ways of thinking and living from Japan. Furthermore, it gave me an opportunity to think about my future, and through my contact with various themes and people at JGGE, I have come to realize that in my future I would like to be active not only in Japan but also in the world. With this experience, The JGGE project was an invaluable experience for me. I believe that I have learned and grown a lot during the project. I hope to use this experience to grow even more in my future life.



DUAN Xianyi(在外研究 2022/6/1-2022/11/30)

During my 6-month research experience at FAU, I found the differences between the Asia and European academic environments. the European academic setting at FAU embraced a more interactive and participatory approach. Students were encouraged to question, analyze, and engage in critical thinking. Professors fostered an atmosphere of intellectual curiosity, where debates and discussions were valued as integral components of the learning process. The emphasis was on developing independent thinking and research skills, rather than relying solely on facts. The structured and disciplined approach in Asia instilled a strong foundation in fundamental knowledge, while the more open and exploratory atmosphere in Europe encouraged creativity and independent thought. My time at FAU not only broadened my academic horizons but also allowed me to appreciate the diversity of perspectives in the global academic landscape.

Okada Takeshi(在外研究 2022/6/1-2022/9/30)

Discussing research in English with German professors and Ph.D. students on-site offered me a significant opportunity that greatly enhanced both my abilities and the quality of my research. Beyond the academic realm, I had the wonderful chance to engage in cultural exchanges by being invited to BBQs and beer festivals by the local staff and students. These enjoyable experiences allowed me to connect and share updates on our lives. Additionally, exploring the streets of Germany and immersing myself in European culture has been one of the most rewarding aspects of my overseas research journey.     

LOBO Ntumba(在外研究 2022/5/1-2022/10/31)

Overseas Research Experience

By immersing myself in both the autonomy-focused approach of Germany and the structured approach of Japan, I have developed a balanced set of research skills. This experience has taught me to be both independent and self-directed, while also appreciating the importance of guidance and structure. Navigating these diverse research environments has enhanced my adaptability, enabling me to adjust my working style according to the context and requirements of each project. The combination of the German approach, which promotes creativity and independent thinking, and the Japanese approach, which emphasizes discipline and precision, has cultivated a well-rounded research mindset. I strive to be both innovative and meticulous in my work. Working in these distinct cultural and academic environments has also improved my intercultural communication skills and cultural competence, which are valuable in today’s globalized research and job market. Building a diverse professional network has been beneficial for future collaborations and career opportunities. Experiencing the advantages and disadvantages of both approaches has led to personal growth, as I have learned to navigate challenges, adapt to different environments, and develop a versatile research approach. Thus, conducting research in both Germany and Japan has provided me with a comprehensive and diverse research experience, combining the best of both worlds in terms of autonomy, structure, creativity, and discipline.


Md Ismail, Haque(在籍期間 2019/10/1-2022/3/31)

Motivation of doctoral research & JGGE Program: I think that it is a good opportunity to create joint researcher developmental progress. It can also help to promote more systematic academic exchange between universities and graduate schools in Japan and Germany by sharing update knowledge about. There is an attractive opportunity to learn and study more deeply scientific and advanced knowledge in a particular area by doctoral research.
Purpose for pursuing the doctoral program:
 ・To create technology leaders who can take challenges of the world and achieve skills and attitude to be responsible and thoughtful contributions to the society.
・ For outstanding research results such as the creation of new concept and new technologies in a particular topic.
・ To become renowned scientist who are international and have a broad perspective on various technologies and social trends and high research capabilities in any specific field.
・ Conducting joint researcher developmental activities in doctoral courses such as JGGE, FRIIS and FRIMS etc.
・ To promote more systematic academic exchange among different universities over the world, and build an international excellency by involving in the doctoral research.
・ Internationalizing and raising the standard of research for the benefit of humanity.

山本 裕太(在籍期間 2019/10/1-2022/3/31)

JGGEのプログラムでは、普段では関わることのできなかったドイツの学生とさまざまなイベントを通じて意見を交換したり議論をしたりと、日本の博士課程だけではできない貴重な体験をさせていただきました。特に日独の学生間での共同研究ではそれぞれのできることを擦り合わせてディスカッションをして、より良いものを目指していくといった過程を経験できたのは非常に良い経験になりました。加えて、さまざまな先生方の講義やチュートリアルやコチュテル生のプレゼンテーションを通じて、自分の研究とは全く異なる分野の話を間近で聞くことができたことも自身の研究に対して良い影響を与えてくれたと思います。私は元々英語が苦手でこのコチュテルプログラムでも参加当初はうまくやっていけるかも心配な状態でした。そんな中で、日独の指導教員の方々からの熱心な指導をいただき、同じプロジェクトに所属しているドイツ側のプロジェクト生と会話や議論を重ねていくことで、自身の英語能力を飛躍的に向上できたと私は考えております。その結果、Annual eventでのプロジェクトプレゼンテーションや博士論文公聴会での発表など長時間の英語プレゼンテーションをやり遂げることができる程に成長して、英語での発表や討論などへの心理的なハードルも下げることができました。これらのように、JGGEプロジェクトに参加することによって、おそらく日本のみの博士課程プログラムでは到底得ることのできなかった貴重な体験をさせていただいたこと、英語をはじめとして研究者に必須の能力を向上させる機会をいただいたことに感謝いたします。