Materialising a Sustainable Future - 29 September 2020
Tue 29 Sep 2020, 06:00 pm - 8:30pm
Mana Cruising Club
Ngatitoa Domain (off Pascoe Avenue)
Education, Technology Science, Wellington Region,
Wheelchair access, Accessible toilets, Mobility parking
Website or Regt':
Tonight, our speaker will be Professor Justin Hodgkiss, Associate Professor, School of Chemical and Physical Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington and Co-Director, The MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology.
His research group develops new materials for next-generation solar cells and for biosensors with three main research focus areas.
He is a principal investigator in the MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, where he contributes to the theme of materials for energy capture and utilization. His research also involves collaborations with several other research groups at Victoria University, around New Zealand, and around the world.
Justin's research group has pioneered ways of manipulating laser pulses to understand, for example, how solar photovoltaic cells convert light into electricity, or how the skin pigment melanin protects us from UV light – processes which occur on picosecond timescales or faster. Justin is a founding inventor of early-stage biosensor startup, AuramerBio Ltd, is now commercialising laser instrumentation his group invented. He is passionate about helping other scientists to commercialise their research discoveries. Justin completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Otago, before undertaking his PhD at MIT in the USA, postdoctoral research in Cambridge, and returning to New Zealand in 2009.
New Zealand has committed to building a carbon-neutral economy by 2050, but we cannot get close with today's technology – we must innovate. When it comes to carbon and environmental sustainability, some of the stuff that matters most is the stuff that we make things from; materials. Solar photovoltaics, wind turbines, batteries, electric vehicles, passive cooling, carbon capture, renewable fuels, fertilisers, waste, even computers and data centres – these are areas where substantial innovation may get us a long way to a sustainable future.
In his talk tonight, Justin will introduce some of these disruptive innovation opportunities, highlighting emerging materials science research in New Zealand.