Jae Wook Chung has been selected as one of the 25 winners of the Green Talents Competition 2013, for his PhD research called: “Removal of viral contaminations by hydrothermal carbonisation (HTC) materials in water treatment”. The competition is initiated by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and focuses on young outstanding minds active in the field of environmental and sustainability research.
Impressed by Chung’s pioneering research
Chung's studies focused specifically on evaluating low-cost carbonaceous material as a virus adsorbent in water treatment. The jury was impressed by Chung’s pioneering research on sustainable water technologies and also the evolution of low-price and decentralised solutions to treat drinking water. The jury considers his approach using local resources for solving local environmental problems an important path.
“My lifetime vision is providing a better environment to the people in need"
Through intensive experience in less-developed communities in countries such as Kenya, Tanzania, Sudan, India and Indonesia, Chung realised inhabitants were suffering from a lack of access to clean water and sanitation. To help those who need it most, Chung devoted his graduate studies to the idea that new technology should be developed based on locally available resources. He pointed out that while there are several commercial decentralised water treatment units that utilise advanced technologies, they are far too expensive for the people who truly need them. Also, the low-cost appropriate technologies such as biosand filtration, ceramic filter, solar disinfection and coagulation-chlorination have limited efficiency on viruses.
Chung has been invited to participate in a two-week science forum in Germany from October 28th until November 9th 2013, in which he and the other winners will visit top locations in the field of sustainability research. In addition, Chung has been given the opportunity to have individual meetings with experts from the same field of research. Moreover, in 2014 Chung will return to Germany for a research stay in one institution of his choice. This entire program is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.