OIST Professor Qi receives Kao Science Award for 2021
Dr. Yabing Qi, a Professor at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) and head of the Energy Materials and Surface Sciences Unit was selected by the Kao Foundation of Arts and Science for the 2021 Kao Science Prize.
The award, which was given in the field of chemistry and physics, was presented to Prof. Qi at a ceremony in Tokyo on June 2, 2022. The award included personal prize money of 3 million yen.
The Kao Science Award aims to promote the advancement of fundamental research made by researchers living in Japan under the age of 45, in either a chemistry/physics field, or medicine/biology field. The theme this year was “surface sciences”, with researchers nominated by their university or institution.
The prize recognized Prof. Qi’s contributions to the development of sustainable, green energy through his research on the surface properties of metal-halide perovskites, a promising new material for creating cheap and efficient solar cells. For example, Prof Qi and his research unit have imaged the surface of metal-halide perovskite at the atomic scale, visualized surface defects, and revealed the effects of chlorine incorporation on perovskite surface stability. Using this fundamental information, they have developed new methods of fabricating perovskite solar cells and modules to increase their efficiency and stability.
In response to receiving the Kao Science Award, Prof. Qi acknowledged the contributions of individuals in the OIST community and beyond.
“First of all, I would like to thank the Kao Foundation for giving me this prestigious award. Also, I want to thank our university, OIST, especially for the strong recommendation from our Dean of Faculty Affairs, Dr. Milind Purohit, and for the help of Mami Takahashi from Faculty Affairs Office, my research unit administrator, Naoko Ogura-Gayler, my unit members, collaborators, and my family,” said Prof. Qi.
“Last but not the least, I want to acknowledge the strong funding support from OIST (in particular the R&D cluster research program and proof of concept program) as well as public funding from Kakenhi and JST A-STEP research grants. All the exciting research discoveries we have achieved so far wouldn’t be possible without such strong support.”