Conference and Lecture Tour of Turkey

From September –October 2009 

by Prof Dr Lee Sing & Prof Dr Saw Sor Heoh

in collaboration with the Institute for Plasma Focus Study (IPFS), Melbourne and INTI University College (INTI-UC).

(This article is a photo record of the conference and lecture tour.)


Professor Dr Lee Sing and Professor Dr Saw Sor Heoh were invited by the Turkish Science and Research Foundation to participate in a world-first combined Nuclear and Renewable Energy Conference, to promote discussion and awareness of non-fossil fuels as innovative, sustainable and environmentally friendly energy solutions.


Prof Dr Lee Sing served in the Scientific and Consultative Committees (Photo 1)  and gave the first Keynote Address on Fusion Energy and the Plasma Focus while Prof Dr Saw Sor Heoh presented  the invited paper Scaling the Plasma Focus for Fusion Energy Consideratons  in the afternoon session. The role of nuclear fusion energy was emphasized, as a limitless clean energy, which in the time frame of modern human civilization is nearing implementation, with the unprecedented international scientific and political collaboration in the ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor) project. Other smaller nuclear fusion projects also contribute to important databases necessary for the success of harnessing fusion energy; moreover our group has developed an internationally accepted computer code which has provided ground-breaking insights into plasma focus fusion devices.


The Conference was officiated by the Minister of Energy Taner Yildiz and was well-covered by the local media because of the current debate in Turkey on nuclear energy and other energy issues affecting the world and Turkey. (See Photos 1 & 2).


                                                   Photo 1                                                                                                                Photo 2


On the second day of the Conference, Prof Dr Lee Sing and the Conference Organizing Chairman, Prof Dr Mehmet Sahin, were interviewed live on world energy issues by Turkish National TV, TRT Turk for a 30 minute ‘MASA’ programme (Photos 3-5). Prof Lee Sing spoke passionately on nuclear fusion energy as a safe, clean, limitless source of energy that will provide Mankind with all energy needs for millions of years, a role which cannot be undertaken in the long term by any other presently foreseeable sources of energy.


                                                                     Photo 3

                                                            Photo 4                                                                                                            Photo 5


Following the Conference, Prof Dr Lee Sing and Prof Dr Saw Sor Heoh jointly presented a series of talks under the Special Scientific Programme arranged by the Turkish Science & Research Foundation (TUBAV) to promote the research and awareness of nuclear fusion energy.


The first joint talk was given to scientists, researchers and engineers on October 1 at the Turkish Atomic Energy Authority (TAEK) Saraykoy Nuclear Research Training Center on Latest Trends in Plasma Focus Studies. A meeting with the Director and Department Heads of the Center (Photo 6) was followed by a visit to the Saraykoy Plasma Focus Laboratory where Prof Lee & Prof Saw advised the Saraykoy Team on what steps needed to be taken to upgrade their ODAK-3K focus so that it would perform more efficiently. (Photo 7).


                                                             Photo 6                                                                                                                Photo 7


The second joint talk was given to scientists and top science administrators at the Turkish Science and Research Foundation (TUBAV) on Energy Gain from Thermonuclear Fusion. This was followed by an intense and lively discussion, sometimes in Turkish, on the safety, problems and time scale of the international nuclear fusion research efforts. (Photos 8-10).


                                                                        Photo 8


                                                             Photo 9                                                                                                    Photo10


Highlight of the Turkish Scientific Programme Lecture Tour was the conferment by the Turkish Science and Research Foundation (TUBAV) of Honorary Life Membership of Turkish Science and Research Foundation (TUBAV) to Prof Dr Lee Sing and to Prof Dr Saw Sor Heoh; a rare and distinctive honour. (Photos 11-13).


                     Photo 11                                                               Photo 12                                                                                 Photo 13


The third joint talk was given (Photos 14-15) at Gazi University, Technical Education Faculty, on Plasma Focus Fusion Devices. (Photo 16).


                                                   Photo 14                                                                                                                     Photo 15

                                                                         Photo 16                                                            


This series of talks has been successful to generate greater interest in nuclear fusion energy, and contribute to promote greater understanding and interest in this area and strengthen collaborations between IPFS, INTI-UC, NTU/NIE and TUBAV, TAEK and the energy community in Turkey.




A visit was also made to Istanbul Bilgi University on 6 October. Two campuses were visited:


The Dolapdere Campus has functional, attractive design of building in steel. The building won the 2003 European steel building design award. The Istanbul Bilgi University Press publishes a wide selection of books in Turkish and English. The Santral Campus is set in beautiful parkland. Attractive setting includes modern cafes, classrooms, lecture theatres and a Museum of Energy based on the Silahtaraga Power Plant which powered all of Istanbul Electricity in the years 1914-1952. (Photo 17). 


A lunch was hosted by Rector Prof Dr Halil M Guven followed by a meeting with Laureate International Universities Turkey CEO Rifat Saricaoglu (Photo 18). Prof Guven commented on the rare distinction of Honorary Life Membership of TUBAV, before discussions centred on the Bilgi May conference on learning and teaching in relation to the European Higher Education Reform Process known as the Bologna Process with emphases on accountability of teaching, learning outcomes, quality frameworks and lifelong learning goals..


Rector Prof Guven also informed that Bilgi University planned to launch a new Energy Engineering programme and that the proposed innovative programme needed an advanced topic like Nuclear Fusion Energy to spearhead the programme. Our Lecture Tour of Turkey on exactly that topic was therefore opportune. He suggested the possibility for the assistance of IPFS to formulate the Nuclear Fusion Energy component of the Bilgi Energy Engineering programme. 


                                                    Photo 17                                                                                                              Photo 18