The power of ideas in scientific research

One believes that the use of the sophisticated equipment is an important factor in the success of the scientific research particularly in the field of heterogeneous catalysis. Not all the good research depends solely on modern equipments. Sometimes, in my opinion, the idea of research is the most determining factor compared to the equipment to produce high impact researches. I always tell my students that the scientist is a ‘problem seeker‘, not ‘problem solver‘. Below (please click the link at the end of this article) is the publication was published when I was a postdoctoral researcher at Hokkaido University. Through a good idea the research was published in a prestigious journal. Here, we only use a gas chromatograph as the only one analytical instrument. This proves that this manuscript published not based on the use of sophisticated equipment but based on a novel idea. In this research, we proposed a new concept in heterogeneous catalysis termed as as ‘Phase Boundary Catalysis‘. Another example of our research was powered with a novel idea was ‘Synthesis of well-aligned titanium dioxide with very high length to diameter ratio synthesized under magnetic field‘. In this paper, we demonstrated for the first time to control the synthesis of titanium dioxide containing surfactant by a simple technique under a magnetic field. This research was a topic of my PhD student.

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Hadi Nur

Hadi Nur is a full professor at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Johor, Malaysia.

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