Ateneo Physics student Jude Salinas’s experience at the Asia and Oceania Geosciences Society conference in Taipei International Convention Center last 8-12 August 2011

by Jude Salinas (4 BS Applied Physics-Applied Computer Systems)

First Day, August 8

Jude Salinas, Joseph Angan, and Karl Jamandre in AOGS 8th Annual Meeting in Taipei International Convention Center

Jude Salinas, Joseph Angan, and Karl Jamandre in AOGS 8th Annual Meeting in Taipei International Convention Center

The Asia and Oceania Geosciences Society Conference was held last August 8-12, 2011 at the Taipei International Convention Center. Across the center I saw the Taipei 101, one of the tallest buildings in the world and one of Taiwan’s prominent landmarks. But if you if you just take the photo of just one portion of it you won’t be able to tell if it is a building.

Lunch for our first day is noodles with beef soup. I forgot what this was called. But I notice that food in Taiwan always has large servings.

I was with my batchmate Joseph Angan (5 BS Ps-MSE), together with our research adviser, Dr. Nofel Lagrosas. We watched the opening address of Nobel Laureate Samuel Chao Chunt Ting. His work is on Alpha magnetic spectrometer on the International Space Station. We can only understand until magnetic part. But we are physics people. We enjoyed it even if it still sounds so sophisticated.

I went through the through the exhibits and I wish to talk to the people there. One thing I don’t like about the exhibits is that the people there are not the persons working on the company he is presenting. One frustrating exhibit is that of NASA. I talked to the guy in physics. He cannot understand me. Then I asked where in NASA does he work. He said he worked only in the exhibit area. Because of that experience, everytime I walked around the exhibit I looked at the ID. In it is written the name of the person and on top of it is the school or company.

I met another person, a little girl. She looks so young, but she’s actually a postdoctoral fellow in Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. She said her group does research on earthquakes, tsunamis, volcano, and climate. Under the climate heading, she mentioned something related to my work: regional climate downsacaling of el nino and indian ocean dipole. I said I was interested in El Nino. She wanted to refer me to her research supervisor, but he was not around.

The fellowship night

The fellowship night

During the fellowship night, I enjoyed the food, especially the turkey. About 30 minutes after eating, I decided it is time to meet other people. I was holding my food with my head bent down. I saw IDs. I I want to meet somebody from Singapore. I saw a guy from Nanyang Technological University. So when I got my last meal, I went to his place, but he was gone. I was depressed. I continued walking. Then sombody tapped me in the back. It was the girl I met that morning. She was squashed between two guys and she was calling me.

“Dr. KOH Tieh-Yong is here,” she said as she pointed to a man talking in front of an Australian. Dr. Koh is from the Earth Observatory of Singapore.

I went to Dr. Koh and talked with him.

“Your work is interesting,” he said. “But you need to validate your results using raingauges. If you say Northern Luzon has wet and dry seasons, you only need one rain gauge in that area.”

Dr. Koh gave me his calling card and referred me to a particular book if I have other questions.

Calling cards. I wished we were warned that it is customary to give calling cards. Most people I met have calling cards. I have a calling card from Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). One is ffrom a Filipna in Academica Sinica. There was also this girl from China whom I met in the elevator. She looks so young and friendly. Her name is Nat Tieng Ke. So if our department should send students to conferences, it must make sure the students should have calling cards.

A cultural dance in Taiwan

A cultural dance in Taiwan

The party was fun. There was a little traditional song and dance from from Taiwan. A scientist joined the song and dance.

Too bad I was not able to taste Taiwanese beer. I saw one but I didn’t try it because I was still hungry then. Then the night passed and I never got to drink. The party was nice. The food is good and I got to socialize with scientists.

Second Day, August 9

The second day, August 9, was the day of my poster prensetaton. My work was entitled, “A correlation of TRMM, GPCC and Ground based measurements of monthly raifuall rate in the Manila Observatory.” We posted it that morning. My presentation is still at 4:30 p.m., so I just left my poster there. The one thing that made my presentation unique is that it is full board., 2m x 1m. I thought the rule says nothing smaller than that, but it was actually the opposite. Others are 1 m x 1 m. The other posters are simply bond papers pasted on a cardboard.

There was an old professor from Taiwan. When he passed by my work he said, “Good for the Philippines!” I don’t know what he meant by that. Maybe he thinks it is the first time that such work is being done in the Philippines.

My work is in the Atmospheric Science Division, under the subdivision of Precipitation Science and Applications of Satellite Data in Asia. Solar and Terrestrial Science is in one Division.

I met a fellow Filipino in the conference. His name is Ernest Macalalad. His work is entitled, “Single Frequency Pseudorange corrections for GPS single point positioning using Taiwan ionospheric model.” He is staking up Space Science in National Central University. He is from La Salle. The Filipina earlier took her undergraduate studies in UST and her graduate studies in UP Diliman. Her name is Ferina Datoc. Another Filipino I met is a guy from PAGASA who is finishing his thesis in Taiwan. He is from UP Diliman. We talked a bit. It is nice to meet fellow Filipinos in Taiwan.

The eye of the storm

The eye of the storm

In the afternoon at 4:30 p.m. is my presentation. Before that there were two talks. One is “Paradigms of tropical cyclone intensification” and the other is “Regional climate change: the role of light absorbing aerosols and snow-albedo feedback.” What is intersting about these two talks is the aerosols. Together with me under Dr. Lagrosas is Cheska Siongco who is now in ICTP (International Center for Theoretical Physics), and Joseph Angan , 5th APS-MSE (Applied Physics-Materials Science Engineering). There are the three of us

The first talk is about aerosols. This is Josephs line of work. It has nothing to do with my work. So I fell asleep. Next talk on regional climate change has nothing to do with his work. I was awake but Joseph slept. I have nothhgn to do with aerosols.

There was also the research delegation of Dr. Gemma Narisma. With her is Karl Jamandre and Julie Mae Dado, her two graduate students at Manila Observatory.

The talk was on tropical cyclones . One thing I like about this talk is that it answers my usual questions while I was still doing research at the Manila Observatory: where is the physics here?. In this talk he described tropical cyclones. And you will hear physics terms. If you are a meteorology guy without any background in physics, you would not be able to understand him. My mind says, “Wow!” I now see how physics can really help in understanding these things. He would explain the Coriolis force in storms, the centrifugal force, and various conservation laws. I always wonder about the science in my research. I really felt there is some physics there. I am sure there is. I just have to contitue working.

Then it was my poster presentattion. I saw Dr. Shuji Shimizu of JAXA, Associate Senior Reserarch. EORC. He passed by my poster.

“Sir, this is your satellite,” I said to him. “JAXA and NASA are the ones responsible for the data I was using.”

And we talked.

On Wednesday, after touring Taipei, 101, we headed home.

Taipei International Convention Center

Taipei International Convention Center

A view in Taipei 101

An alien boarding a space ship


About ateneophysicsnews
Physics News and Features from Ateneo de Manila University

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