Vietnam | Post Doctoral Researcher
Do van Lam Ph.D.
Do Van Lam is a current KIMM post-doctoral researcher, who is researching synthesis and application of metal-organic frameworks and their derivatives for energy storage and solar energy management at the Department of Nano-Mechanics.
- #Post Doctoral Researcher
My name is Do Van Lam from Vietnam. I joined KIMM as a research student at the University of Science and Technology (UST) in 2012 under the considerate supervision of Prof. Dr. Seung-Mo Lee. I earned my Ph.D. in 2018 with a research topic related to the application of atomic layer deposition on carbon-based materials. After graduation, I have been working as a post-doctoral researcher at KIMM until now. My research interests are thin film, metal-organic framework, and energy storage.
Q: Tell us more about your current work at KIMM.
In my Ph.D. study, I focused on the research of thin films by atomic layer deposition, and carbon-based electrode materials for supercapacitors. In my post-doc research, I had joint research with the Korea Institute of Energy Research (KIER) to synthesize highly porous crystalline polymers called metal-organic frameworks. During that time, I developed a laser-based carbonization technique of metal-organic frameworks to prepare metallic carbon composites as electrode materials for supercapacitors, batteries, and electrocatalysts. At present, I am actively conducting research related to the synthesis of metal-organic frameworks for the applications of solar energy management such as solar desalination and radiative cooling.
Q: How did you come to Korea? To KIMM?
After graduating from the Hanoi University of Science and Technology in Vietnam with an excellent degree, I was eligible to apply for a government-funded Ph.D. scholarship to France. During the waiting time, I was introduced by a classmate that a UST professor in KIMM was looking for an integrative student. I tried to apply and got accepted. However, it was a very difficult decision to make since I got accepted to both scholarships at the same time. Each scholarship had its pros and cons. The government-funded scholarship was funded for only 3 years and I had to return to my country once I completed my Ph.D. study, while the UST scholarship was more flexible without any constraints. On the other hand, I might have to spend 6-8 years to complete my Ph.D. in Korea and have a much tougher time than in France. After some consideration, with the youthful enthusiasm, I finally decided to come to Korea, and I have never regretted this decision.
Q: How was your time in Korea?
The first two years in Korea were harsh on me because I received a lot of pressure and stress in research due to its very slow progress. I was able to feel relaxed only after my first scientific paper was published at the end of the second year. After that period, my research went smoother, and I was able to balance my study, research, and life. I was really grateful to the wisdom and professionalism of my supervisor, for I was able to obtain many research achievements through his guidance. I was very proud to receive the UST’s presidential award in 2018 upon my graduation, the Korean permanent resident visa in early 2019, and the upcoming dual citizenship in the next year.
I also had special moments with my wife when we were both UST students in KIMM. With the help of our great friends, we were able to take a four-season wedding album around Korea. We got married in February 2015, traveled to France together in May 2016, and had our first daughter in July 2017 and our second son in February 2020. I am also very thankful that my parents are living with us to take care of our children so that my wife and I can focus on our studies and work without worry.
Q: What do you like the most about KIMM?
The thing I like the most about KIMM is the research environment. My advisor gave me free will to select my research topic so that I could use my full strength and capability to conduct my research. Our group also invested a lot in purchasing new equipment to support our research, so we could speed up our research process by saving a lot of waiting time for measurements in other places. Besides, I also received a lot of active support and helpful comments from friendly and enthusiastic researchers at KIMM.
Since I started my research career at KIMM in 2012, I have seen a lot of changes here. Many researchers in my department have come and left. The research facilities in my group were gradually equipped with new and advanced equipment. The appearance of KIMM was also renewed with new facilities such as the football field, the new dormitory, the hiking trail, and so on. The welfare was improved a lot with better support and closer policy. However, there are also things unchanged such as the cherry blossom on the road to the dormitory every spring, the kindness of my group leader Dr. Jae-Hyun Kim, and the excellent supervision of my advisor Dr. Seung-Mo Lee.
My life in Korea was also filled with plenty of joyful moments. The most unforgettable moment was when my wife gave birth to our first daughter. I cried in joy and happiness when I heard her first crying.
For students and researchers who are searching for a place to advance their careers, KIMM is among the first choices that you should consider. With well-equipped laboratories, great welfare, and friendly colleagues, you will surely achieve many milestones for your future career.