Associate Professor Sainoki’s update from the US

Dec 4, 2017

– From Associate Professor Sainoki @ Penn State –

It has already been three weeks since I arrived at State College, Pennsylvania. The number of students living in the area is about 50,000, as is the population of the borough. As you can see in the photo of my commute below, it is a rural area with nothing but nature. The stars are very beautiful at night.

I work in Professor Derek Elsworth’s lab in Pennsylvania State University. Prof. Elsworth’s field of expertise is Petroleum Engineering, with emphasis on fluid behavior in bedrock. Since my field is geothermal reservoir fluid behavior and relevant micro vibration, I asked if he would allow me to work in his lab. I wanted to learn from him and collaborate in the future. Prof. Elsworth is very active experimentally, but my two-month stay here is too short for me to implement my own experiment. My work mostly consists of reading and discussing his papers, and trying to build numerical model simulation basics for a geothermal reservoir. I have only one month left here, but I will do my best to get as much done before I return to Kumamoto.

The photos below were taken on campus. Penn State is enormous (5 times bigger than Hokkaido University), and quite a number of buildings are scattered across the grounds. I usually only go to my building, and if I tried to remember all the buildings, it would take weeks!

We had Thanksgiving Day last week. The university was off for nine days and Prof. Elsworth invited his lab members, including me, to his house as he has done for the past 30 years. We had a nice potluck party, and enjoyed the turkey that Prof. Elsworth cooked.