In the middle of October, the group of students and members of the Faculty of Physical Engineering of KPI visited a city which name evokes many historical and cultural reminiscences in any educated person - the ancient but still young Athens nowadays. However, the trip wasn’t a tourist purpose – 10 of our young scientists and students participated in an international five-day seminar for material scientists, or, more precisely, in the educational project "Advanced Training Course" Spintronics Radar Detectors”.

Spintronics and the NATO Program

The project was implemented within the framework of the NATO Science for Peace and Security Program and was focused on improving young physicist-physicists' level of knowledge in the field of state-of-the-art microwave detectors based on torque nano-oscillators. Such spintronic devices provide high resolution and can be used as frequency-tuned resonant microwave detectors for a wide range of telecommunications, radars and smart networks applications. Nowadays spintronics is not even a level of nanotechnology, but of pico technology, the industry in which the new knowledge at the forefront of science is being created through its research. Therefore, the relevance of this topic is beyond doubt, and it is the reason that has determined the success of the NATO Science for Peace and Security program.

The young scientist Igor Vladimirsky, Associate Professor of the Department of Physics of Metals of the Faculty of Physical Engineering, who was one of the main promoters of the project from the Ukrainian side and a member of the organizing committee of the event, tells a little more about the Program, within which this lecture was held: "The NATO Science for Peace and Security Program projects are divided into scientific ones which are funded by the conduct of the research and those aimed at carrying out specific activities. Such efforts may include seminars and trainings in order to increase the level of knowledge of students, postgraduate and young scientists. The project we won and participated in was in the second category."

The National Center for Scientific Research “Demokritos” (Greece, Athens) and the Department of Physics of Metals of the Faculty of Physical Engineering Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute were the seminar’s co-organizers.

Lecturers and the audience

Therefore, at the seminar, Europe's leading scientists in this field gave lectures to students and young researchers on cutting-edge topics and outlined their point of view on a number of issues that are currently the central concerns of the scientists around the world. Furthermore, the excursions to the laborites of the National Centre of Scientific Research "Demokritos" were organized for those who took this course.

The researchers from Greece, Germany, Hungary, France and Ukraine gave lectures for the seminar participants. Professor and Assistant Professor of Igor Sikorsky KPI Serhiy Sidorenko and Igor Vladimirsky, as well as Professor of Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv Alexander Prokopenko were the lecturers who represented our country.

Assistant Professors of the Department of Physics of Metals of KPI Serhiy Konorev and Andriy Burmak, postgraduates of this Department Andriy Orlov, Arsen Gafarov and Pavlo Makushko, students of the Faculty of Physical Engineering Darya Trubchaninova and Darya Nevesela and a student of PTI Yarina Mamchur took part in the seminar too.

On the question concerning the criteria of students' selection for the trip to Athens, Igor Vladimirsky answered: “We tried to select the best representatives of different categories of students - bachelor's, undergraduate and graduate students. Moreover, proficiency in English was a basic requirement for candidates as the lectures were taught in English.”

The materials that the participants returned home with are now being used in the educational process and in scientific research as well. As for the students, they share their first experience of the organization and participating in the international project-grant activities, the knowledge they gained and, of course, the experience of travelling with their classmates. However, that is not all. According to Igor Vladimirsky, for some of them, this knowledge can be useful to their preparation in a course project, for someone it will help to decide on the choice of the topic of the thesis, and for another one - it can be the basis of the dissertation’s section.

How the idea originally came up and who implemented it

It is essential that young scientists, postgraduates and students were the initiators of participation in the project. They prepared project proposals on their own and won a corresponding grant value of EUR 50,000. Moreover, in order to start the project, it was also necessary to create a consortium of European universities to participate in it. This young team also took over the creation of this consortium. Apart from KPI, this consortium was extended to include the universities and research centers in France, Germany, Hungary and Greece. However, the most important thing is that everything was done without top-down tasks, without any compulsion, on its own. The young researchers and students found a topical issue on their own, ensured that they fulfilled all the requirements of the NATO Program and achieved success, which culminated in a trip to Greece. It is worth adding that according to the terms of the NATO Science for Peace and Security Program, representatives of the NATO Member States and NATO Partner countries should participate in the projects. As it is a necessary component of determining the consortium members, the team of the Faculty of Physical Engineering successfully coped with the partner selection to work in the consortium. NCSR “Demokritos” became the main one (Greece is known to be a member of the North Atlantic Alliance). At the same time, the seminar participants had travel, accommodation, food and cultural programme (which was extremely interesting - remember that the training took place in the capital of the ancient world!) funded by the project.

Modern science has one language - English!

It is worth emphasizing that it is simply impossible to get involved in international project-grant activities without the knowledge of English. Therefore, you should know the language so that you can not only read scientific texts but also be able to communicate with colleagues; not only listen to the lecturers but also understand what they talk about... In addition, it will be useful in dealing with everyday issues while in other countries. In order to achieve such a level of language proficiency, one should not rely solely on classroom studies. "It takes constant language practice. It is not enough to attend English classes. You should read a lot of books, including professional literature, and watch movies in original with subtitles," shares his experience Igor Vladimirsky. - People aspiring to become involved in science should understand that there is only one language in modern science - English. "

From the editors

Stop being afraid and start working

…"Advanced Training Course "Spintronics Radar Detectors" Project has been completed. The young researchers of the Department of Physics of Metals of the Faculty of Physical Engineering have gained not only new knowledge but also an invaluable experience. It confirms that getting involved in cooperation with foreign colleagues is quite real. Nowadays competitions for participation in international research or educational programs are often announced. All you have to do is to find your topic and learn how to present your knowledge and skills. In many industries, our level is no lower than that of our colleagues in other countries. Therefore, you just need to get started.