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Bridging Research Frontiers: Li-ion Battery Advancements and Inclusive Chemistry Laboratories for the Visually Impaired

Keynote Address


Professor Siegbert Schmid

Faculty of Chemistry, University of Sydney


This presentation covers two seemingly distinct but interconnected realms in the field of science and technology: the advancements in lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery research and the imperative need for inclusivity in chemistry laboratories for visually impaired people.

In the first part of the talk, the rapidly evolving landscape of Li-ion (and other) batteries will be explored. Li-ion batteries have become the backbone of modern energy storage, powering everything from mobile devices to electric vehicles. The latest developments in Li-ion technology, including improvements in energy density, safety, and sustainability. Understanding these innovations is crucial for addressing the pressing energy and environmental challenges of our time.

The second part of the presentation shifts its focus to inclusivity within the chemistry laboratory setting. We highlight the unique challenges faced by people with visual impairments in pursuing careers and education in chemistry. Drawing attention to these challenges, we explore strategies and technologies that can be implemented to make chemistry laboratories more inclusive. From tactile equipment labels to accessible laboratory protocols and adaptive software, these innovations aim to empower visually impaired individuals to fully participate in hands-on scientific experimentation.

In conclusion, this talk underscores the mutual benefits of advancing Li-ion battery research and fostering inclusivity in chemistry laboratories. It highlights how scientific progress and innovation are intrinsically linked to diversity and equal access. By embracing these principles, we can create a more equitable and sustainable future, where scientific endeavours are truly inclusive, and groundbreaking discoveries emerge from a diverse pool of talent.