Home  Student Story  Hamidreza Arandiyan 

He graduated from Iran University of Science and Technology, the same school from which the former president of Iran Ahmadinejad graduated. He was received by the president as an outstanding student representative. He won several scholarships, including the Tsinghua University Scholarship for Comprehensive Performance and the Chinese Government Scholarship. He is the first overseas student to win the Top Grade Scholarship at Tsinghua University. He ranked second in his major at this university where top students enroll. He published 9 SCI papers, 1 EI paper and 7 International Conference papers as first author, and published 17 SCI papers as a joint author. He is Hamidreza Arandiyan from Iran, a 2010 doctoral graduate from College of the Environment of Tsinghua University. Hamidreza said with a smile, that his family name is Arandi, which sounds like R&D (Research and Development), so "I am born for research".

"I must work very hard, to look effortless"

Hamidreza graduated from Iran Assad University as an undergraduate, and graduated from Iran University of Science and Technology with a Master's degree. In 2011, he was admitted to Institute of Environmental Science and Engineering Eisciplines of Tsinghua University as a doctorate student in Air Pollution Control, mentored by Professor Li Junhua. When he first entered Tsinghua University, the tutor told him that one must work really hard in here. When there is an intense research task, he has to spend the whole week in the lab from eight in the morning till two the next morning, in addition to his regular classes and student activities. Hamidreza likes doing experiments, because he "enjoys the fun of creating something new".

However, most of the time, it’s not a fun experience to do experiments. They always come along with the pains of failure and frustration, and it takes great courage and patience to perform repeated experiments. Experiments with long and complex processes are very prone to errors, while the experimenters often have no idea where the problems lie, so they always have to start all over again. Hamidreza said, the more mistakes there are, the more we need to be calm, so as to find out the problem. "I must learn to solve the problem on my own in the course of independent research, for this is also a way of accumulating experience for the coming twists and turns on the future road of scientific research."

Professor Li Junhua not only guides Hamidreza on exploration and innovation in the world of science, but also creates all conditions possible to help him adapt to his studying and life in China. Professor Li asks her students to communicate in English during weekly group meetings. Hamidreza feels very touched and says that "I am sincerely grateful to Professor. Li for her help and giving spirit". Soon, he blended into the research group. At the same time, the international atmosphere in Tsinghua kept Hamidreza from feeling "all alone in a foreign land". Hamidreza couldn’t go home for three years, and spent about three-quarters of his time in the lab. "I love Tsinghua, and my job." To him, the lab has become his "warmest home". On the Top Grade Scholarship Winner Exchange Meeting held in November this year at Tsinghua University, Hamidreza expressed his understanding with a special equation. If the 26 English letters correspond 1 to 26, then luck takes up 47%, knowledge 96%, hardworking 98%, and only attitude 100%! He told himself, "I must work very hard, to look effortless".

Never Forget Your Original Intention

Hamidreza's hometown of Iran is one of the countries in the world most abundant with petroleum and natural gas reserves. They have brought great opportunities for national development, as well as environmental problems. That is why Hamidreza chose the chemical engineering major when he applied. He hopes the research he does in the future can effectively solve air pollution problems. "If we can invent a exhaust gas purification catalyst, we can save lives of those people." This was Hamidreza’s original intention to engage himself in the research. During his stay at Tsinghua University, Hamidreza developed a three-dimensional macroporous material which is to be installed in the exhaust pipe in the rear of the car, and can effectively decompose pollutants such as nitrogen oxide and sulfur oxides, thus greatly reducing the content of PM2.5 in the air.

In the 2013 "Tsinghua – The Dow Sustainable Development Innovation Challenge" provided by Dow Chemical Corporation, Hamidreza became the only winner in Chinese region, and one of only 16 winners in the world. His research achievements garnered him recognition by international peers. Speaking of the design of three-dimensional macroporous catalytic converter, a relevant trip must be mentioned.

On a trip to Tibet, Hamidreza was deeply attracted to a typical Tibetan decoration, whose unique design triggered a feeling of inspiration within Hamidreza. "Can I design a catalyst with this three-dimensional structure", he thought. After returning to Beijing, Hamidreza immediately threw himself in the lab. He recalled that in class, a teacher once said, “Chinese sages deem that the essence of human life is actually plain and simple, while people always make it complex,” so he realized the same thing should apply to the catalyst; despite its sophisticated principle, the external structure of it should be simple and clear". He suddenly realized that in fact science is not all that sophisticated, but a "reflection of everyday life". The unity of opposites of simplicity and complexity might just be the highest level of scientific research. After repeated attempts, Hamidreza finally succeeded in applying this inspiration to the scientific research field, and designed the three-dimensional structure for the macroporous catalyst.

Blending of Two Cultures

After Hamidreza came to Tsinghua University, he started to learn the Chinese language and Chinese culture, and he joined Chinese student associations. He can be seen everywhere, in groups such as the Badminton Association, Photography Association, Mountaineering Association and International Student Volunteer Activities. In the volunteer activity of Centennial Tsinghua Anniversary, Hamidreza was responsible for foreign guests' reception. He is also a great embodiment of a Chinese adage "read ten thousand books, travel ten thousand miles".

In his leisure time, he enjoys traveling, “measuring the vast area of China with his feet”, and enjoying the beautiful scenery of China with his eyes. "I love China, and I like exploring the different culture and customs here." Hamidreza has walked through more than 300 cities in China over the last three years. Wherever he goes, he records local customs with his camera. Hamidreza also likes talking with Chinese friends, introducing them to Iranian literature, music and philosophy. Hamidreza says he wants to continue living in China, and enhance cultural, academic and economic exchanges between these two ancient civilizations. "I will pay more attention to the common problems of Chinese and Iranian people in the future, and I hope my academic research can better promote the development of the two countries, and the friendship between the people."

Hamidreza loves making friends and interpersonal communication. Per Hamidreza's request, the author will leave his e-mail ddress:hamid_arandiyan@yahoo.com