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A Fresh Perspective on Green Development of Cities for a Sustainable World

Aug 30, 2023

Develop. Grow. Succeed.

The August Global Top Scientists Forum, thoughtfully organized by GEC Academy, played host to an inspiring online open lecture delivered by Professor Daniel Prober from Yale University, who also obtained the prestigious Yale Science and Engineering 2019 Award for the Advancement of Basic and Applied Science, as well as the esteemed IEEE Council on Superconductivity Lifetime 'Achievement Award, 2018,' recognizing his enduring and substantial contributions to the domain of superconductive electronics.


With a resounding theme centered around "Green Cities in the Mid-21st Century," Professor Prober's online lecture stood as a beacon of insight in the ever-evolving landscape of sustainable urban development. As the world grapples with the pressing need for environmentally conscious urbanization, Professor Prober's discourse delved deep into the prevailing trends, shedding light on the application and progression of "clean" power generation technologies within the realms of urban architecture and transportation, making a profound impact on the audience, particularly on students from Chinese universities specializing in Physics and Energy and Environmental Engineering. This event ignited a fresh commitment to creating greener and more sustainable cities for the future.

Professor Prober’s lecture overview

The forum commenced with Professor Prober expressing his gratitude for the invitation and providing a concise preview of the lecture's contents. He began by drawing insightful comparisons among various methods of electricity generation, highlighting the detrimental impact of traditional fossil fuel usage on the sustainable development of urban environments. Additionally, he introduced the innovative concept of carbon capture and storage as a pivotal step towards greener cities in the future. Professor Prober passionately advocated for the vigorous development of clean energy sources, promoting a transformative shift from high-carbon to low-carbon energy solutions while moving away from fossil fuels. Among the promising options, he spotlighted renewable sources such as solar energy and wind power as the leading contenders to guide our cities toward a more sustainable, environmentally-conscious future.

Electric power traditionally produced with fossil fuel vs. electric energy produced with renewable solar panels or wind

In terms of Yale University's Technological Innovations, Professor Prober revealed that Yale University’s approach to power generation involves the utilization of natural gas, a resource at the forefront of sustainable practices. Yale University also strategically employs oil as a backup energy source and adopts energy-efficient “co-generation” to reduce dependence on traditional energy sources, significantly lowering harmful emissions like carbon dioxide while greatly improving energy efficiency.

Technological innovations introduction of "co-generation" and "geothermal heating and cooling"

Professor Prober further delved into the realm of urban transportation, explaining the application of diverse green power generation methods. These methods included solar energy, wind power, hydrogen fuel cells, Vehicle to Grid Connectivity, and the revolutionary technology of magnetic levitation. Additionally, Professor Prober emphasized two pivotal future directions for cities in the realm of transportation. Firstly, he underscored the importance of localized transportation units as a means to reduce the carbon footprint and promote sustainability within urban areas. Secondly, he highlighted the trend towards diminishing personal vehicle ownership, emphasizing the significance of shared mobility solutions and their potential to transform urban transportation for the better.

Application of diverse green power generation methods in the field of urban transportation

Towards the lecture's conclusion, Professor Prober offered valuable insights from his experience working with the admission committee at the Yale Engineering School. Beyond addressing common challenges students face when applying for undergraduate or graduate programs, he delved into prospective career pathways for Yale University graduates.


The forum concluded with an insightful Q&A session, during which Professor Prober addressed doubts and questions from students regarding the lecture. He noted that most universities offer energy-related majors and that students have diverse opportunities to unlock their potential. He used his students at Yale as examples to showcase impressive research results, providing inspiration for students to clarify their research directions. Some students also inquired about applying advanced technologies to underdeveloped areas. Professor Prober highlighted that different regions can secure funding and technological support by leveraging their distinctive advantages, providing compelling examples.

Research areas of Applied Physics at Yale University

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