In March 2017, I travelled to Long Beach, California, USA for the international academic conference, 21st International Conference on Wear of Materials (WOM2017). I have to admit that the whole conference experience is amazing. It brought together the academic researchers from around the world to discuss the latest developments and applications in the area of wear of materials. In terms of myself, a learner, my research horizons definitely were broadened and I learnt a lot of things from the researchers, experts, professors, etc.

Generally, it had been divided into three parts every day: keynote speaking, general sessions and poster session. On the first day, conference chairs held the opening ceremony, and then two professors did great opening keynotes. The keynote speaking was informative and made our area more clear in my mind, even inspired some ideas. After that, it was straight into the general sessions. I wished I could have been in more than one place at once at this moment, as there were so many good topics which caught my eye. In the poster session, I had read many posters and discussed with the authors. On the second day, I listened to the keynote speakers’ presentations and then, rushed between every session meeting room as before. I gave a presentation about the part of my PhD research work on the third day and also got some feedback from the attendees, which was helpful for my research. The conference dinner and awards were held in the Aquarium of the Pacific, Long Beach and Prof. Seong Kwan Rhee gave a speaking about remembering Prof. Kenneth C. Ludema. What an amazing night. A closing ceremony was held by Conference chairs on the fourth morning.

Overall, I am really looking forward to next amazing conference like this. Thanks to the financial support from UOW.

Wenzhen Xia
School of Mechanical, Materials, Mechatronic and Biomedical Engineering

Wenzhen Xia is a current student from the School of Mechanical, Materials, Mechatronic and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Wollongong.