Tohoku University. Research Profiles

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"S" Researcher - 43 Result(s)

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A Novel Process for Continuous Production of High Quality Biodiesel with Ion-Exchange Resin Catalysts

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We successfully developed a continuous production process for high-quality biodiesel. This production technology is very simple, just passing through the reactors packed with ion-exchange resins without complicated upstream and downstream processes, which provide additional production cost and environmental stress and the entire process is fully automatic. With this technology, you can easily produce high-quality biodiesel from various cheaper oils with fatty acid content up to 100%.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

This innovative technology succeeds in solving the serious problems in the current biodiesel production, restriction by shortage of feedstock supply and the unstable quality of biodiesel due to the soap formation. This technology also applies to the production of fatty acid methyl ester, a starting material for surfactant production, which is an important intermediate step in oleochemistry.

Graduate School of Engineering
SHIBASAKI-KITAKAWA, Naomi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Selective recovery of tocotrienol from vegetable oils using ion-exchange resins

Features

Tocotrienol, one of vitamin E, has recovered by the conventional method with molecular distillation from deodrizer distillate discharged from the oil refining processes. However, tocotrienol easily loses its activity due to its low thermal stability, so that its recovery ratio and purity were extremely low. We proposed a novel method to selectively recover tocotrienol by adsorption/desorption using anion-exchange resin at 50 degree C. Tocotrienol is retained on the resin by ion-exchange reaction, and then released and recoverd from the resin by other ion-exchange reaction. Prior to the adsorption/desorption, free fatty acid, a major component of the feed, should be removed by esterification using cation-exchange resin at 50 degree C.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

This innovative technology succeeds in solving the serious problems in the current tocotrienol production, the large weight loss due to the thermal decomposition and large amount of remaining impurities. This technology applies to the production of not only tocotrienol but also tocopherol as bioactive compounds s in food chemicals.

Graduate School of Engineering
SHIBASAKI-KITAKAWA, Naomi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Biological Application of Scanning Probe Microscope

Features

We have invented a unique method to non-invasively evaluate the quality of individual mammalian embryos based on oxygen consumption. A Pt microelectrode was scanned near the single embryo sample to obtain oxygen concentration profile. Respiration activity of single embryo was estimated based on spherical diffusion theory. Further, it was found that the respiration activities of individual embryos corresponded the developmental potential of the embryos. Independently, we have developed a procedure of mRNA quantification from single-cell based on SPM featuring multi-functional probes. Next, we are going to combine the two methods mentioned above for quality control of mammalian embryos and embryonic stem cells.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

Our methods will be applied for assisted reprodictive technoloy (ART), pancreatic islet transplantation, or animal breeding.

Graduate School of Engineering
SHIKU, Hitoshi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Room temperature bonding using thin metal films (Atomic Diffusion Bonding)

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Atomic diffusion bonding of two flat wafers with thin metal films is a promising process to achieve wafer bonding at room temperature. High surface energies of metal films and a large atomic diffusion coefficient at the grain boundaries and film surfaces enable bonding at room temperature without unusually high loading pressure. This technique, which enables bonding of any mirror-polished wafer, is gaining wider use for fabricating optical and electrical devices. Moreover, bonding of mirror polished metals and polymer sheets can be achieved, which further extends the application of this bonding technique.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

Optical, power and electrical devices, MEMS, bonding of polymer sheets, metals, and ceramics for precision mechanical equipments.

Frontier Research Institute for Interdisciplinary Sciences
SHIMATSU, Takehito, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy as a New, Non-Invasive Angiogenic Therapy

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Extracorporeal shock wave (SW) therapy was introduced clinically more than 20 years ago to fragment kidney stones, which has markedly improved the treatment of urolithiasis. We found that a low-energy SW (about 10% of the energy density that is used for urolithiasis) effectively increases the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in cultured endothelial cells. Based on this in vitro study, we have initiated in vivo studies and have demonstrated that extracorporeal cardiac SW therapy with a low-energy SW up-regulates the expression of VEGF, induces neovascularization, and improves myocardial ischemia in a porcine model of chronic myocardial ischemia, without any adverse effects in vivo. On the basis of promising results in animal studies, we performed a series of clinical studies in patients with severe coronary artery disease without indication of PCI or CABG, including, firstly, an open trial followed by a placebo-controlled, double-blind study. In both studies, our extracorporeal cardiac SW therapy improved symptoms, exercise capacity, and myocardial perfusion in patients with severe coronary artery disease. Importantly, no procedural complications or adverse effects were noted. The SW therapy was also effective in ameliorating left ventricular remodeling after acute myocardial infarction (MI) in pigs and in enhancing angiogenesis in hind-limb ischemia in rabbits. Based on these animal studies, we are also conducting clinical studies in patients with acute MI and in those with peripheral arterial disease. Thus, our extracorporeal cardiac SW therapy is an effective, safe, and non-invasive angiogenic approach in cardiovascular medicine and its indication could be extended to a variety of ischemic diseases in the near future.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

The treatment for severe angina pectoris was approved as a highly advanced medical treatment by Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Japan in 2010.
The low-energy SW therapy would be applicable to a wide range of diseases. Your inquiries about the collaborative research are always welcome.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Graduate School of Medicine
SHIMOKAWA, Hiroaki, Professor MD, PhD

Vision Sciences and Human Interfaces

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We study human vision and use the knowledge of the vision system for image sciences. Our research focuses on vision sciences from early to high level processes. Target processes include early passive visual processes such as motion, depth and color perception, and high level processes such as attention, interaction between vision and haptic perception and implicit effect of the perception. Our approach includes visual psychophysics, brain activity measurements, and computer modeling.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

We apply the knowledge obtained from the basic research to propose methods to evaluation of displays, image contents, visual environments, and so on.

Research Institute of Electrical Communication
SHIOIRI, Satoshi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Theoretical Design of New Materials and Device Functionality based on First-principles Calculations

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We are doing theoretical research on electrical conductivity in magnetoresistive devices using highly spin-polarized materials. The aim is to achieve very functional spintronics devices such as read-out heads for ultrahigh-density magnetic recording and non-volatile spin memories. We also investigate magnetoresistive devices using perpendicularly magnetized materials to ensure endurance against thermal fluctuations of the magnetization. We successfully achieve a guideline for improvement of the magnetoresistive performance by designing the crystal structure at the interface between ferromagnets and oxides theoretically.
We believe that first-principles calculations, which need no empirical parameter, play a very important role in research and development of various materials. Please contact us if you want to collaborate with us.

Research Institute of Electrical Communication
SHIRAI, Masafumi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Prevention and amelioration of late-onset hypogonadism by food ingredients

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Late-onset hypogonadism (LOH) is induced by age-related decline of testosterone synthesis, which leads to decrease muscle and sexual nature as well as mental symptoms such as depression. Now great attention is focused on prevention and amelioration of LOH via ingestion of foods and supplements.

We developed screening system of functional ingredients from food extracts for anti-LOH using testis-derived cells, and clarified that vitamins, nutraceuticals, and edible plant extracts have potentiating activities for the production of testosterone.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

Graduate School of Agricultural Science
SHIRAKAWA, Hitoshi, Professor Doctor of Agricultural Science

Network Roaming System with Flexible Access Control

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The laboratory works on development of authentication wireless LAN systems which refer user attribute to realize flexible access control capability.Improvement and evaluation of new access control is devised based on experience of operation of an international wireless lan roaming service ‘eduroam' which is based on 802.1x authorization protocol.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

The development contains application of OpenFlow technology to select a connecting network depending on user affiliation, as well as access control based on pre-defined attribute information.

Cyberscience Center
SONE, Hideaki, Professor PhD

Cavitation Peening

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Surface modification method to improve fatigue strength has been developed using cavitation impacts, which are normally causes severe damage in hydraulic machineries. The method was called "cavitation peening". In order to make clear the mechanism, a load controlled plate bending fatigue test machine was developed. It was proved by using the test machine that the threshold level of stress intensity factor was improved about 1.9 times by cavitation peening. The mitigation of hydrogen embrittlement by cavitation peening was also improved.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

The cavitation peening can apply to component of automobile and forging die. We hope to conduct collaborative research with a willing company for a practical application of this technology in industry.

Graduate School of Engineering
SOYAMA, Hitoshi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Reactor Operation Monitoring by Neutrinos

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Neutrino is an elementary particle which is produced in beta decays of fission products. Instantaneous neutrino flux from nuclear reactor is proportional to the operation power and its long term decrease per thermal power is related to burn up of the fuel. Reactor operation monitoring by neutrino is one of the candidates of IAEA novel technology program. Research Center for Neutrino Physics is developing a reactor operation monitor by making use of technologies of neutrino detection for elementary particle physics.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

If a neutrino detector is installed at a reactor, monitoring of reactor operation is possible independent from the current system. Practical tests will be necessary for neutrino detector R&D at operating reactors and cooperation from electric power companies is necessary.

Research Center for Neutrino Science
SUEKANE, Fumihiko, Professor PhD

Advanced Wireless Information Technology

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Toward the realization of a ubiquitous and broad-band wireless network, we are actively engaged in the research work on dependable and low power consumption advanced wireless IT. We cover the whole technical fields from the lower to higher layers, i.e., signal processing, RF/Mixed signal device, antenna, MODEM and network technologies.As the studies on signal processing, RF/Mixed signal device and antenna technologies, we are developing RF/Millimeter-wave RF CMOS IC's, antenna integrated 3-dimensional system in package (SiP) transceiver modules, digital/RF mixed signal IC's.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

If you are interested in a collaborative research work on above topics, please contact us via e-mail.

Research Institute of Electrical Communication
SUEMATSU, Noriharu, Professor

Development of Advanced Device and Process Technologies and New Image Sensors

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Toward the ultimate performances of image sensors, advanced research activities are being conducted that cover a wide range of technology fields from cleanroom infrastructure, materials, process equipment, process, device, circuit, assembly, signal processing, measurement/evaluation and reliability. Following technologies have been successfully commercialized:
A fast and accurate measurement technology of electrical characteristics for over 1 million transistors
A wide dynamic range CMOS image sensor technology capturing images over five decade brightness ranges
An ultra-fast CMOS image sensor technology with 10 million frames/sec

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

Followings are available for industry collaborators:
A. 200mm-diameter-wafer silicon device fabrication utilizing the ultra-clean facility including wafer mutual fabrication processing between device manufacturers.
B. Process technology development and various kinds of analyses.
C. Development of new image sensors.

Management Science and Technology, Graduate School of Engineering
SUGAWA, Shigetoshi, Professor PhD

Magnetic Materials (Permanent Magnets, High Frequency Materials, Microwave Absorbers)

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The objectives of my researches are the development of high performance magnets and improvement of their magnetic properties. I have already developed following high performance magnets, such as Nd-Fe-B magnets using didymium, Sm-Fe-N high coercive powders prepared by HDDR and Fe-Cr-Co magnets. Recently, I have studied about the reduction of Dy content in Nd-Fe-B magnets for the use of HEV and have succeeded to develop high coercive Dy-free Nd-Fe-B sintered magnets by decreasing the grain size. I have also developed new kinds of microwave absorbers for the use in the frequencies of GHz range using permanent magnetic materials or nanoparticles.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

High performance magnetic materials can be used in many applications in automobile, home electronics, IT and medical industries. We hope to conduct collaborative researches with companies producing magnetic materials for the use in these applications, which aims to improve magnetic properties or to develop new magnetic materials.

Department of Materials Science, Graduate School of Engineering
SUGIMOTO, Satoshi, Professor Doctor of Engineering

Brain Mechanism Realizing Human Mind

Features

I am investigating the brain mechanism of human mind. Specifically, my target is the internal schema that dissociate the self and other in the following three layers: physical, interpersonal, and social domains.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

  • Improvement of the interface of the system
  • Clarifying the neuro-cognitive mechanism of the effect on the customer
  • New concept of the customer satisfaction
  • Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer
    SUGIURA, Motoaki, Professor MD PhD

Programming Language Theory and Computation Models

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Our laboratory conducts leading research on programming language theory and high-level computation models. In particular, we focus on research and application of (general proof methods for) program equivalence, functional programing, and type systems (also known as lightweight formal methods), which are attracting revived interests in recent years. Our Japanese translation of "Types and Programming Languages" (Benjamin C. Pierce, University of Pennsylvania)---compiled in cooperation with engineers from top-level electronics and software companies in Japan---has become the 42nd bestseller (rather exceptional as an academic Publications) among new books in Amazon.co.jp. For more information, please see the Web page: http://www.kb.ecei.tohoku.ac.jp/~sumii

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

Our technology can be used for design and development of software artifacts, especially programming languages and tools including DSL (domain specific languages), as well as application of functional programming, type systems, or formal methods.

Graduate School of Information Sciences
SUMII, Eijiro, Professor

Study on Phase Change Materials for PCRAM Application

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Phase change random access memory (PCRAM) has attracted attention as next-generation non-volatile memories. A conventional PCM is Ge-Sb-Te which shows a fast crystallization speed and an excellent reversibility of phase transition. However, Ge-Sb-Te has a low crystallization temperature of about 150 ºC and a high melting temperature of over 600 ºC , which limits data retention and causes high power consumption, respectively.
We have developed a new phase change materials with high crystallization temperature and low melting point such as Ge-Cu-Te etc, which have high potential as PCRAM materials with high thermal stability and low power consumption (Fig.1,2).

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

Our materials are developed for PCRAM, DVD recording materials etc. We hope the collaboration research with companies which are interested in our developed phase change materials.

Graduate School of Engineering
SUTOU, Yuji, Associate Professor Doctor of Engineering

Development of disease-resistance animals by animal breeding method and dietary additive

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The most important disease in domestic and foreign pig industry is the pig respiratory disease complex (PRDC) that the pigs show the respiratory trouble by the infection of two or more pathogens. Pigs were selected for low direction of mycoplasma pneumonia (MPS) lesion for fifth generation in a joint research with Miyagi Prefecture Livestock Experiment Station. As a result, the lesion of MPS was decreased, a natural immunity (phagocyte activity; PA, the ratio of granular leukocyte to lymphocyte; GLR) and cellular immunity increased and SRBC specific antibody production (AP) was controlled. Dietary addition of seaweed and licorice enhanced the immune function in the peripheral blood and mucosa in swine. Furthermore, dietary addition of licorice induced the enhancement of mucosal immunity and anti-inflammation effect in the peripheral tissues. These naturally derived products are useful for the reduction of dietary addition of antibiotics in the pig industry. In addition, we selected for the natural immunity, the acquired immunity, and both of the mice during 20th generation, and the immunogenic property and disease resistance of these mice were investigating. We hope to conduct collaborative research with a willing company for a practical application of this technology in industry.

Graduate School of Agricultural Science
SUZUKI, Keiichi, Professor Doctor of Agriculture

Exploring the change in fauna and flora from the results of the natural history of Tokugawa Japan

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The natural history as nomenclature and description flourished in the 18th and early 19th century in Western countries, while in Japan as an exception in non-Western world, a characteristic description system was developed in the same period. And thus vast information concerning the flora and fauna in Japan was collected and organized. We are to make use of the results of the natural history of Tokugawa Japan for the diachronic environmental Studies. Especially as for indicator species we extract and reclassify the reliable materials from the literature and documents of Edo era from the perspective of the current taxonomy. And we compare them carefully with the scientific achievements after Meiji era aiming to point out the environmental changes in Japan and its surrounding areas. For example, the drastic changes in some geese populations wintering in Japan correlate strongly with the damages to the environment given by the developments in Far Eastern Siberia by the Russian Empire and in the Kuril Islands by Japan. We are prepared to provide academic consultations to corporations interested in our research.

Graduate School of International Cultural Studies
SUZUKI, Michio, Professor Ph.D.

Development of Novel Bone Substitute Biomaterials Showing Highly Osteoconductive Property

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Novel bone substitute biomaterials should have a property not only to support cellular attachment on the material surfaces but also activate cellular function of osteoblasts that promote regeneration of bone tissue. Our laboratory successfully developed such materials composed of octacalcium phosphate (OCP) (Suzuki O et al. Biomaterials 27:2671, 2006), obtained by a restricted synthesis condition originally developed, with specific crystal characteristics, and various natural polymers, such as gelatin, collagen, alginate and hyaluronic acid. The materials consist from OCP and these polymers are capable of enhancing new bone formation concomitant with their own biodegradations. The concept to develop such materials is that (1) design of reaction of calcium phosphate ceramics and the synthesis; (2) design of material strength to meet the mechanical stress from living body; (3) selection of natural and synthetic polymer materials for the calcium phosphate ceramics.

Targeted Application(s)/Industry

We are prepared to provide academic consultations to companies interested in our research.

Division of Craniofacial Function Engineering, Graduate School of Dentistry
SUZUKI, Osamu, Professor Doctor in Medical Sciencese