On the 30th August 2013, Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) and the European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (EC DG RTD)*1 announced that they would commence support for 3 coordinated projects tackling the "Development of New Materials for the Substitution of Critical Metals". This support, within the framework of JST-EC DG RTD Coordinated Research*2, will be provided as an activity of JST's FY2013 Strategic International Collaborative Research Program (SICORP)*3. The selected projects are as follows:
1. "NOVACAM: Novel cheap and Abundant Materials for catalytic biomass conversion" to be conducted jointly by Wataru Ueda, Professor at the Catalysis Research Center at Hokkaido University in Japan, and Emiel Hensen, Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemistry at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands.
This project aims to develop novel catalyst technology based on the use of abundant elements in catalyst formulations for the conversion of biomass to chemicals and fuels.
2. "HARFIR: Heusler Alloy Replacement For Iridium" to be conducted jointly by Koki Takanashi, Professor and Deputy Director at the Institute for Materials Research at Tohoku University in Japan, and Atsufumi Hirohata, Reader at the Department of Electronics at the University of York in the United Kingdom.
This project aims to develop antiferromagnetic Heusler alloy films which do not use rare earth metal to replace antiferromagnetic IrMn films which have been widely used in spintronic devices, thereby reducing Iridium consumption.
3. "IRENA: Indium replacement by single-walled carbon nanotube thin films" to be conducted jointly by Shigeo Maruyama, Professor at the School of Engineering at the University of Tokyo in Japan, and Esko I. Kauppinen, Professor at the Department of Applied Physics at Aalto University School of Science in Finland.
This project aims to develop high-performance carbon nanotube (CNT) thin-films to completely replace oxide semiconductors that contain the rare metal indium such as ITO and IGZO.
A total of 33 proposals were submitted in response to the joint call for proposals implemented by JST and EC DG RTD, which closed in October 2012. Separate expert evaluations were commissioned by the two parties and conducted according to their respective criteria, which assessed the quality of the research plan and expected effectiveness of exchange, among other aspects. Based on those evaluations, JST and EC DG RTD jointly decided on the three successful projects to select for funding.
Support to both the Japanese and EU teams will commence in September of this year and will continue for 43 months respectively.
*1European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (EC DG RTD):
EC DG RTD supports research and innovation through European Framework Programs, coordinates and supports national and regional research and innovation programs, contributes to the creation of the European Research Area by developing the conditions for researchers and knowledge to circulate freely, and supports European organizations and researchers in their cooperation at international level.
URL of EC DG RTD 's homepage: http://ec.europa.eu/research/index.cfm
*2JST-EC DG RTD Coordinated Research:
Based on an Exchange of Letters, Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) and European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (EC DG RTD) have agreed to support Japanese-EU coordinated research projects. After consultations between JST and EC DG RTD, “Development of New Materials for the Substitution of Critical Metals” has been selected as the field of research in which the coordinated funding will be applied.
*3Strategic International Collaborative Research Program (SICORP):
SICORP is a "top-down type" program that provides support to international research projects with countries and regions, in fields of cooperation designated by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) on the basis of intergovernmental agreements.
URL of SICORP's homepage: http://www.jst.go.jp/inter/english/sicorp/index.html
Japan Science and Technology Agency, Department of International Affairs
K’s Gobancho, 7, Gobancho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-0076
Geng Tu (Dr.)