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Department of Energy and Environment

Promoting green innovation

To promote green innovation, AIST is developing technologies for increased use of alternative energy technologies, such as renewable energy sources that reduce greenhouse gas emissions (energy creation), high-density storage of energy (energy storage), highly efficient conversion and use of energy (energy saving), effective utilization of energy resources, and evaluation and reduction of environmental risks.

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New Research Results

World’s Highest Critical Current Density in Magnetic Field Realized by Low Cost High Temperature Superconducting Tape

AIST has developed yttrium-based oxide superconducting tapes that allow large critical current capacity in a strong magnetic field. AIST has improved the characteristics of the yttrium-based oxide superconducting tapes by fabricating ultra-fine artificial pinning centers (APCs) with uniform dispersion and high density using a chemical solution decomposition method which costs less than vapor phase methods. This has achieved a maximum critical current density of 4 mega-amperes that can flow while maintaining the superconducting state (at liquid nitrogen temperature, 65 K, per 1 cm2 in a magnetic field of 3T), and the critical current value exceeds 360 amperes.

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Schematic process-flow of the chemical solution deposition method

A New Method for Analysis of Water Treatment Membrane Fouling by Activated Sludge

AIST observed the fouling process of water treatment membranes non-destructively. Two types of model wastewater with different concentrations of organic substances (low load and high load) were treated using a membrane bioreactor to identify the substances and microorganisms that cause membrane fouling. Using a confocal reflection microscope, it was found that polysaccharides are the primary component under low loads while lipids are the primary component under high loads. It was also found using a next-generation sequencer that the microorganisms constituting the biofilm are different when the concentrations of organic substances differ. A new model for the fouling process under high loads was proposed.

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Cell-derived macromolecules in biofilms causing membrane fouling


Research Unit


Open Innovation Laboratory

Since FY 2016, as a part of the “Open Innovation Arena concept” promoted by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), AIST has created the concept of “open innovation laboratories” (OILs), collaborative research bases located on university campuses, and has been engaged in their provision. We are planning to establish more than ten OILs by FY 2020.

AIST will merge the basic research carried out at universities, etc. with AISTʼs goal-oriented basic research and applied technology development, and will promote bridging research and evelopment and industry by the establishment of OILs.


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