HALBAN Prof. Dr. Hiroshi Amano, the Nobel Prize Winner in Physics (2014), gave a public lecture entitled “Brighter World and Sustainable Life with Blue LED and Transformative Electronics” at the German University of Technology in Oman (GUtech) on Monday evening. He was accompanied by the former Japanese Ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman, H.E. Seigi Marimoto. Prof. Hiroshi Amano is currently on a visit to the Sultanate of Oman. Prof. Dr. Hiroshi Amano was awarded jointly for the Nobel Prize in Physics with Prof. Dr. Isamu Akasaki and Prof. Dr. Shuji Nakamura. The three scientists received the Nobel Prize for their invention of efficient blue light-emitting diodes which has enabled bright and energy-saving white light sources, LED lights.
Prof. Dr. Hiroshi Amano is a Doctor of Engineering. He is the Director of the Center for Integrated Research of Future Electronics (URFE) at the Institute of Materials and Systems for Sustainability (IMaSS) and he is the Director of the Akasaki Research Center at Nagoya University (Japan). Initially Prof. Amano studied electrical engineering at the university in Nagoya, which awarded him his doctorate in 1989. In 2002 he became a professor at Meijo University in Nagoya and later moved to Nagoya University. “We are honoured to welcome Prof. Hiroshi Amano at our university,” said Prof. Dr. Michael Modigell, Rector of GUtech while stressing that there are challenges researchers have to cope with. “Curiosity, spontaneity, thinking out of the box and the willingness to take risks and fail are important features for a successful research career.”
Prof. Hiroshi Amano started his research on LED lights already in 1981, when he joined a group of researchers as an under-graduate student. “At that time the energy consumption was high and he wanted to find a solution. We even developed our own research equipment,” recalled Prof. Amano.
Lighting plays an important role in our everyday lives. The development of light-emitting diodes (LEDs) has made more efficient light sources possible. Creating white light that can be used for lighting requires a combination of red, green, and blue light. Blue LEDs proved to be much more difficult to create than red and green diodes. During the 1980s and 1990s Prof. Isamu Akasaki, Prof. Hiroshi Amano, and Prof. Shuji Nakamura successfully used the difficult-to-handle semiconductor gallium nitride to create efficient blue LEDs. According to Prof. Amano by using LED light, Japan reduced its annual electricity consumption by 7 %. Consequently, energy efficient LED lights contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions and global warming. Last year Prof. Amano visited Mongolia. “I was happy to discover that LED lamps are used in the traditional Mongolian Ger tents,” he recalled.
A few years ago, Prof. Amano initiated a network of scientists who works on the “Internet of Energy”, the so-called “Future Wireless Power Transmission Network”, an open innovation platform that develops sustainable, smart solutions regarding future energy challenges of our societies. He spoke about the drone super highway, air-taxis “In future we will be able to connect at any time and any place” he said. Finally he stressed, that students who are interested should contribute with their knowledge and ideas “If you wish to contribute to develop ideas, you should play a leading role” he said.
On the side lines of the talk Prof. Hiroshi Amano spoke about the Nobel Prize Award ceremony and his big surprise when the award was announced in October 2014, while he was travelling between Japan and France to attend a conference there. “I could not understand what had happened,” he said.