Former Nagoya University Professor Isamu Akasaki, who is both a Distinguished Professor and Emeritus Professor at Nagoya University as well as a Professor at Meijo University, and current Nagoya University Graduate School of Engineering Professor Hiroshi Amano, have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics "for the invention of efficient blue light-emitting diodes which has enabled bright and energy-saving white light sources."
The two professors had been working to develop blue light-emitting diodes (LED), and in 1985 successfully produced a clear, colorless crystal, which is one of the materials for LEDs. Then in 1989, they succeeded in developing the world's first high-luminance blue LED, which is currently used for a wide range of devices, such as cell phone backlights, large screen displays, and energy-efficient traffic lights and household illumination lamps, and also makes possible the high-density recording and high-speed processing of information.
Distinguished Professor Isamu Akasaki became a Research Associate in the Nagoya University School of Engineering in 1959 and, after serving consecutively as an Assistant Professor at the same institution in 1964, received a PhD in Engineering from the Nagoya University Graduate School of Engineering in the same year. Following this he worked in the private sector, and in 1981 was appointed as a Professor in the Nagoya University School of Engineering. In 1992 he was appointed as a Professor in the Meijo University School of Science and Engineering, and in December 2004 became a Distinguished Professor at Nagoya University.
Graduate School of Engineering Professor Hiroshi Amano graduated from the Nagoya University School of Engineering in 1983 and, after completing his Doctoral Course at the Graduate School of Engineering in 1988, became a Research Associate at Nagoya University and an Assistant Professor and Professor at Meijo University. Since 2010 he has been a Professor in the Nagoya University Graduate School of Engineering.
Comment from the President of Nagoya University
I would like to offer my most sincere congratulations on this occasion to Distinguished Professor Isamu Akasaki of Nagoya University and to Professor Hiroshi Amano of our Graduate School of Engineering, for the great achievement of receiving the Nobel Prize in Physics.
Both professors worked on this research together, while Distinguished Professor Akasaki was a professor in the School of Engineering and Professor Amano was an undergraduate student. They realized the high-efficiency GaN-based p-n Junction Blue-Light-Emitting Device (blue-light-emitting diode), which at that time in the twentieth century was thought to be impossible and which led to a revolution in semiconductor research. We are deeply happy and honored to have had Distinguished Professor Akasaki and Professor Amano conduct such highly-valued research during their time as members of Nagoya University.
The research of both professors is currently used for many things that have become indispensable in our daily lives: backlights for cell phones, large-scale monitors and displays, light sources for plant cultivation, low-energy high-efficiency traffic lights, and for making possible the high-density recording and high-speed processing of information. We are still seeing the field of its usefulness widen, and expect it to develop even further.
I truly believe that the winning of this Nobel Prize will provide great stimulation to Nagoya University's research and education activities, and at the same time propel Japan's academic research to an even higher level.
October 7, 2014
Michinari HAMAGUCHI, President of Nagoya University