Consolidation and enhancement of R&D facilities in the Mizushima Works

March 15, 2016
Asahi Kasei Chemicals Corp.

Asahi Kasei Chemicals has finalized a decision to consolidate and enhance the R&D facilities in its Mizushima Works in Okayama, Japan, including the construction of a new research complex, in order to reinforce the development of new technologies and enrich the research environment.

As the home to laboratories such as the Chemistry & Chemical Process Laboratory and the Catalyst Laboratory, the Mizushima Works has served as a central base for the development of original core technologies including petrochemical processes, catalyst chemistry, and organic/inorganic synthesis, which have been a major driving force for R&D in Asahi Kasei Group. Current research programs extend across fields ranging from the environment and energy to resources and health care, and they continue to grow in scale.

While the company’s R&D facilities in the Mizushima Works are currently separated across different locations in District B and District C, they will be centralized in District C with the construction of a new research complex and the enhancement of existing R&D facilities in District C. This will not only enable the scale of research to be expanded with enhanced infrastructure for research activity for the creation of innovative new technologies, but also prepare for the further expansion of R&D activities in the Material business sector which will begin in April 2016 with the Asahi Kasei Group’s reorganization into an operating holding company configuration, and enhance capabilities to extend into new areas of research.

These measures are expected to result in higher-level combinations of differing technologies by facilitating collaborative research in catalyst, process, and material fields, and greater interaction among researchers in different organizations, for the development and commercialization of technologies that contribute to life and living to people around the world.

Outline of the consolidation and enhancement of R&D facilities

District C within the Mizushima Works of Asahi Kasei Chemicals
Phase 1
Construction of new research complex (6 stories above ground, total floor area 5,900 m2) and adjoining facilities (groundbreaking scheduled for July 2016, start of utilization scheduled for June 2017)
Phase 2
Remodeling and renovation of existing laboratory buildings adjacent to the new research complex (groundbreaking scheduled for July 2017, start of utilization scheduled for June 2018)
Approx. ¥3 billion

Notable laboratories

Chemistry & Chemical Process Laboratory

General Manager
Akira Nakabayashi
Scope of activity
Development of innovative processes to manufacture chemical products and development of organic materials using process chemistry, organic synthesis (polymer design/synthesis), catalyst chemistry, biochemistry, and silicone chemistry

Catalyst Laboratory

General Manager
Takashi Tsunoda
Scope of activity
Development of catalysts and manufacturing technology for petrochemicals and monomers using catalyst technology (inorganic oxides, metals, precious metals) and inorganic synthesis technology