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Development and Optimization of Materials Fabrication Processes on the Basis of Pyro- and Hydro-Metallurgy

Reaction Engineering for Materials

The Course of Reaction Engineering for Materials develops and designs reactionary processes relating to the extraction and manufacture of metals and inorganic materials based on physical chemistry. We also offer education and research covering the physics and chemistry of relevant materials and substances.
(Control Material Reaction, Material Purification, High-Temperature Reaction Engineering, Physicality of High-Temperature Liquids)

Most fundamental materials (metal, glass and ceramics) are fabricated by going through a molten state. The processing of molten materials determines the quality of the final product as well as its production cost. Our research group designs the processing of higher functional products with lower energy consumption from the perspective of the physical properties of molten materials. In addition, we measure highly reliable data regarding physicochemical properties of molten metals and oxides (viscosity, density, surface tension, wettability etc.), which provides vital information for the design of materials processes at elevated temperatures.


Wetting behavior of molten
silver on alumina substrate.


Electrochemical AFM in situ
observation images of Zn deposition.
The area marked by yellow shows
newly developed Zn for 30s.


Super rapid in-flight reduction
of fine iron ore by CH4 gas
(White circles indicate the metallic
iron produced within 1 sec.)

We have been studying electrochemistry for materials processing, which is a fundamental technology in the surface modification of metals and in the field of electrolytic metallurgy. The electrodeposition of alloys and oxide-composites from aqueous solutions is of particular interest in our research. Because the deposited alloys form supersaturated solid solutions, nonequilibrium metallic compounds and amorphous alloys that cannot be produced pyrometallurgically, this process is important in the production of materials and functional conversion-coated films. Alloy deposition is also academically important due to the appearance of phenomena that cannot be explained by conventional electrochemistry theory. The investigation of the deposition behavior of alloys and oxide-composites and the analysis of micro-structure and the characteristics of deposits are mainly performed to establish an electrochemical technique for surface modification and materials processing with an advanced theoretical rationality.

In our laboratory, we undertake basic research on the manufacturing processes of steel and carbon related materials, to make the best use of limited resources and to conserve energy, as well as to secure a comfortable living environment. We are currently pursuing two research fields related to the manufacturing processes. One involves achieving increased efficiency and performance in various processes, and the other field focuses on finding a new process for the future. It is necessary to analyze the basic phenomena of the material manufacturing process, as well as the reaction, flow, and heat transfer to achieve success in these research fields. Experiments using a high-temperature furnace as well as simulation analyses via workstations and PC clusters are carried out daily in our quest to further our knowledge in these research fields.

Professor Kazuya Kunitomo
Professor Hiroaki Nakano
Professor Kunihiko Nakashima
Associate Professor Noritaka Saito
Associate Professor Ko-ichiro Ohno
Assistant Professor Takayuki Maeda
Assistant Professor Satoru Ooue
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