Greeting from the President
Reducing weight and improving power engine efficiency are important for improving the fuel efficiency of automobiles and other transportation vehicles. In technical development for vehicle weight reduction, appropriate use of lightweight materials and joining technologies for dissimilar materials are essential, and many technical issues concerning performance evaluation technology for joints, which is necessary for assuring vehicle safety, remain to be solved. Reducing the weight of the structural materials themselves is also extremely important, and lightweight structural materials that are nonflammable and have high strength and high ductility must be developed.
ISMA was established on October 25, 2013 to promote the technologies necessary for developing innovative joining technologies and enhancing the strength of the main structural materials used in transportation vehicles, such as steels, aluminum alloys, titanium alloys, magnesium alloys, carbon fibers, and carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP), in an integrated manner, with the aim of radically reducing the weight of transportation vehicles, and particularly automobiles. ISMA was initially composed of 19 private-sector companies and 1 national institute. In 2014, 17 companies and 1 university involved in the development of CFRP also joined. As of April 1, 2017, the membership of ISMA included 39 companies, 1 national institute and 1 university.
Fortunately, research and development work is proceeding faster than planned. In FY 2017, we are adding the new themes of adhesive technology and neutron analysis, and to further accelerate development, we are introducing measurement techniques and computational science, which have played expanding roles in recent years as research support tools. We are also starting work on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), among other topics.
We will continue our efforts so that the results of ISMA activities contribute to weight reduction and improved fuel efficiency in future transportation systems. In closing, I would like to request the guidance and encouragement of all concerned, beginning with the related government offices.
April 26, 2017