Accession Number:

AD1043326

Title:

Emerging Materials Technology in Japan

Descriptive Note:

Technical Report

Corporate Author:

ARMY LAB COMMAND WATERTOWN MA WATERTOWN United States

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1991-12-01

Pagination or Media Count:

21.0

Abstract:

Remarkable progress has been made in Japan on new materials in processing, characterization, standardization of test methods, design and analysis, and systems applications. In the past four years basic research activity in universities, government laboratories, and industry has accelerated. The production base has continued to grow. A Ministry of International Trade and Industry survey in 1987 estimated that approximately29,000 engineers and scientists were engaged in applications of new materials in product development. Japan has made notable progress in many important materials technologies. Japanese technologists have a strong commitment to develop new materials and have been following through on this commitment since the late 1970s. This is especially so in advanced composites, and particularly in fine ceramics. Japan has a large investment in pilot plants where the market is as yet unproven and currently unprofitable. Their leadership is unquestioned in small-lot production using advanced materials, and their pursuit of thin markets is notorious among competitors. This often gives them early market dominance. For instance, many U.S. firms make ceramics with Japanese powders and composites with Japanese fibers and whiskers. Japanese industry is also investing heavily in new materials. They have the financial support and technical cooperation of the government in planning for the future. Accordingly, there is a coherent and long-term national strategy with well disciplined and strong corporate commitment. In many areas the U.S. and Japan are on par in materials science and basic technology, but Japan is advancing more rapidly into commercial applications and in recent years has emphasized basic research. Therein lies a powerful challenge to the U.S. materials community. Japan has come a long way in materials technology in the past four years and poses a very real threat to U.S. technological leadership.

Subject Categories:

  • Ceramics, Refractories and Glass
  • Laminates and Composite Materials

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE