Visit of iCONM and RIKEN

The delegation members to the 4th Joint Committee Meeting on S&T Cooperation, including representatives and researchers from Swiss universities, Swiss Research Institutes and the State Secretariat of Education, Research and Innovation (SERI), had the opportunity to visit several research institutes during their trip to Japan.

In particular,  they were able to take a look inside the facilities of the Innovation Center of NanoMedicine (iCONM) at KING Skyfront in Kawasaki City, the RIKEN Center for Emerent Matter Science (CEMS) and the RIKEN Nishina Center for Accelerator-Based Science in Wako.

The Science and Technology Office Tokyo, Swiss Embassy in Japan would like to express its gratitude to everybody involved in the organization of these visits.

Kawasaki INnovation Gateway KING Skyfront

KING Skyfront is an inititiative to set up a global innovation hub attracting the world’s leading corporations and laboratories in the areas of health, medicine, welafere and environment. The delegation was kindly received by Mr. Takeshi Suzuki, Head Director of the Coastal Area International Strategy Headquarters of the Kawasaki City Office, and was introduced to the development plan of the Tonomachi area KING Skyfront by Mr. Kentaro Okunuki. The plan is to attract public and private research centers to foster innovation through Industry, Academia and Government collaborations

iCONM Innovation Center of NanoMedicine at KING Skyfront

This brand new research center focuses on in-body hospitals and Smart Health to fight against neurodegenerative diseases and cancer.

Dr. Sabina Quader showing the biology labs to Swiss delegation members at iCONM at KING Skyfront in Kawasaki City.

Prof. Kazunori Kataoka, Director General of iCONM, presented the newest developments in his research on Nanomachines, a special co-polymer that can be injected into the blood to target cancer cells. Dr. Sabina Quader gave a tour of the facilities and showed some of the cutting-edge equipment available to researchers such as the transmission electron microscope, or their in vivo imaging system.




RIKEN is Japan’s largest comprehensive research institute. The Swiss delegation members were greeted by Mr. Masashi Akiba, Director of International Affairs, and given an overview of RIKEN’s one hundred year history and the vision that drives its activities.

RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science

Group picture at RIKEN CEMS

CEMS’ vision is to help build an environment-conscious and sustainable society through fundamental research in strong correlation physics, quantum information electronics and supramolecular chemistry. 

Prof. Kawasaki, Deputy Director of CEMS, gave a brief overview of new breakthroughs in these fields that will help in the development of new technologies, such as ultra-low energy cost electronics and high-efficiency energy collection, transformation and storage. Furthermore, Prof. Kawasaki emphasized the strong ties the CEMS already cultivates with Swiss research Institutions such as the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), ETHZ and EPFL.

RIKEN Nishina Center

Dr. Kamigaito (left) explaining the working principle of the Superconducting Ring Cyclotron to the members of the Swiss delegation

The Nishina Center is already very well known for its discovery of the 113th Element of the Periodic Table to which it gave the name Nihonium and the symbol Nh in 2016. The delegation members were welcomed by Director Hideto En’yo who presented the Center’s efforts to uncover the origins of Mass and the Universe as well as research in particle physics. Dr. Osamu Kamigaito, Director of the Accelerator group, kindly guided the delegation around the research facility, including the K2600-MeV Superconducting Ring Cyclotron.



View over the bay from iCONM looking to Haneda Airport. Kawasaki City is planning to facilitate the access to the airport by building a new bridge thus connecting KING Skyfront to the world.
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