Komori Corporation and Yamagata University conclude comprehensive collaboration agreement - Promoting innovation in next-generation printed electronics -

May 21, 2024


Komori Corporation (Sumida-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President and CEO Satoshi Mochida) is pleased to announce the conclusion of a comprehensive collaboration agreement with Yamagata University, a national university corporation.

Yamagata University opened the Innovation Center for Organic Electronics in 2013 as an international research and development base for printed electronics and has been developing open innovation for more than 10 years. Komori is a printing machinery and systems manufacturer founded in 1923 that sees printed electronics as a growth business. It opened the Printed Electronics Elemental Technology Development Center in 2023 and promotes open innovation. In the future, we plan to promote innovation in next-generation printed electronics by leveraging Yamagata University's strength in materials technology and Komori's strength in print technology.

Achievements and background of collaboration

Yamagata University and Komori have collaborated on research and development of organic EL electrode printing, conductive wiring printing in flexible hybrid electronics (FHE), and three-dimensional curved (3D) electronics. Now, we will expand our range from basic academics to commercialization, human resource development, exchange and utilization of facility equipment, and comprehensively collaborate on new fields.

Future development and progress

We will jointly research and develop thin film coating technology in addition to fine wiring technology as a new technological field. Specifically, we will develop printing materials for next-generation solar cells and next-generation secondary batteries (Yamagata University) and develop printing equipment (Komori). We will develop printing processes and produce prototypes (jointly). We will promote comprehensive collaboration with Yamagata University's Innovation Center for Organic Electronics (INOEL, Yonezawa City) and Komori's Printed Electronics Elemental Technology Development Center (PEDEC, Tsukuba City) as our respective central bases.


An example of a recent joint prototype sample in next-generation printed electronics. A lattice pattern is printed on a flat film using conductive paste (optimized by Yamagata University) (printing conditions are optimized using screen printing equipment manufactured by Seria Corporation (a subsidiary of Komori). After curing with an infrared heating device (processing conditions optimized with cooperation by Seria), it is formed into a cylindrical three-dimensional shape (equipment owned by Yamagata University). We have successfully developed a prototype in which the conductive wiring does not break even when it is extended to a large curved shape. It is expected to be used in automobile applications in the future.

About National University Corporation Yamagata University

Yamagata University is one of the largest comprehensive national universities in eastern Japan, with approximately 9,000 students studying in six faculties and six graduate schools: the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, the Faculty of Regional Education and Culture, the Faculty of Science, the Faculty of Medicine, the Faculty of Engineering, and the Faculty of Agriculture. Starting with the opening of Yamagata Prefectural Normal School in 1878 (Meiji 11), it was established in 1949 (Showa 24) as a new system national university with five educational institutions as the parent organization (Yamagata High School, Yamagata Normal School, Yamagata Youth Normal School, Yonezawa Technical College, and Yamagata Prefectural College of Agriculture and Forestry). In 2024 (Reiwa 6), the university celebrated its 75th anniversary. It has inherited history and tradition and is dispatching many outstanding human resources to society.

Yamagata University has four campuses in three areas: Yamagata City, Yonezawa City, and Tsuruoka City. Among these, the Yonezawa Campus, the home of the Faculty of Engineering, is located in Yonezawa City, a castle town connected to the Date-Uesugi clan at the foot of the Azuma Mountain Range, which forms the source of the Mogami River. Currently, it is a research base for organic materials comprising the Innovation Center for Organic Electronics, the Organic Electronics Research Center, the Organic Materials System Frontier Center, and the Green Materials Forming and Processing Research Center, and is in particular an international research base for printed electronics.


Explanation of terms

Printed electronics:

Currently, copper wiring on the boards of electrical and electronic components is created by covering the entire surface of the board with copper foil and then using a large amount of chemicals to remove the parts other than the wiring to form thin electronic circuit wiring. This requires energy and generates a large amount of waste liquid. To solve this problem, printed electronics is a technology that creates electronic circuits by printing with ink that conducts electricity, just as printers use ink to print text and photographs. Because it is energy saving, does not discharge waste liquid, is environmentally friendly, and makes a significant contribution to SDGs, it is expected to be used more widely.

Next-generation printed electronics:

Conventional printed electronics simply printed wiring circuits on a flat surface using conductive ink. New developments such as printing on a flat surface and then processing it into a curved surface (creating a three-dimensional shape), printing with uneven surfaces, and coating the entire surface with a thin film are next-generation printed electronics.

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The signing ceremony was held in the Innovation Center for Organic Electronics (INOEL) at Yamagata University.


For further information

Tatsuhiro Takahashi
Deputy Director, Open Innovation Promotion Headquarters, National University Corporation Yamagata University
Telephone: 0238-26-3585 
Email: effort@yz.yamagata-u.ac.jp

Takashi Fujimoto
Komori Corporation Co., Ltd.
Executive Officer, General Manager of PE Business Headquarters
Telephone: 03-5608-7811
Email: Takashi_Fujimoto@komori.co.jp