Business

Research & Development

R&D Strategy

Within the selection and concentration that we perform in our core businesses of mineral resources, smelting and refining, and materials, we carry out priority allocation of research and development costs, and position smelting and refining process technology, powder synthesis and surface treatment technology, crystal growth and processing technology, and exploration, mining, and mineral processing technologies as core technologies.
We also consider analysis technology, computer aided engineering and analysis technology and information and communications technology (ICT) as fundamental technologies, and are carrying out focused development on clearly defined technology domains. Specifically, we are undertaking mineral resource development and further process/technology development in the field of non-ferrous metals smelting and refining, and, in the materials field, are focusing on materials and new technology development in the environment/energy fields and the information and communications fields, where great societal need exists. We perform research and development after clearly defining the scale of our sales targets for new products, an approach that is generating results. We are also undertaking basic research on powder materials in order to acquire new technologies in this area with an eye toward the future.

Strengthening of new product development capabilities

Sustainable growth of our business requires the strengthening of our new product development capabilities. Particularly in the Materials business field, where short product life cycles prevail, we must continuously bring compelling new products to the market.
We carefully watch market and technology trends, draft research and development strategies from a long-term perspective that takes product life cycles and the emergence of innovative technologies into account, and engage in selection and concentration of research and development themes. We will focus our efforts on not only the development themes that lie before us but also on basic research in the powder materials field.

Research and development by the SMM Group

The development of mineral resources and metal processes has interrelated technologies in the form of smelting and refining process technology and exploration, mining, and mineral processing technology, while material development has powder synthesis and surface treatment technology and crystal growth and processing technology. Technologies that apply to both the development of mineral resources and metal processes and materials development are analysis technology, computer aided engineering and analysis technology, and information and communication technology (ICT). Basic research includes powder material basic research, and this is linked to powder synthesis and surface treatment technology in material development.

Core technology

Basic research

Fundamental technology

R&D System

The Technology Div., which is the SMM Group’s R&D organization, has four departments, three laboratories, and a research center. The departments support the activities of the research center and laboratories making R&D activities for new products and technologies more efficient.

In the Technology Division are the Niihama Research Laboratories, Battery Research Laboratories, Materials Laboratories, the Ichikawa Research Center, the Computer Aided Engineering and Development Department, the Intellectual Properties Department, the Analysis Technology Department, and the Planning & Administration Department.

Core Facilities

Contact

Planning & Administration Dept., Technology Div.

Phone: 81-3-3436-7991 
Facsimile: 81-3-3436-7739

E-mail: Tech_Div@ni.smm.co.jp