The 2009 Laureates / Advanced Technology Category / Electronics

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Isamu Akasaki

Japan / January 30, 1929
Semiconductor Scientist
University Professor, Nagoya University ; Professor, Meijo University

"Pioneering Work on Gallium Nitride p-n Junctions and Related Contributions to the Development of Blue Light Emitting Devices"
Dr. Akasaki conducted persistent research on gallium nitride (GaN) for many years toward the realization of blue LEDs. His efforts culminated in the pioneering realization of GaN-based p-n junctions, which were once believed to be practically impossible. This achievement served as the first firm step toward the eventual commercialization of blue LEDs. To this day, Dr. Akasaki has consistently played a leading role in a series of significant research endeavors. His contributions to them certainly deserve the highest recognition the world over.

BRIEF BIOGRAPHY

1929
Born in Chiran, Kagoshima, Japan
1952
B. Sc., Kyoto University
1964
D. Eng., Nagoya University
1952-1959
Kobe Kogyo Corporation (currently Fujitsu Ltd.)
1959-1964
Research Associate, Assistant Professor and Associate Professor, Nagoya University
1964-1981
Head of Basic Research Laboratory 4, Matsushita Research Institute Tokyo, Inc.
1981-1992
Professor, Nagoya University
1992-present
Professor Emeritus, Nagoya University
1992-present
Professor, Meijo University
2004-present
University Professor, Nagoya University

SELECTED AWARDS AND HONORS

1995
Heinrich Welker Gold Medal
1997
Medal with Purple Ribbon (Japan)
1998
IOCG Laudise Prize, C&C Prize, IEEE Jack A. Morton Award, Rank Prize
1999
Honoris Causa Doctorate of University of Montpellier
2001
Asahi Prize
Honoris Causa Doctorate of Linkoping University
2002
The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon
JSAP Outstanding Achievement Award, Fujihara Prize
2004
Person of Cultural Merits
Members:
IEEE Fellow, Honorary Member of IEICE, Emeritus Member of JSAP, Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Engineering

SELECTED PUBLICATIONS

1986
Metalorganic vapor phase epitaxial growth of a high quality GaN film using an AlN buffer layer (Amano, H., Sawaki, N., Akasaki, I. and Toyoda, Y.). Applied Physics Letters 48: 353-355.
1989
Effects of AlN Buffer Layer on Crystallographic Structure and on Electrical and Optical Properties of GaN and Ga1-xAlxN (0<x≤0.4) Films Grown on Sapphire Substrate by MOVPE (Akasaki, I., Amano, H., Koide, Y., Hiramatsu, K. and Sawaki, N.). Journal of Crystal Growth 98: 209-219.
1989
P-Type Conduction in Mg-Doped GaN Treated with Low-Energy Electron Beam Irradiation(LEEBI) (Amano, H., Kito, M., Hiramatsu, K. and Akasaki, I.). Japanese Journal of Applied Physics 28: L2112-L2114.
1997
Crystal Growth and Conductivity Control of Group III Nitride Semiconductors and Their Application to Short Wavelength Light Emitters (Akasaki, I. and Amano, H.). Japanese Journal of Applied Physics 36: 5393-5408.
2006
Breakthroughs in Improving Crystal Quality of GaN and Invention of the p-n Junction Blue-Light-Emitting Diode (Akasaki, I. and Amano, H.). Japanese Journal of Applied Physics 45: 9001-9010.
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