The rainy season in Japan usually ends in early July, however severe and abnormal weather plagued Japan during July this year. First a strong typhoon soaked the western island, Kyushu; its path crossing from south to north. The typhoon kicked off the seasonal rain front in the west half of Japan resulting in historical rainfall. Several towns received more than one thousand millimeters of rain in less than four days – this was a record amount of rainfall for many towns. The downpours caused floods and landslides near river banks, destroying bridges and washing out roadways. More than 250 people were killed or remain missing, and five thousand families lost their homes. Water and power supply as well as railway travel sustained critical damage, and many remain in the dark without water. More than five thousand people are relying on evacuation shelters.
Why did this year’s damage seem worse than past years? The Japanese Meteorological Agency of Japan did a great job forecasting the historically severe rainfall days before using the highest class super computer. The super computer expected more rain falls than previous records. They issued repeated warning for those in direct danger, but did not have the power to issue mandatory evacuations for these areas. All they can do is communicate the weather forecast. The responsibility to protect individuals in the line of fire falls on the shoulders of the police and fire departments, and ultimately the cabinet and Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport of Japan.
A few years ago, there was a land slide after a severe rain fall in Hiroshima Prefecture. Several ten people were killed. This disaster should have taught us to develop a preventable action plan and early warning system to avoid loss of human life. Current day technology can capture this data in on time. It’s time to use this data and develop a meaningful action plan where there is clear and present danger.
Several cabinet members including the prime minister were attending a private party with the congressmen from the ruling party while the Meteorological Agency released the warning of a severe rain fall (sounds like someone was asleep at the wheel). We may need a barometer to measure the effectiveness of our politicians.
Dominique K. Numakura, firstname.lastname@example.org
DKN Research, www.dknresearch.com
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Headlines of the week
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- NEC (Major electronics company in Japan) 6/29
Has developed a new compression type cooling system for servers of the data centers. It will reduce power consumption 20%
- Rengo (Major packaging material supplier in Japan) 7/2
Has developed a cellulose base nano-fiber “XCNF” as the frame material automobiles. It has higher mechanical strength with smaller weight compared to steels.
- Tokyo University (Japan) 7/3
Has co-developed a new optical devices forming spiral flower structure with silicon with Konica Minolta.
- Showa Denko (Major chemical company in Japan) 7/3
Has decided to expand the monthly manufacturing capacity of high quality grade SiC wafer from 5000 wafers to 9000 wafers for power electronics demands.
- Fujitsu (Major electronics company in Japan) 7/5
Has agreed to sell semiconductor manufacturing plant in Mie Prefecture with UMC, Taiwan by 57.6 billion yens.
- Shimadzu (Major scientific equipment manufacturer in Japan) 7/6
Has developed a new LIBS (Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy) for the chemical analysis of trace amount metallic elements in the waste water of the semiconductor plants.
- Seiko Epson (Major electronics company in Japan) 7/9
Has built a new manufacturing factory of the ink jet printer heads at Hirooka Plant, Nagano. The manufacturing capacity will be three times larger.
- NIMS (Major R&D organization in Japan) 7/10
Has co-developed a new synthesize process of carbon nano sheet in aqueous solution. The thickness of the sheet is less than ten nanometers.
- Kyushu University (Japan) 7/10
Has developed a new type of OLED device with a higher conversion rates than 100% between singlet state and triplet state.
- Daicel (Major supplier of specialty chemicals in Japan) 7/10
Will build a new manufacturing facility of the nano-silver ink for the printable electronics. The new ink provides a higher conductivity by low temperature baking.
- Canon (Major electronics company in Japan) 7/10
Will release a new high resolution CMOS sensor “120MXSM” with 120 million pixels for the process inspection of the next generation display panels in July.
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