Academic Session

Sustainable Development of Regions; SDGs and beyond

Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati (IITG), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) and Gifu University launched a series of International Joint Degree Programs in 2019, which covered a wide range of topics in science and technologies in Engineering and Applied Biology. All programs focus on contributing to regional development, which can be achieved by international collaboration among the three institutions keeping in min.d various regional stakeholders, including industrial sectors. Our scenario for regional development mainly focuses on the realization of sustainable systems through innovative ideas and technologies through institutionally supported inter- and intra-regional activities. In this webinar, we will exchange our ideas, which will eventually contribute to acceleration of our concept of regional development, including sharing of current designs for each region, disaster prevention for its development, and practices of green and smart technologies by regional industries utilizing biomass.

  • DAY 1
  • DAY 2
  • Opening Remarks

    Dr. Hiroyuki Koyama(Executive Director of GU-GLOCAL)

  • Future prospects of food production and supply

    Chair: Dr. Shiro Suzuki (Associate Professor, Faculty of Applied Biological Sciences / Glocalization Promotion Division, GU-GLOCAL)

  • Plant proteins for our future foods(40 min.)

    Dr. Nobuyuki Maruyama(Professor, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University)


    "Protein crisis," the anticipated shortage of food protein, has been identified as a key issue in the food supply. Cultured meats, meat substitutes, and insect diets have been identified as possible solutions. The global population continues to grow and is expected to peak at around 10.4 billion in the future. Further attempts are needed to secure food protein for the future. In other countries, "protein transitions" have been advocated through the development of innovative "alternative" protein foods and raw materials that will bring about dietary changes. This presentation will outline the structure and properties of plant proteins such as soybeans, which are being used as a source of "meat alternatives" as the basis for such efforts, and compare them to those of meat from livestock and insect proteins. In addition, technologies such as genetic modification and genome editing will be needed to expand the use of plant proteins in the future. Attempts to modify the functional and other properties of plant proteins using these technologies, as well as attempts to reduce allergic properties, which is an issue with these technologies, will also be discussed.

  • Freshness Sensing Technology for Postharvest Loss Reduction in Agri-food Chain(40 min.)

    Dr. Kohei Nakano (Professor, The United Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Gifu University) 


    More than 40% of fruits and vegetables produced in the world are discarded without ever reaching the table. As the world's population continues to grow, it is crucial to eliminate this food loss to ensure a stable food supply in the future. One effective way to achieve this is to develop a Smart Distribution system, which optimizes the entire process from production to consumption by coordinating information. Smart Distribution eliminates wastefulness and unreasonableness and creates new value for food. Especially in the Smart Distribution of vegetables and fruits, "freshness" is essential information, but it is an ambiguous indicator that has not been scientifically defined. In this talk, the research currently engaged in understanding, measuring, and manipulating the freshness of fruits and vegetables will be introduced, and we look forward to the future of fruit and vegetable distribution that links farm to table.

  • Student Organized Lectures

    Chair: Dr. Jha Himanshu Shekhar(Assistant Professor, Faculty of Engineering, Gifu University)

  • Synthesis of Alcoholic Biofuels from Waste Invasive Weeds(40 min.)

    Dr. V.S. Moholkar (Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati)


    Waste invasive weeds with no economic importance and negligible food/fodder value. An example is of Parthenium hysterophorus which is among the world’s seven most devastating weeds. P. hysterophorus has a cellulose content of 45.2 ± 1.81%, w/w). This waste could be a potential feedstock as source of bioenergy, namely bioethanol. In this study, P. hysterophorus was processed for pretreatment, hydrolysis, etc intensified by sonication for an enhanced yield of ethanol. Autoclaving-assisted dilute acid treatment followed by ultrasound-assisted alkaline delignification were the optimum pretreatment/delignification strategies for P. hysterophorus biomass. Carboxymethylcellulase (1.0 U/mg, 1.7 mg/mL) produced by an isolate Bacillus amyloliquefaciens SS35 and β-glucosidase (Novozyme 188), were used for enzymatic hydrolysis of pretreated/delignified biomass. The hydrolysate was further fermented to ethanol by employing a yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae MTCC170. The bioethanol production process was carried out in both separate hydrolysis and fermentation (SHF) and simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) modes. Sonication at 35 kHz and 10% duty cycle was used for hydrolysis and fermentation processes. Kinetic analysis of delignification has revealed 2-fold enhancement with ultrasound as compared to mechanically agitated treatment. The kinetics of ultrasound-assisted enzymatic hydrolysis showed a 6-fold enhancement in the hydrolysis rate. In SHF, the control experiment resulted to an ethanol titer of 10.93 g/L (0.15 g/g raw biomass) after 18 h of fermentation. The time of fermentation was reduced to 10 h in ultrasound-assisted process and resulted to an ethanol concentration of 12.14 g/L (0.17 g/g raw biomass) (Singh et al. 2015b). In case of ultrasoundassisted SSF experiments, the results of control experiment revealed that the maximum ethanol production was achieved at 54th h of fermentation with an ethanol titer of 10.57 g/L (0.14 g/g raw biomass). However, test experiment resulted in ethanol titer of 15.62 g/L (0.21 g/g raw biomass) after 18.3 h. The total yield of ethanol from the fermentation of the pentose and hexose hydrolysates was approx. 200 g per kg of raw biomass, which is at par with the yields from molasses fermentation.

  • Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster Mitigation and Prevention: New Innovations and Challenges Ahead(40 min.)

    Dr. Babloo Chaudhary (Assistant Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, National Institute of Technology Surathkal, Karnataka, India)


    In order to protect the coastal areas from tsunamis, new techniques have been developed for making the breakwater resilient against tsunami, which can barricade the tsunami in the sea. Gabions, sheet piles, geogrids, geobags are used as countermeasure element to develop a resilient breakwater. Prformance of the developed reinforcing techniques was evaluated by conducting a series physical model tests and numerical simulations. As a part of physical model tests, shaking table tests, centrifuge model tests and tsunami overflow tests were performed on the scaled models of Japanese and Indian breakwaters. The earthquake loadings were provided in the form of foreshocks and main shock. After the earthquake, tsunami overflow tests were performed. During the tests, accelerometers, pore water pressure transducers and laser displacement gauges were used to measure acceleration, pore water pressure, settlement and horizontal displacement of the model respectively. The effectiveness of the reinforced breakwater is determined by comparing its performances with those of the conventional breakwaters. The comparison is done in terms of reduction in (i) settlement and horizontal displacement of the breakwater, (ii) excess pore water pressures in the foundation and (iii) acceleration. Numerical analyses were also done by FLAC and PLAXIS in order to understand the mechanism. It was observed during the tests that the reinforced breakwater performed very well in reducing the damage of the breakwater caused by the earthquake and tsunami. And finally, the developed breakwater models showed high resiliency against the earthquake and tsunami. Overall, the study can be useful to develop countermeasures for a breakwater on the real ground in order to reduce damage brought by tsunami in the future. Details of the study are explained by Chaudhary et. al (2019, 2018a-c, 2017).

  • Disaster mitigation for sustainable development

    Chair: Dr. Koji Kinoshita(Associate Professor, Faculty of Engineering/ Glocalization Promotion Division, GU-GLOCAL)

  • Countermeasures against rock falls utilizing topographical data(40 min.)

    Dr. Kazuhide Sawada (Professor, Director of Center for Infrastructure Asset Management Technology and Research, Gifu University)


    We have a lot of disasters due to rock falls in Japan. Because of variate topographic and geological situation, it is difficult to choose an appropriate measure from various kinds of option. Furthermore, the cost of maintenance for these measure facilities are gradually gaining.
    In this background, a reasonable idea of measure for rock fall is required. In this occasion, two ideas are introduced.

  • Landslide disaster mitigation and slope protection measures (40 min.)

    Dr. Arindam Dey (Associate Professor, Center for Disaster Management and Research, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati)


    With more and more infuriating climatic conditions emerging over time, the hilly terrains are frequently exposed to cloudbursts, GLOFs, intense rainfall and precipitation. Further, if the region is seismicity prone, the strong ground motions travelling through the hillslope material lead to characteristic weakening of strength. With these triggering factors, accompanied by anthropogenic interventions, landslides have culminated to a force need to be dealt with. The domain of landslides includes earthslides, rockfalls, avalanches and debris flows. Firstly, a briefing about the types and causes of landslides through various pictorial and videographic demonstrations. Thereafter, this presentation would focus on the application of various retention measures and mitigation techniques that act as either a preventive measure or a measure for disaster reduction. Accompanied by case studies, this presentation would also illustrate an overview of the conventional and non-conventional mitigation strategies that can be adopted depending upon the scale of impending landslides.

  • Sustainable development technologies in energy and environment

    Chair: Dr. Nobusuke Kobayashi (Professor, Faculty of Engineering / Glocalization Promotion Division, GU-GLOCAL)

  • High temperature latent heat storage technology for Carnot Batteries(40 min.)

    Dr. Takahiro Nomura(Associate Professor, Center for Advanced Research of Energy and Material, Hokkaido University)


    To increase the heat storage capacity and enhance the power to power efficiency of Carnot Batteries, high temperature thermal energy storage (TES) technology is one of the key technologies. Latent heat storage which based on latent heat of solid – liquid phase transition of a phase change material (PCM) is a promising high-temperature TES from viewpoint of high heat storage density and heat-supply at constant temperature. Our research group have been developing high temperature latent heat storage technology using Al based alloys as PCMs which operating temperature are about 300-800°C. Especially, we develop microencapsulated PCMs (MEPCMs); the core is Al based alloys with about 20-40 µm diameter and the shell is Al2O3 with complete chemical and mechanical stability. This presentation will mainly introduce the recent advance of the MEPCM based high-temperature latent heat storage technology and its application to Carnot Batteries.

  • Lipid extraction technology from microalgae without pretreatment of drying using new environmentally friendly solvent(40 min.)

    Dr. Hideki Kanda(Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Engineering, Nagoya University)


    Microalgae, with their excellent ability to synthesize lipids and functional substances, have an extremely high CO2 fixation capacity. Therefore, microalgae are an important renewable resource for achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. Already, enormous amounts of microalgae are being sold as functional foods. However, the water content of microalgae is extremely high, making it difficult to use and preserve as is, so drying is necessary. Nevertheless, sun-drying causes sanitary problems due to weathering and decomposition. On the other hand, hot air drying emits enormous amounts of CO2 or consumes green electricity. Conventional solvents for extracting lipids and functional substances also have problems of toxicity, price, and azeotropy with water. In other words, using microalgae as renewable resources has problems in terms of CO2 balance, energy balance, and solvent toxicity. Our research group is studying a method that makes drying and solvent extraction feasible by employing dimethyl ether as a new green solvent for extracting water, lipids, and other substances, using solar hot water at approximately 60°C as an energy source. This project has been supported by public funds from JST and ERCA, Japanese government agencies, and this presentation will introduce their efforts.

  • Closing Remarks

    Dr. Akio Ebihara (Associate Director of GU-GLOCAL / Division Head, Glocalization Promotion Division, GU-GLOCAL)