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Facilities and Support

Facilities and Support Unique to the Faculty of Science and Technology

Research centers

The science and engineering research centers are used as an interdisciplinary research base of the Faculty of Science and Technology for promoting research, including interdisciplinary research that transcends the boundaries of humanities and science. The three research centers in operation combine materials, light, biology, clean energy, information, education, and other research areas as part of the university’s efforts to address SDGs and environmental issues, allowing for participation in research as well as use of cutting-edge measurement instruments.
Development of carbon-free
engines using ammonia fuel
With the aim of realizing a carbon-neutral society, we are conducting research and development of automobile engines that do not emit carbon dioxide by using ammonia as fuel. Ammonia, however, is associated with a wide variety of issues, such as difficult ignition, nitrogen oxide emissions, and corrosiveness, and laboratories that specialize in engine engineering, environmental combustion chemistry, and materials science, etc. have come together to work on the issues as interdisciplinary studies.
Research on ammonia combustion emission gas treatment technology
Research on artificial leaves
Clean energy research is essential to resolve next-generation energy issues. We are conducting research on“artificial leaves”that enable photodegradation of water by combining inorganic and organic semiconductors. Thus far, we have confirmed the power generation characteristics of solar cells using organic and inorganic semiconductors. In addition, we are working on the development of artificial leaf cells by incorporating nanowire structures.

Sophisticated material evaluation device
Research center for language,
education, and human data processing
Studies centered on the processing of education, language, and human data based on data science are carried out in order to realize a sustainable human society. We conduct a range of studies from basic science to applied research including the development of fundamental technologies for data processing from the perspectives of international contribution, foreign language education, and human support, which are the characteristics of Sophia University.

A model for generating human speech with a view to language research

Techno Center

The Techno Center is mainly responsible for designing/ fabricating and repairing research/laboratory equipment for Faculty of Science and Technology laboratories, providing guidance in experiments and practical training, and supporting students in designing/drawing courses. As a facility unique to Sophia University, the Techno Center was first established as a“machine factory”at the same time that the Faculty of Science and Technology was founded, but has developed vastly that today, it can not only process machinery but also design new equipment and systems. With its 40-plus pieces of state- of-the-art equipment, including machine tools for numerical control, most of the research/laboratory equipment used in the university can be fabricated independently in-house, enabling the development of cutting-edge research equipment while improving specifications to the satisfaction of students and faculty members who order the fabrication. In addition, technical personnel with a high level of expertise and excellent skills in machining and design technologies extend enthusiastic support to students in terms of education and research.

Mathematics Library

When it comes to mathematics, the Mathematics Library houses a wide array of materials ranging from those in science and engineering and programming to theories on insurance, finance, or management engineering. Not only highly technical books on mathematics but also exercise drills or reading materials for novices are available; it boasts of one of the largest numbers of books as a mathematics library among Japanese private universities. In recent years, it has focused on collecting materials in the electronic format as well. The return date is set according to the period of classes for students at the Faculty of Science and Technology, and students can borrow books for a period of up to six months. Sophiawifi is available inside the library, and students can also study there by themselves.
As of March 31, 2021, the materials housed in the library include approximately 55,000 books (including 7,000 Japanese books), more than 100 magazine titles (including electronic journals and six Japanese titles) to which the library subscribes continuously, and approximately 20,000 bound magazines (including 500 Japanese ones). Those materials can be searched on- and off-campus using the OPAC system.

Support from chemistry technical staff

In the field of chemistry, a wide array of analytical instruments is available for students to investigate various properties of materials. All instruments are managed by the technical staff who have specialized knowledge and respond to students’requests for measurement and advice thereon. This system enables students to work with the technical staff when they try to perform high-level analysis. Because it is frequented by many students, the analytical room always generates a lively atmosphere.
Lectures on measurement
Lectures are given to students engaged in research so that they can operate analytical instruments by themselves. Each lecture is attended by many students who aim to obtain licenses for measurement.
Measurement support
Students actually use analytical instruments to analyze materials they synthesize for the first time. Knowing whether the synthesis is successful or not is an exciting moment. Students examine the results of analysis, and the technical staff give advice on how to proceed with the next measurement and other matters.
Management of analytical instruments
Analytical instruments are inspected daily to ensure safe and accurate measurement.

Support for Women Researchers

The“Office for the Promotion of Gender Equality”inaugurated in January 2012 was renamed the“Office for the Promotion of Diversity (OPD)”in April 2017. The OPD provides support to women researchers who can play a role globally along with the FST. Support primarily includes presenting an“encouragement award”and organizing symposiums and lectures.

The Women Researchers Global Encouragement Award

This award was established in 2012 upon the completion of the women researchers support model development project with the aim of extending support to female students in the FST who show promise on the global stage. In FY2021, four female students were chosen to receive the award, which includes partial support for research expenses. The photograph on the right shows the four recipients of the award in FY2021, taken alongside the president of the university and their academic advisors.

The Global Mentor System

Sophia University has established a global network with partner universities with which it has entered into student or academic exchange agreements. Not only students but also researchers actively promote international exchanges. Such activities are supported by the global mentor system in which researchers active on the global stage act as mentors and provide advice or academic guidance through individual consultations, lectures, or exchange meetings. Ms. Hui Chung Ting Justine (then third-year student of the Doctoral Program in the Green Science and Engineering Division, Graduate School of Science and Technology) earned her degree after receiving guidance from her global mentor, Professor Chin-Tuan Tan, of The University of Texas, on September 20, 2019.