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Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Prof. Kazuhisa Kakurai from Japan

Award Ceremony at Forschungszentrum Jülich

04 September 2015


The Japanese physicist Prof. Kazuhisa Kakurai of the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) has been presented with the Helmholtz International Fellow Award in acknowledgement of his excellent research work. Prof. Sebastian M. Schmidt, member of the Board of Directors at Forschungszentrum Jülich and Prof. Thomas Brückel, Director at the Jülich Centre for Neutron Science (JCNS) and the Peter Grünberg Institute awarded him the distinction on 4 September.

The Helmholtz International Fellow Award recognizes exceptional achievements in science and research management and consolidates existing collaborations between Helmholtz centres and scientific facilities abroad. Fellows receive prize money of € 20,000 and are invited to spend time undertaking research at Helmholtz facilities.

Kazuhisa Kakurai had in fact already been granted the prize last January. In August, he began his research stay at JCNS, beginning with the outstation in Garching near Munich. Now both Sebastian Schmidt and Thomas Brückel have officially welcomed him to Jülich and presented him with the certificate to accompany his award.

Kakurai-HelmholtzHelmholtz International Fellow Prof. Kazuhisa Kakurai, Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA), Japan, is presented with his certificate by Prof. Sebastian M. Schmidt, member of the Board of Directors at Forschungszentrum Jülich.
Copyright: Forschungszentrum Jülich


During his speech, Schmidt acknowledged Kazuhisa Kakurai as a renowned expert in neutron research, especially in the application of polarized neutrons used, for example, to aid in the understanding of quantum magnetism. Furthermore, he has wide-ranging experience as a science manager which will be a great asset in his future collaboration with JCNS.

At its outstation in Garching near Munich, JCNS operates some unique neutron scattering instruments under the umbrella of the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Centre that Kakurai would like to use in his investigations of magnetic systems with complex structures and of chiral magnetic systems. The latter are magnetic systems which, a little like our right and left hand, are made of the same components but with different “handedness” and thus possess different properties.

As a physicist, it is particularly interesting for Kakurai that JCNS has specialist knowledge in the development of filters for polarized neutrons. For continuous neutron sources, such as the one in Garching, so-called He3 filters are used only for certain types of measurements; for pulsed neutron sources such as the ones in Japan, they are indispensable. On a personal level, there has been a long history of exchange between Japanese and German neutron scattering research, explains Kakurai. He is keen to continue his support of this productive collaboration work.

Kazuhisa Kakurai is originally from Tokyo, Japan, but has lived and worked many years in Germany. He studied physics at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, and earned his doctorate in 1984 in the field of neutron scattering at the Technische Universität Berlin. In 1988, after a total of 25 years in Germany, he returned to work at Tohoku University in Japan. In 2005, he was initially appointed Group Leader of the Polarized Neutron Magnetism Group of the JAEA und later headed the Quantum Beam Science Directorate of the JAEA. The JAEA conducts basic and applied research with neutrons, ions, electrons, positrons and photons. In 2014, Kakurai became a Senior Consultant, which allows him more freedom to take full advantage of accolades such as the Helmholtz International Fellow Award and all the new research opportunities it offers him.

Further information:

Jülich Centre for Neutron Science

Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Zentrum

Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA)


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