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The 17th Annual Kisoi Motohiro Award for young researchers in the field of rescue engineering


The International Rescue System Institute (President Satoshi Tadokoro) hosted the 17th Annual Kisoi Motohiro Award ceremony online on the 14th and posted the live video on their website ( The Kisoi Motohiro Award's Academic Achievement Award was presented to Kei Hiroi (Associate Professor, Kyoto University Disaster Prevention Research Institute), and the Technical Achievement Award was presented to Toshinori Kagawa (Senior Researcher, Central Research Institute of Electric Power Industry). The Kisoi Motohiro Award aims to encourage young researchers and engineers in the field of rescue engineering. Award-winning lectures are also conducted at the award ceremony.

The research theme Associate Professor Hiroi was awarded for is, "Research and development of the disaster mitigation open platform ARIA for the advancement of disaster prevention ICT." Until now, it has been common for systems handling disaster information to include all functions in one system, and developing, introducing, and adding functions has incurred a considerably high cost. To this end, Associate Professor Hiroi has developed a collaborative platform that exchanges and synchronizes data between each element of multiple disaster prevention technologies and systems and implements them in a coordinated manner using simulation emulation technology. This enables existing system functions to be flexibly replaced. It has become possible to flexibly distribute machine resources according to expansion and processing.

Kei Hiroi

Senior Researcher Kagawa was awarded for his research theme, "Research and development of a multi-hop wireless system that expands the communication range of disaster response robots". Wireless communication is essential for the remote control and remote monitoring of disaster response robots; however, wireless communication may be cut off or its quality may deteriorate as the robot moves. Senior Researcher Kagawa proposed a multi-hop communication technology using multiple frequencies and verified its usefulness in a demonstration experiment assuming a large-scale disaster. The system uses two frequency bands of 920 MHz (for main communication) and 169 MHz (for backup communication); by switching the frequency according to the radio wave propagation environment around the robot, it is possible to prevent interruptions in communication with the robot.

Toshinori Kagawa

For the Kisoi Motohiro Award's Encouragement Awards, the Robocup Junior IRS Award was presented to Koyo High School for "Little Gigant", the Rescue Robot Contest Encouragement Award was presented to Tokushima University for their Robocon Project--"Tokufight!", and the Rescue Engineering Encouragement Award was presented to Takuro Takanashi (Graduate Student, University of Electro-Communications).

Winners of the IEEE IROS Best Paper Award on Safety, Security, and Rescue Robotics in Memory of Motohiro Kisoi announced at IROS2021 held online last year will be commended at the award ceremony. ""Alternating Drive-and-Glide Flight Navigation of a Kiteplane for Sound Source Position Optimization" was selected as the award-winning paper. The authors are Makoto Kumon (Professor, Kumamoto University Faculty of Advanced Science and Technology Advanced Technology Program), Hiroshi Okuno (Invited Researcher, Waseda University Future Robotics Organization), and Yuichi Tajima (Master's Student, Kumamoto University Graduate School of Science and Technology). The Kisoi Motohiro Award is named after the eponymous individual who died in the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995. He was in the middle of pursuing his dream in the field of robotics and was enrolled in the master's program at Kobe University Graduate School at that time. The award aims to prevent the lessons learned from the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995 from fading away.

Makoto Kumon (left) and Hiroshi Okuno (right)

This article has been translated by JST with permission from The Science News Ltd.( Unauthorized reproduction of the article and photographs is prohibited.

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