February 2012

February 23, 2012 3:45 PM

Volunteering at the Osaka International Women’s Marathon

During security duty

▲ During security duty

Hello, I’m Fukuda, of SEI Business Creates, Inc.
I serve as a volunteer roadside attendant for the Osaka International Women’s Marathon held every January. I join this activity with over 20 employees from my company, and this year marked our 31st participation.

This year’s race attracted extra attention as a pre-Olympic trial, and some 400 athletes competed in the race through the streets of Osaka City. In chilly weather conditions, we spent six hours providing security, guiding supporters and assisting with traffic control and other activities to ensure trouble-free competition among the athletes.

Sometimes strong winds blew roadside planters or signboards onto the course, and occasionally spectators’ hands almost touched an athlete (which could disqualify the athlete if she were actually touched). As roadside attendants we were required to respond carefully to every situation, and we all did our very best.

Cheering on the runners during security duty is another important role of attendants. The athletes nodded appreciatively as we called to them, “Keep it up!” They all looked very beautiful, striving toward their goal of completing the race.

We have only this one chance per year, through volunteering, to meet some of our fellow company members in person. Every year we part by saying, “Thanks for the great job! Take care, and see you again next year!” I hope I can take part in this activity again next year, as well as the year after next and for many more years to come, so that I can be among those happy faces seeing each other again in good health.

Group photo of all members

▲ Group photo of all members

February 6, 2012 5:45 PM

Inviting High School Students on a Factory Tour

Observing the manufacturing process

▲ Observing the manufacturing process

Hello, everyone. I am Takahashi; I work for the Hard Materials Development Department of Sumitomo Electric Hardmetal Corporation.

On December 22, 2011, we hosted a factory tour for five students and their teacher, Mr. Yahagi, from Osaka Prefectural Sumiyoshi High School.

The school has been designated a Super Science High School (SSH) by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and they have been working on chemical vapor deposition of diamond as an SSH research theme. In April last year, we received an inquiry from Mr. Yoshii, a member of the research team, via our website. As a company manufacturing and selling synthetic diamonds, we were pleased to be able to make a contribution to high school science education. This is how our relationship started.

In addition to exchanging e-mails with them, in September I gave a lecture on diamond synthesis at the high school to assist their research activities. We thought it would be difficult for high school students to synthesize diamond, given their constraints in terms of time and equipment. However, they tackled the challenge aggressively, and succeeded!

Having heard that their SSH project was reaching the final phase, we decided to provide them with an opportunity to observe the production facilities at our plants located on the premises of Sumitomo Electric’s Itami Works. This was an exceptional event; ordinary visitors are normally not allowed to enter the plant. On the occasion of the factory tour, the students in turn gave a presentation on their research results, followed by an active question and answer session. They asked many pertinent questions, which indicates how hard they had worked on their diamond synthesis experiments.

The exchanges with these highly-motivated students who are determined to pursue science reminded us of our own high school days, refreshed our minds and further motivated us to carry on our research and development activities.

We wish them every success in all their future endeavors.

Commemorative photo of all participants

▲ Commemorative photo of all participants

♪ Related Link: Osaka Prefectural Sumiyoshi High School Website (Japanese)

Sumitomo Electric Hardmetal Corporation

Sumitomo Electric Hardmetal Corporation
In April 2003, Sumitomo Electric Hardmetal Corp. was established as a manufacturer specializing in cutting tools. Exercising its agility and adaptability, the Company has since begun to offer unique products and excellent services to customers in Japan and around the world. Its core products include cutting tools, such as the cemented carbide tool “IGETALLOY” and the sintered cubic boron nitride (CBN) tool “SUMIBORON,” and optical parts for laser beam machines. Currently, Sumitomo Electric Hardmetal engages in product development and manufacturing, while the Hardmetal Division of Sumitomo Electric takes charge of product planning and marketing for domestic and overseas markets.

Sumitomo Electric Hardmetal Corporation Website : http://www.sumitool.com/global/