ISUZU ADVANCED ENGINEERING CENTER, LTD.

A Bright Tomorrow Awaits Those Who Strive for the Best

What kind of functionality could we apply to automobiles to bring about revolutionary changes in transport?What can we do to contribute to a more prosperous society?We here at Isuzu Advanced Engineering Center, LTD. (IAEC) are constantly taking on such R&D challenges while always looking towards the future.

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ABOUT US

  • What is IAEC? A Think Tank at Isuzu That Analyzes the Future
    The role of IAEC is to research future technology for use on vehicles developed by Isuzu Motors. In other words, our task is to take the initiative in product development by proposing new technology and laying the groundwork for its realization. The development of commercial vehicle technology is key to the logistics industry and a great deal has come to be expected of its benefits for the transport and shipping industries, as well as regarding its role in societal development and environmental conservation.
    Here at IAEC, we are committed to achieving the ideal automobile for an ideal future by forming organic relationships with engineers and researchers from R&D and educational institutions around the globe.
  • Three Main R&D Themes
    At IAEC, R&D activities focusing on engines, vehicles, and energy are all performed with our shared "Three Main R&D Themes" in mind.
  • The Pursuit of Safety
    We work to heighten the safety of Isuzu vehicles by making improvements in all aspects of safety, including that of drivers, cargo, pedestrians, as well as the drivers of other vehicles.
    Improvement of Economic Efficiency
    While always pursuing the next level in fuel efficiency, we strive to assist the transport industry and in turn contribute to society by providing technology that brings about all-around reductions in cost.
    Harmony with the Environment
    Creating a balance between environments both natural and urban and the diesel engines that power commercial vehicles is an endeavor being undertaken on a global scale through the development of ever cleaner diesel technology.
  • A Research Environment that Fosters Creativity
    Each theme is researched by teams headed by "Theme Leaders" and consist of various researchers and technicians working in collaboration.
    The mutual stimulation created by combining the knowledge and know-how of skilled veterans with the fresh ideas of younger researchers allows IAEC to serve as a facility where innovative technology is born.

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INTERVIEW

Employee Interviews
Here are interviews with some of the staff at IAEC detailing the work they undertake in their various research departments.
  1. INTERVIEW 1
    Energy Research
    Taking Control of Energy
    Staff Research Engineer
    Makoto Ogawa
  2. INTERVIEW 2
    Engine Research
    Striving for Improvements in Fuel Economy
    Senior Research Engineer
    Keita Arato
  3. INTERVIEW 3
    Engineering
    Turning Plans into Reality
    Mechanic
    Kenji Kikushima
  4. INTERVIEW 4
    Vehicle Research
    Mathematizing Safety
    Senior Research Engineer
    Y. M.

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INTERVIEW 1

  • Taking Control of Energy
    Makoto Ogawa
    1st Energy Technology Research Dept.
    Staff Research Engineer

    Majored in Industrial Chemistry
    Master's Graduate
    Joined IAEC in 1992

    My research involves all aspects of automobile related electrical power energy systems, including vehicle power and hybrid systems.
    Recently, I have been involved in R&D activities regarding technology used for extending battery life and decreasing energy consumption through alternator (on-board power generator) voltage control.
    This technology is being employed on Isuzu vehicles sold overseas.
  • Bridging Research with Actual Products
    Technical reporting conferences are held by IAEC once a year.
    These conferences allow us the opportunity to present the contents of our research activities to Isuzu Group employees in a sort of an exhibition fashion. It was at one of these conferences that we received the go ahead to undertake development of the alternator voltage control technology currently used on Isuzu export vehicles.
    Being able to have the ideas we share with other Isuzu Group members turn into actual products; it's things like this that make doing this job interesting and so worthwhile.
    These reporting conferences sometimes yield unexpected inquiries from other divisions in the company who feel that our technology could be useful to them as well.
  • An Open and Honest Environment to Conduct Research in Earnest
    As numerous types of technology are intertwined with each other in automobiles, it often becomes necessary to obtain know-how from specialists in different fields over the course of conducting research. Luckily, here at IAEC, an environment exists where we can consult with whoever we need to in open and candid manner.
    There have been many times where my research work has been bolstered from assistance provided by others.

    Compared with other companies, much less of a barrier exists between senior and junior staff members or between managers and their staff.
    The group activities we can participate in here also help cultivate a positive atmosphere. We can take part in activities such as skiing or running marathons.
    In my case, I belong to our company's baseball team "MAX", in which I also serve as the manager.

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INTERVIEW 2

  • Striving for Improvements in Fuel Economy
    Keita Arato
    1st Engine Research Dept.
    Senior Research Engineer
    Majored in Energy and Environmental Systems
    Joined IAEC in 2007

    Currently, my research revolves around altering the shape of the engine combustion chamber in order to reduce heat loss and improve fuel efficiency.
    I presented my research at the JSAE Annual Congress held in Fall of 2014. I would like to continue on with this research so that it is eventually utilized in actual products.
  • Engines Are Intriguing
    In university, I studied Mechanical Engineering with the hope that I would someday be able to take part in monozukuri — the process of designing and creating products. In my 4th year of university, I took a course in which we drew cross-sectional drawings of a disassembled engine. It was then that I thought to myself "engines are intriguing" and decided to enter the automobile industry.
    Upon entering graduate school, I joined a laboratory that dealt with internal combustion systems and had an opportunity to take part in joint development between my university and IAEC that focused on creating a program that could simulate the fuel efficiency and exhaust gas emissions of diesel engines.
    With this experience under my belt, I joined IAEC after graduation.
  • Expanding Research Horizons through Curiosity and Autonomy
    In order to get the best research results, it is necessary to know and think about various kinds of things. In the research I am conducting now, not only is knowledge regarding the shape of combustion chambers necessary, but so is knowledge regarding materials. In the future, I look forward to being able to expand my research into fields outside of my specialty.

    While research themes are generally set depending on the company's overall business strategy, as long as there is a connection to that theme, I am for the most part able to conduct my research freely. This is one advantage of IAEC. It is for these reasons that I think IAEC is a great place for those who think about various things and work with autonomy.

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INTERVIEW 3

  • Turning Plans into Reality
    Kenji Kikushima
    General Affairs Dept.
    Mechanic Team
    Mechanic

    Graduated from Automotive Mechanics School
    Joined IAEC in 2008

    My job is to work along with researchers to perform engine experiments.
    I have wide-ranging responsibilities that span from setting up equipment and test environments to specifications set by researchers to gathering data and maintaining machinery.
    At the moment, I am mainly participating in testing of a prototype engine for use in Isuzu's flagship "Elf" models.
  • Contributing to Research at the Workshop Level
    In junior high school, I became interested in the work of mechanics and studied automobile maintenance in high school and technical college. When searching for employment after college graduation, I at first tried getting work at car dealerships. However, upon recommendation by a career counselor at my school, I took part in an open house at IAEC and was introduced to an exciting development workshop environment unlike any I had ever seen. It was then that I selected IAEC as my first choice for employment.
    Although determining the details of experiments and designing the equipment is the job of researchers, I am able to make suggestions regarding things such as equipment assembly or data collection methods from the viewpoint of a technician who is actually coming into regular contact with the engines themselves.
    Although this kind of work is something people usually associate with being done largely by men, women can also excel at performing this role.
  • Always with the Customer in Mind
    People sometimes come up to and tell me that they purchased an Isuzu vehicle such as the Elf. When they tell me things like how sturdy their Isuzu vehicle is, I think to myself "I must make an engine that is sturdy, too". Although it seems there's a distance between the Development Department and the end users of Isuzu vehicles, it's at moments like those that I realize that's not actually the case.
    In the future, I think it would be a good idea for the technicians who serve on the front lines of Isuzu vehicle development to come together to improve the organization structure of research workshops. My goal would be to raise the operations system of Isuzu to a completely different level than that of other companies so that people would say "Wow, R&D at Isuzu is unlike any other company!".

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INTERVIEW 4

  • Mathematizing Safety
    Y. M.
    2nd Vehicle Research Dept.
    Senior Research Engineer

    Majored in Mechanical Engineering
    Master's Graduate
    Joined IAEC in 2008

    My research deals mainly with safety devices.
    Since joining IAEC, I have worked on simulations for vehicle controls that stabilize the steering system and the vehicle.
    Currently, my research theme deals with quantifying and mathematizing collected driving data for use in increasing driving safety.
  • Seeing Your Research Through
    I first started to have an interest in automobiles when I worked part time at a gas station. However, despite selecting to study mechanics in university, the professors in my laboratory would send me home early when research continued until late at night as they were concerned for my safety. It was this that made me decide to attend graduate school so that I could study how I wanted to and avoid having to miss important research activities that went on late into the evening.
    My personality is one in which some things tend to continually stay on my mind. In fact, there have been times when I was able to solve a problem I had been having trouble with in my dreams. I believe that "enjoying what you do" is more important than "doing what you enjoy", and that continuing to do your best will result in making anything more enjoyable.
  • Exchanging Ideas Is a Shortcut to Success
    A large part of my job involves gathering data. Sometimes while going over data, I'll come across an unexpected finding or number. Things like this excite me and pinpointing the answers to questions like "Why?" and "How?" is interesting for me. For others who share this feeling of enjoying the unexpected, I think this would be a great place to work.

    I also believe that it's important to speak frankly about your opinions. This helps in the product creation process where people of different backgrounds must clearly get all their thoughts into the open and convey the reasoning for those opinions. In my case, I enjoy having the opportunity to work with people who have are decisive and make an effort to explain their thoughts and opinions.