In hopes that the national government will make a decision on the project, various intiatives to prepare Tohoku for the arrival of the ILC are progressing faster than ever. Ofunato City has set up a new ILC Promotion Office (the first in the coastal area), and the Tohoku ILC Promotion Council and Tohoku Economic Federation held a Science and Technology Innovation Seminar in Sendai on December 1st.
Around 200 people (including representatives of Tohoku businesses and governments) attended the Science and Technology Seminar. Serving as speaker was Specially-appointed Professor Satoru Yamashita of the International Center for Elementary Particle Physics of the University of Tokyo.
Prof. Yamashita explained that in summer 2018, Europe will begin planning and establishing its strategy for particle physics for the next 5 years. “That is why Japan must show its intentions (regarding the ILC) by that time,” he said. “The non-partisan Federation of Diet Members for the ILC will be visiting France in January 2018 along with researchers and other officials to start proper deliberations with the European side.”
The ILC will hold much possibility for technology innovation. “ILC technology will be created to study the laws of the universe, but we can apply it to healthcare, sensors and many other fields to create even more innovation. People in the local area shouldn’t wait for the ILC to come to them; it is crucial to show that you are willing to hustle and challenge yourselves to be part of the project.”
Marketing Director Kenichi Kuroki of Kudo Electric Company, Ltd (a Sendai company that would create power supplies for the ILC) gave his impressions of the project. “There hasn’t been such a huge project in quite some time, so I really hope they bring it to fruition. Research facilities and companies from around the world would gather in the area, which would have a large economic impact.”