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Home > News Room > NEC C&C Foundation Awards 2010 C&C Prize to Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki, Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa

NEC C&C Foundation Awards 2010 C&C Prize to Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki, Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa and Dr. Linus Torvalds

*** For immediate use October 19, 2010

[2010 C&C Prize Recipients]

Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki
Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki

Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa
Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa

Dr. Linus Torvalds
Dr. Linus Torvalds

[NEC C&C Foundation 25th Anniversary Memorial Award Recipients]

Dr. Kuninori Uesugi
Dr. Kuninori Uesugi

Dr. Jun'ichiro Kawaguchi
Dr. Jun'ichiro Kawaguchi

Tokyo, October 19, 2010 - The NEC C&C Foundation today announced that the 2010 C&C Prize will be awarded to two groups. Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki and Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa will represent Group A and Dr. Linus Torvalds will represent Group B. Each recipient will be recognized with a certificate of merit and a plaque. Each group will also receive a cash award of ten million yen.

The C&C Prize was established in 1985 and is awarded to distinguished persons in recognition of outstanding contributions to R&D activities and pioneering work related to the integration of computers and communications technologies and the social impact of developments in these fields. This year's two recipient groups are outlined below.

The prize ceremony and acceptance speeches will be held on Wednesday, November 24 from 15:00 at the ANA Intercontinental Hotel Tokyo.

The foundation, commemorating its 25th anniversary, created the "NEC C&C Foundation 25th Anniversary Memorial Award" and its presentation is also scheduled at the C&C Prize ceremony. The recipients of the memorial award will be recognized with a plaque and will receive a cash award of one million yen in total.

1. 2010 C&C Prize Recipients

  • Group A
    • Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki
      President, Toyota Technological Institute
      Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo

    • Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa
      Director of Institute for Nano Quantum Information Electronics
      Professor, Institute of Industrial Science
      The University of Tokyo
    For Pioneering and Leading Contributions to the Research, Development,and Progress of Quantum Wire and Quantum Dot Semiconductor Devices

    Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki and Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa presented a pioneering theoretical proposal on applying microstructures (namely, quantum wires and quantum dots) to semiconductor devices such as field-effect transistors (FETs) and semiconductor lasers, which dramatically improved device performance and characteristics. The doctors' proposal resulted in quantum wire FETs and quantum dot semiconductor lasers due to the progress of successive nano-processing technologies. In particular, devices at the practical level were commercialized as quantum dot lasers, and they are expected to enjoy significant growth. Moreover, their research on quantum wires and quantum dots developed into elements having new functions and higher performance by controlling a single-electron or a single-photon.

    Dr. Hiroyuki Sakaki proposed a new element concept for controlling quantum-electron movement in an electronic layer by focusing on the two-dimensional movements of the electrons in the conduction layer of metal-oxide semiconductor FETs (MOSFETs). This control was achieved with the introduction of a microstructure barrier such as a line or mesh at intervals of about ten nanometers. As a result, he proposed a negative-resistance function element in 1975 and quantum wire FET in 1980. The quantum wire FET was a pioneering one that preceded the FETs that utilize a one-dimensional electron, such as carbon nanotubes. Moreover, in the middle of the 1990s, a heterostructure FET with a quantum dot was attained, and the possible applications to memory devices and photodetectors were presented. This research led to the single-electron transistor by controlling single-electron conduction, which is utilized in the fields of measurement, quantum information processing, etc., as well as for nano-size wire FETs, which are used for next-generation LSIs, sensors, and more.

    Dr. Yasuhiko Arakawa elaborated on the conventional quantum thin-film structure in cooperation with Dr. Sakaki in 1982, presented the concept of the quantum dot that confines the electron three-dimensionally in the semiconductor, and proposed the world's first quantum dot laser as an application in the photonics field. A lot of the pioneering forecasts Dr. Arakawa made about the characteristics of the quantum dot laser were proven one after another in 1990 or later due to the progress of nano-fabrication processing technologies and device-demonstration capabilities.

    Subsequently, quantum dot lasers with a low lasing threshold, no temperature dependence, and high-speed direct modulation exceeding 10 Gbps were developed. They have already been commercialized in cooperation with the industrial world. In addition, great strides have been made in research and development on high-power, low-noise semiconductor optical amplifiers and single-photon quantum devices. Moreover, applied research on quantum cryptography that makes the best use of these amplifiers and devices is experiencing progress now. Additionally, the development of the quantum dot for solar batteries is anticipated with great expectations.

    Consequently, the NEC C&C Foundation highly praises Drs. Hiroyuki Sakaki and Yasuhiko Arakawa for their contributions to the progress of quantum wire and quantum dot semiconductor devices that have paved the way for new devices for telecommunications and are expected to be applied in many other fields.

  • Group B

    • Dr. Linus Torvalds
      Fellow, The Linux Foundation

    For the Creation of the Linux Kernel and the Promotion of Open-Source Operating System Development

    Dr. Linus Torvalds developed Linux in 1991 as an operating system (OS) having functions interchangeable with those of UNIX, which had been in use for years. Linux was released to the public as open-source software, becoming a new type of software development platform available for anyone to utilize freely. Owing to this open-source approach to software, Linux was not only used as an OS for personal computers but also widely adopted for information technology devices ranging from built-in equipment such as for cellular phones and consumer electronics to mainframes and supercomputers. Therefore, it greatly contributed to the development and progress of today's information technology devices.

    Dr. Torvalds created Linux while a student at the University of Helsinki in Finland. In those days back in 1991, UNIX was recognized as business-use software and adopted for expensive workstations and minicomputers. In contrast, Linux was developed for inexpensive home-use computers due to Dr. Torvalds' efforts, and had a significant impact on people worldwide. There was also Minix, a UNIX-like OS for personal computers. However, its functions were limited to educational use. Linux was an extremely simple system at the start. However, because it was released as open-source software, anyone was allowed to utilize and improve it freely and it progressed to the point where it was equal to, or better than, UNIX in every way. Dr. Torvalds' initial contribution was that he invented a totally new approach to software development that made programs available to the public as open-source software, enabling a wide range of people to participate in its improvement. His approach succeeded in spreading Linux worldwide without breaking up the Linux kernel by packaging software with network support, utilities, etc. The approach also created a distribution method for correct and easy installation that satisfied users' needs.

    Linux remains widely used as an OS for personal computers and small- and medium-scale network servers around the world. It is also still widely used as an embedded system such as for cellular phones and consumer electronics and for large-scale information devices like mainframes and supercomputers. Recently, it has been adopted for various smart phones and many are looking forward to its use as an OS for new portable terminal devices.

    Linux has had an immense impact on the use, progress, and dissemination of information devices since its release to the public. The NEC C&C Foundation thus highly praises Dr. Torvalds for his contributions to the advancement of the information technology industry, education, research, and the improvement of our lives.

    See the attachment for profiles of the recipients

2.NEC C&C Foundation 25th Anniversary Memorial Award Recipients

  • Dr. Kuninori Uesugi
    Professor Emeritus
    Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

  • Dr. Jun'ichiro Kawaguchi
    Project Manager, MUSE-C "Hayabusa"
    Program Director, Lunar and Planetary Exploration Program Group
    Chief Researcher, Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, Space Systems and Astronautics
    Professor, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

    For the Development of Integration Systems for "Hayabusa" Comprising Communications and Control Technologies as their Core, Enabling the Unmanned Craft to Land and Take off from an Extraterrestrial Object (the Asteroid Itokawa) and Return to Earth for the First Time in History

    Asteroid explorer Hayabusa was launched aboard the M-V Launch Vehicle in May 2003. It reached the orbit of asteroid Itokawa in September 2005. It then rendezvoused with Itokawa, obtained likely samples of the asteroid, and successfully returned to Earth in June 2010. Hayabusa is the world's first unmanned explorer that succeeded in landing on an extraterrestrial object and making a roundtrip interplanetary flight. It is also the world's first explorer that landed on an asteroid and returned samples to earth. The elemental technologies used for Hayabusa mission are at the top of integrated systems comprising communications and control technologies as their core. Their successful use was a major step forward for the world's space development.

    Dr. Kuninori Uesugi greatly contributed to the research and development of space exploration technologies in Japan and to the creation of the Hayabusa Project and its remarkable results. In a series of developments ranging from making Japan's first interplanetary explorer to the success of the Hayabusa Project, the following contributions of Dr. Uesugi deserve special mention. 1) His work on "Sakigake" and "Suisei" resulted in Japanese craft escaping from Earth's gravity for the first time, and he acquired interplanetary navigation technology. 2) With "Hiten," he proved orbit-control technology with a double lunar swing-by (the direction of the explorer changes by utilizing the gravity of the moon) and orbited and landed on the Moon. 3) He was the first in the world to propose a sample return mission for comet nuclei (the SOCCER Plan). 4) He laid the foundation for the achievements of Hayabusa and was a major factor in the successful development, launch, and operations as the project executive.

    Dr. Jun'ichiro Kawaguchi drew up the concept for Hayabusa and proposed it to the world. He played a central role in the mission as the project manager involved in all aspects of the endeavor, from the development of the fundamental technologies to total management. In particular, in a series of developments that led to the Hayabusa's creation, launch, successful return to Earth, and the sample collection, he contributed the following. 1) He succeeded in designating asteroid 1998SF36 (later named Itokawa) as a valid new target after formulating the trajectory planning by creating the EDVEGA method (Electric Delta-V Earth Gravity Assist), which combines an Earth swing-by (the direction of the explorer changes by using the Earth's gravity) and orbit-energy accumulation from an ion engine as an orbit-control technique. 2) He succeeded in landing on and taking off from Itokawa by initiating the development of optical navigation and autonomous navigation. 3) He deserves special mention for his leadership, which saved the Hayabusa from predicaments through his careful and logical considerations at the operation site when problems struck the explorer one after another.

    Drs. Uesugi and Kawaguchi's leadership and management based on wide-ranging experience and deep knowledge about the development of space exploration technologies greatly contributed to the many successes of the Hayabusa mission. The NEC C&C Foundation thus is pleased to highly praise their achievements through its 25th Anniversary Memorial Award.

    See the attachment for profiles of the recipients

About the NEC C&C Foundation
The NEC C&C Foundation is a non-profit organization established in March 1985 to foster further growth in the electronics industry by encouraging and supporting research and development activities and pioneering work related to the integration of computers and communications technologies, that is, C&C, and ultimately to contribute to the world economy and the enrichment of human life. The Foundation is funded by NEC Corporation.

The Foundation currently has two main activities. It presents the annual C&C Prizes to recognize outstanding contributions to R&D activities and pioneering work in the area of C&C. Candidates are recommended from all over the world. Each prize winner receives a certificate, a plaque, and a cash award (ten million yen per group). As of 2010, 85 prominent persons had received the prize. In addition, an Outstanding Paper Award for Young C&C Researchers is awarded annually to one outstanding paper presented at an international conference overseas with the support of a grant from the Foundation. The recipient is given a cash award of 200,000 yen.

The Foundation also gives the following three grants: (1) grant to enable researchers in Japan to attend international conferences overseas to make presentations in the field of C&C, (2) grant to non-Japanese researchers in Japan, (3) grant to students proceeding to doctoral courses.

For additional information, please visit the NEC C&C Foundation website at:

About NEC Corporation
NEC Corporation is a leader in the integration of IT and network technologies that benefit businesses and people around the world. By providing a combination of products and solutions that cross utilize the company's experience and global resources, NEC's advanced technologies meet the complex and ever-changing needs of its customers. NEC brings more than 100 years of expertise in technological innovation to empower people, businesses and society. For more information, visit NEC at


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NEC C&C Foundation

Joseph Jasper
NEC Corporation

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