Young
Researcher Award

2018/2019 APAC Young Researcher Award Recipient – Nobuhiro Yanai

Research Interests


  • Functional chemistry of photo-excited triplet state
  • Control of energy migration in molecular assemblies for photon upconversion
  • Materials development for dynamic nuclear polarization using photo-excited triplet electrons

Research Achievements


I have developed new bridges between chemistries of photo-excited triplet state and molecular self-assembly. Among various functions of photo-excited triplet state, I am particularly interested in photon upconversion and dynamic nuclear polarization. We have been trying to solve the essential problems of these research fields by the introduction of supramolecular chemistry and metal-organic framework (MOF) chemistry.

Summary of Research Work


I have introduced the concept of molecular self-assembly into the field of triplet-triplet annihilation based photon upconversion (TTA-UC). TTA-UC has attracted much attention for its solar energy and photobiology applications. I have achieved a significantly high upconversion efficiency at very low excitation intensity close to solar irradiance by fast triplet exciton diffusion in dense chromophore assemblies. In addition, I have solved the major challenge of TTA-UC for real-world applications, near infrared-to-visible upconversion, by developing new upconversion mechanisms. The potential of my works to revolutionize the future solar energy utilization was authorized in the 7th Chemical Sciences and Society Summit (CS3).

Publication Credits


Published 64 papers to date. Obtained over 3,300 total citations with a Hirsch index of 26

Conference Speakerships


  • “Making Triplet Dynamic Nuclear Polarization More Accessible and Feasible” 60th Experimental Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Conference (ENC 2019), California, USA, 2019 Apr.
  • “Photon Upconversion in Molecular Assemblies” 10th Asian Photochemistry Conference (APC) 2018, Taipei, Taiwan, 2018 Dec.
  • “Photon Upconversion in Self-Assembled Molecular Materials” SPIE Optics + Photonics 2018, San Diego, USA, 2018 Aug.
  • “Photon Upconversion in Self-Assembled Molecular Systems” Spring Meeting of the Polymer Society of Korea, Daejeon, Korea, 2019 Apr.
  • “Coordination Chemistry for Photon Upconversion” 4th Japan-Canada Joint Symposium on Coordination Chemistry, Miyazaki, Japan, 2017 Nov.
  • “Photon upconversion toward enhancing renewable energy productions” The 9th Asian Conference on Organic Electronics (A-COE2017), KAIST, Korea, 2017 Oct.
  • “PHOTON UPCONVERSION IN MOLECULAR ASSEMBLIES” 11th Japan-China Joint Symposium on Metal Cluster Compounds, Nagoya, Japan, 2017 Oct.
  • “Photon Upconversion: Current Status and Future Challenges” The Seventh Chemical Sciences and Scoiety Summit (CS3), Dalian, China, 2017 Sep.
  • “Photon Upconversion based on Triplet Energy Migration” RSC Inorganic Chemistry Symposium, Fukuoka, Japan, 2016 Oct.
  • “Supramolecular Systems for photon conversion technologies” China-Japan Joint Symposium on Functional Supramolecular Architectures, Tianjin University, China, 2014 Dec.

Awards and Accolades


  • Award for Young Chemists, Chemical Society of Japan, Japan (2019)
  • Award for Encouragement of Research in Coordination Chemistry, Japan Society of Coordination Chemistry, Japan (2018)
  • Award for Encouragement of Research in Polymer Science, the Society of Polymer Science, Japan (2016)
  • CSJ Presentation Award 2014, 94th Annual Meeting of the Chemical Society of Japan, Japan (2014)
  • First prize winner, the Quadrant Award 2013, Switzerland (2013)