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Performance Data

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R&D situation

R&D situation Unit 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Coverage
Total Billions of yen 1,385 1,455 1,506 1,607 1,768 Group
% of sales   4.1 3.6 3.7 4.1 4.3 Group
Employees of R&D position FTEs 1,300 1,300 1,300 1,300 1,300 Group

Open innovation case

Open innovation case 1 Case MHI Group utilized the world's largest CO2 capture system, using the KM CDR process, with a capture capacity of 4,776 metric tons per day for Petra Nova in the U.S. state of Texas, as part of a joint venture between Japan-based JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration Corporation (JX Nippon) and NRG Energy, Inc., an independent power producer in the U.S. This project was carried out in collaboration with Southern Company, a leading U.S. power producer. This process was well received by the energy sector and received the "Plant of the Year 2017" award from POWER Magazine.
Benefit MHI has been involved in R&D into CO2 recovery technology for more than 25 years. This demonstration test of emissions at a coal-fired power plant owned by Southern Company has shortened the development period substantially. Furthermore, over a period of approximately five years, we have succeeded in scaling up the CO2 recovery tenfold, from 500 tons per day (demonstration) to 5,000 tons (commercial). We believe this joint development has enabled us to significantly shorten the cycle from development to practical realization.
Other Impacts The CO2 recovery process we have developed is currently being used at WA Parish Generator No.8, a coal-fired thermal power plant owned by NRG Energy, Inc., in the U.S. state of Texas. This recovery, which commenced on December 29, 2016, resulted in the world's highest volume of CO2 recovery (4,776 tons per day). We expect CO2 recovery technology to grow more popular, contributing to efforts to stop global warming. As a result, we anticipate a 14% reduction in overall CO2 emissions by 2050.
Open innovation case 2 Case MHI has invested in the Geodesic Capital Fund, an investment fund operated by Geodesic Capital. This company, based in the U.S. state of California, was established by John V. Roos, former U.S. ambassador to Japan.
Benefit This action will introduce us to multiple venture companies centered in Silicon Valley. In addition, we will introduce the products and services of several of these companies and conduct evaluation research related to the introduction of such products and services into those of MHI. This in turn will lead to collaboration with individual companies.
Other Impacts By participating in Geodesic-sponsored events to introduce venture companies, as well as seminars, we aim to obtain information on leading-edge technologies such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence (AI), and security, and promote their application to our products.
Open innovation case 3 Case MHI has collaborated with multiple recycled carbon fiber manufacturers to pioneer a new value chain framework ahead of the competition where recycled carbon fibers with high added value are extracted from composite waste materials produced during aircraft wing production for reuse as raw materials for carbon fiber composites.
Benefit Through this process, MHI has reduced the energy load involved in carbon fiber production and reduced CO2 emissions by 10%. MHI produces less than 1,000 tons of composite waste materials a year, and by recycling these materials, it is possible reduce emissions by close to 10,000 tons annually.
Other Impacts We have created a new value chain that leverages the strength of a stable supply of composite material waste.

Process innovation

Process innovation Case
Value chain innovation activity:
We are continuously working on process streamlining and improvement in all business domains, contributing to shortening work hours and reducing costs. For example, by improving the manufacturing process and increasing the sophistication of production management systems in the renewable energy field, we were able to reduce the manufacturing lead time by half, and lower energy costs.

Environmental innovation

Environmental innovation Case
Air Conditioning & Refrigeration:
The ETI-Z series of next-generation centrifugal chillers, the first in the world to use the new environmentally friendly HFO-1233zd (E) refrigerant has been launched. This new refrigerant produces minimal greenhouse gas emissions. The new design of the ETI-Z series also enables best-in-class energy efficiency through the use of a compressor with a high-speed direct motor drive, reducing motor drive energy loss. Through these innovations, the ETI-Z series is able to achieve significant reductions in emissions without compromising on its compact size.

Product adaptation for emerging markets

Product adaptation case Small and medium size gas turbine:
In emerging countries where power grid infrastructure is still rather poor, there is a strong demand for small distributed power sources. H-25 (HP: 28-42MW) (Note), a small- to medium-sized gas turbine, is a compact but highly effcient quality product tailored to the needs of emerging markets, and has been enjoying strong demand. In fiscal 2018, there were orders from China.

(Note) For reference, normally a large gas turbine for power generation has HP200 –300 MW and above, mostly for use in developed markets.

Air Conditioning & Refrigeration:
The 1.5 kW home air-conditioner model has been launched into emerging markets in Southeast Asia (compared with another model with 2.2 kW for developed countries) to meet the needs of "keeping cool only for bedtime comfort" and has been enjoying good sales.
It is expected that this small-electricity model will also contribute to decreasing the burden to the infrastructure in areas where the supply of electricity is not stable.

Improving productivity

Technology introduction By transferring sophisticated manufacturing technology as is, such as machine work and assembly in Japanese factories, we have been achieving both high quality production capability and cost competitiveness. This approach has been taken in various business and products in which quality is essential. In addition, the technology of our primary thermal power plant products, including gas turbines, steam turbines, boilers, Flue Gas Desulfurization (FGD) plants and Selective Catalyst Reduction (SCR), has been introduced by providing licenses to manufacturers in China, Korea, India, etc.
Improving labor productivity To maintain Japanese standards for high quality, a small group operation has been implemented; for developing skilled workers, Japanese engineer educators have been dispatched and overseas trainees have been accepted at Japanese sites.
Vietnam aircraft manufacturers have established an in-house manufacturing technology school where Japanese instructors instruct and educate the Vietnamese employees for their talent development. On-site OJT is also provided, for facilitating early acquisition of the skills. OJT opportunities in Japan (Ooe Factory) are also provided for the Vietnamese employees, aiming at skill acquisition through mutual exchange of employees.
Reviewing procurement agreements or inventory levels Air Conditioning & Refrigeration:
We sell our products through dealerships and distributors in each country (including emerging countries).However, when orders are received, we perform checks of the inventory status along trading routes and thelevel of demand in each country to keep inventory from accumulating.
Furthermore, by devising improved production methods, we are building a supply system that can adjust to changes in demand by shortening production lead time.