MHI Coral Propagation and Transplantation Technologies Receive "Environmental
Technology Verification" Designation from Ministry of the Environment
Tokyo, June 26, 2013 - (JCN Newswire) - Coral propagation and transplantation
technologies being implemented in a demonstration project under way in the
waters off Ishigaki Island in Japan's Okinawa Prefecture by Mitsubishi
Heavy Industries Bridge & Steel Structures Engineering Co., Ltd. (MBE), a
wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI), have been
received "Environmental Technology Verification" (ETV) status by the
Japanese Ministry of the Environment (MOE). Leveraging this official
designation, MBE now aims for the technologies' early widespread adoption.
Two technologies were jointly recognized by the MOE in granting ETV
designation: one using a weak electrical current to promote coral growth and
the other utilizing electrodeposition technology to transplant coral shelves.
The development of technologies has been conducted in collaboration with The
University of Tokyo, The Nippon Corrosion Engineering Co., Ltd. (NCE),
Ishigaki-based C.P. Farm Co., Ltd. and Akajima Marine Science Laboratory
(AMSL), a private research station of Establishment of Tropical Marine
Ecological Research (ETMER). MBE received the ETV verification number and
official logo from the MOE attesting that the field data have been verified by
In the coral propagation demonstration test, a weak electrical current is used
to promote coral growth. Specifically, magnesium and other metals are attached
to a coral reef consisting primarily of iron, and a weak electrical current is
generated using the differential between the ionization properties of the
different metals (galvanic anode system), which promotes electrodeposition
(adhesion) of the calcium content of the seawater. This process results in the
formation of calcium carbonate, a compound with a skeleton identical to that of
coral, fostering coral skeleton formation.
This is the first time that electrodeposition technology using the galvanic
anode system to continuously supply electricity has been applied to coral
propagation. Earlier attempts have made use of external power sources such as
solar batteries. The new technology was adopted out of concern for potential
damage to power supply equipment from typhoons and in view of problems such as
nighttime power supply stoppages.
Owing to their ability to absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) and other pollutants,
coral reefs play an important role in purifying the earth's environment.
But bleaching attributable to higher sea temperatures along with global warming
has been reducing coral reefs not only in the waters around Okinawa but
increasingly worldwide, creating a major environmental problem.
MBE, by working in collaboration with its academic and corporate partners in
the Ishigaki experiment, is aiming to achieve early widespread adoption of the
new coral propagation and transplantation technologies. At the same time, the
company plans to proceed aggressively forward with other related projects:
these include a floating pier project integrating MHI's swing reduction
floating body technology and coral transplantation technology, and new projects
involving integration with steel structures.
In commemoration of the designation of ETV status by the MOE, from June 26 MHI
will offer a video introduction to its initiatives in coral reproduction in the
CSR Zone of M's Square, the company showroom located on the second floor
of its Shinagawa Head Office Building in Tokyo.
About Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is one
of the world's leading heavy machinery manufacturers, with consolidated
sales of 2,820.9 billion for the year ended March 31, 2012. MHI's diverse
lineup of products and services encompasses shipbuilding, power plants,
chemical plants, environmental equipment, steel structures, industrial and
general machinery, aircraft, space rocketry and air-conditioning systems. For
more information, please visit the MHI website at www.mhi.co.jp.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
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