Seminar: Innovative Growers in the Creative Economy

In the morning of 18 November, KIAT, KITECH and the Netherlands embassy will organize a seminar, where several innovative high tech SME’s from the Netherlands and Korea will present their road to success in the highly competitive semicondutor and mechatronics sector. Through constant investment in R&D, they have become a leader in their specific niche market. In the afternoon, a matchmaking will take place. During 30 minutes’ meetings, you will have the chance to meet one or more of the Dutch companies to discuss possible future business or joint projects.

Date: 18 November, 2013
Time: 09:00 ~ 17:30
Location: Seoul Plaza Hotel
Room: Grand Ballroom

For the seminar and matchmaking, please register online on:

The following Dutch companies will be present:

Admesy (colorimeter, spectrometer, Spectrocolorimeter)
Download 1: Company profile

Brabantse Ontwikkelingsmaatschappij (Regional development agency)
Download 1: Company profile

Lionix (microfluidics, optofluidics, integrated optics, MEMS & micro machining)
Download 1: Company profile

NL Agency (Eureka/FP7 national contact points, EU-subsidy programs, technology matchmaking)

NTS (design, engineering, assembly & production of opto-mechatronic modules & parts)
Download 1: Company profile

Saxion University of Applied Science (nanotechnology)
Download 1: Nano technology

Storgrid (cloud computing, data management, data security)
Download1: Company profile

TNO Industrial Innovation (R&D institute, mechatronics, vacuum technology, prototype development)
Download 1: Company profile
Download 2: References
Download 3: TNO intro (한문)

For registration of this event, please visit:


Samsung Electronics ranks no. 2 in terms of R&D investment worldwide

Samsung Electronics turns out to have spent the second highest amount of money for research & development (R&D) among global companies. A management consulting company Booz & Company announced the results of its analysis on global companies’ R&D spending trend on October 24.Volkswagen came on top with US$11.4 billion, while Samsung Electronics ranked No. 2 with $10.4 billion.

Samsung Electronics moved up by four notches from No. 2 this year from No. 6 last year. Following Samsung Electronics are Roche with $10.2 billion, Intel with $10.1 billion, and Microsoft with $9.8 billion. Toyota was positioned at No. 6 with $9.8 billion, followed by Novatis with $9.3 billion, and Merck with $8.2 billion.

Source: Korea IT Times.

Samsung to cut chip investment

Samsung Electronics, the world’s top supplier of memory chips, plans to cut its investment in components by as much as 30 percent next year. The company doesn’t plan to build any more plants to make memory chips because the industry is undergoing rapid structural change.

Industry officials at Samsung’s local primary parts suppliers say that aggressive investment does not guarantee high returns anymore due to industry consolidation as well as rising uncertainty surrounding technology and sluggish demand.

“Investment in chips will be cut by 30 percent next year, at least, because we believe Samsung doesn’t have plans to build new fabrication facilities. Total investment in components will remain under 10 trillion won throughout 2014,” said a senior executive at one of the company’s suppliers by telephone. “It is unlikely that the industry will see cash-burning business projects in chips next year as complexity is increasing because the market is approaching scaling limits.”

For full article, see Korea Times.

Korea ranks the second among OECD countries for R&D investment to GDP ratio

Korea’s R&D (research & development) scale was found to be in the top level among those of OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries. On the 24th, the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning announced the presentation of a report titled “OECD Science, Technology and Industry Score Board’ at the ‘OECD Global Forum on the Knowledge Economy’ held in Istanbul, Turkey.

According to the report, Korea was ranked the second in terms of the ratio of R&D intensity to GDP and the ratio of R&D investment by private companies to GDP. In the last report published in 2011, Korea was ranked the fourth in both categories. In addition, Korea was ranked the fourth in terms of the government’s private R&D subsidy and tax support scale to GDP ratio.

Korea recorded 4.03% in the ratio of total R&D investment to GDP, and thus is only 0.35% behind the top-ranking Israel (4.38%). Finland and Japan, the third and the fourth countries, recorded 3.78% and 3.39% respectively.

For full article, see Korea IT News.

Core technology for lithium air secondary battery developed

Will the day come to travel Seoul-Busan with an electronic vehicle? The core technology for lithium air secondary battery, the next generation high capacity battery, has been finally developed.
A research team formed by KAIST Department of Materials Science’s Professors Il-Doo Kim and Seokwoo Jeon, and Kyonggi University Department of Materials Science’s Professor Yong Joon Park has created a ‘lithium air secondary battery,’ with five times greater storage than the lithium-ion secondary battery, by developing a nano fiber-graphene composite catalyst. The research results are published in Aug. 8th online edition of Nano Letters, an academic journal of authority in the nano fields.
A cathode of a lithium-ion battery consists of graphite and an anode of the battery consists of a lithium transition metal oxide. Lithium-ion batteries are widely used in mobile phones and laptops. However, lithium-ion batteries cannot support electric vehicles, providing energy for only 160 kilometers on one full charge. The lithium air secondary battery just developed by the research team uses lithium on the cathode and oxygen on the anode. It is earning the popular acknowledgement among the next generation secondary battery research community for having lightweight mass and high energy density.
For full article, see KAIST.

New Galaxy Round phablet screen is curved

2013_10_curved phoneNot long after hinting at introducing a smart device with a curved display, Samsung Electronics introduced the Galaxy Round. Like the Galaxy Gear smartwatch introduced last month at one of the world’s largest consumer fairs in Berlin, the smartphone with a curved display is the first of its kind.

The Galaxy Round is a variant of Samsung’s popular Galaxy Note “phablet.” Its curved display moves the tech world a step closer to wearable devices with curved and ultimately flexible screens.

The Galaxy Round’s 5.7-inch display has a slight curve on the vertical axis and weighs less than the Galaxy Note 3, allowing a more comfortable grip than flat-screen models, mobile carrier SK Telecom said in a statement.

Curved displays open up possibilities for bendable designs that could eventually transform the high-end smartphone market by allowing mobile and wearable gadgets to take new forms.

For full article see Joongang Daily.

KAIST team produces gasoline using E. coli

2013_10_ecoliA group of scientists from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology has discovered a way to produce gasoline using bacteria for the first time, the school announced. The finding, published online in the journal Nature on Sunday, could mark a step toward developing new renewable energy.
The research team led by Lee Sang-yup, a professor at the chemical and biomolecular engineering department, used Escherichia coli bacteria that naturally turn sugars into fat to convert fatty acid into oil.
There are a few examples of research succeeding in producing diesel fuel through modified bacteria, but this is the first time a possible substitute for gasoline has been created, the research team said.
For full article, see Korea Herald.

LG to mass-produce flexible batteries

LG Chem’s cable, stepped and curved batteries in an unveiling event in Seoul, Tuesday. Courtesy of LG Chem

LG Chem said Tuesday that it’s been producing curved batteries since July this year at its plant in the Chinese city of Nanjing. “We’ve successfully developed batteries that haven’t existed before with our own patents, and that advancement is going to help us take the lead over our rivals in the race for next-generation digital devices,” said Kwon Young-soo, president of the company’s battery division.

The executive continued, “This is one of the greatest achievements for us. LG Chem will expand our leadership in small-sized batteries as well as continue our expansion in being the ongoing leader in car batteries and those for energy storage solutions.”

The firm said these curved batteries are already being used to power G2 smartphones manufactured by LG Electronics, the group’s consumer electronics affiliate. LG Electronics isn’t the only one that has shown interest in adopting curved batteries for upcoming flagship models as LG Chem is preparing to sell the products to other smartphone vendors, said a company spokesman Owen Sung.

For full article, see Korea Times.

KAIST team employs DNA engineering: Gasoline made from biomass

A fermentation system developed at KAIST is used to produce short-chain alkane for gasoline from genetically engineered microorganisms.
/ Courtesy of KAIST

A team of researchers has developed a technology to extract gasoline from microorganisms fed with sugar through DNA modification, the science ministry announced Monday. It is the world’s first such feat.

The research team at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) engineered the gene in E.coli responsible for fatty acid metabolism so as to enable them to produce short-chain alkanes, saturated hydrocarbons that are a component of gasoline.

The technology of producing short-chain alkanes is considered a meaningful breakthrough because it serves as a platform for alternatives to various petrochemical products including surfactants and lubricants. The discovery was published by Nature magazine early morning Monday in Korean time.

The KAIST team has so far succeeded in producing 580 milligrams of gasoline from one liter of glucose culture solution per hour. However, this is too small for the technology to draw commercial interest from the petrochemical industry.

For full article, see Korea Times.