16Nov. 2017

Assoc. Prof. Kiminori Maeda visited Freiburg and progressed the activity of the partnership in “Spin Chemistry” community 

Assoc. Prof Kiminori Maeda 


Assoc. Prof. Kiminori Maeda (the author) travelled to Freiburg in Germany, from 17 to 22, and attended Spin Chemistry Meeting (SCM) 2017.  The formal title of the symposium is 15th International Symposium on Spin and Magnetic Field Effect in Chemistry and Related Phenomena.  Spin Chemistry is a sub-field of Chemistry, Physics and Biology, in which electron and nuclear spin related chemical structure and reaction kinetics are discussed.  The first conference was held in Tomakomai, Hokkaido, Japan in 1991 and was regularly held every other year.  Maeda has been attending almost all conferences and has been the international Spin Chemistry Committee members since 2014.  The present conference was 15th and returned to Germany 25 years after the 2nd SCM took place in the city of Konstantz.

The present conference was organized by Prof. Stefan Weber (Freiburg University) and the local organizing committee. The conference venue was a hotel in Schluchsee (Black Forest).  Black Forest is a beautiful nature park of forest, mountains, and lake located about 1hr by a local train from Freiburg city.

The conference was composed of 55 oral talks and about 40 poster presentations.  More than 100 participants from all over the world (UK, Japan, the USA, Russia, India, Switzerland, Canada, Denmark, China, Cyprus, Israel, Italy, the Netherland, and Germany) met together in the same room and discussed the topics:

  • Magnetic Isotope Effects on Chemical Reactivity
  • Chemical Effects of Electron and Nuclear Spins
  • Magnetic Field Effects on Chemical Reactivity
  • Electron and Nuclear Hyperpolarization
  • Radical Pair Chemistry and Physics
  • Role of Spin in Electron Transfer
  • Spin Transport and Spintronics
  • Theory of Spin Chemistry


The first lecture was introductory lecture given by Prof. P. J. Hore, the chairman of the SCM committee.  He presented the history of spin chemistry showing the old photographs (Fig.2)

Maeda did an invited lecture titled “Radical pair spin lifetime and dynamics studied by static and pulsed magnetic field”.  This lecture presented unique and detailed analysis of the time resolved feature of magnetic field effects on reaction yields (MARY) in an important co-enzyme flavin adenine dinucleaotide (FAD) and photo-induced chemical reactions on protein surface.  Maeda also presented a poster “Radical pair dynamics on a protein surface probed by pulsed magnetic field”

In addition to the scientific presentations, Maeda also did the chair of the memorial session of Prof. Klaus Shulten, who made great contributions on the spin chemistry field, in the morning time of 19th. In a break time of the conference sessions, Spin Chemistry Committee meeting was held and discussed the future meeting.  There, Prof. Yasuhiro Kobori (Kobe University) and Maeda proposed to organize 17th SCM meeting in Kobe Japan in 2023.  This proposal has happily accepted by the committee members.

In total, the meeting was quite successful and exciting.  Maeda reconfirmed the importance of international partnership and sharing ideas and concepts in scientific communities.  Already some of the new projects that was seeded in the conference has started.  But not only the business success but more important function of the conference is making nice friendship and sense of humour for enjoying science.

  • A photograph presented in the first lecture by Prof. P. J. Hore (right side of the C. R. Timmel with the PHD celebrating hat). The photograph was taken in 1998 in Oxford, with whole member of Hore’s Group and daughters of Prof. Hore. Maeda (the author, but young), who was staying as an oversea researcher by Ministry of Education in Japan, is on the left edge.
  • Freiburg Minster (the cathedral of Freiburg) visited in the excursion.