Famous Chemists from Japan

List of notable or famous chemists from Japan, with bios and photos, including the top chemists born in Japan and even some popular chemists who immigrated to Japan. If you're trying to find out the names of famous Japanese chemists then this list is the perfect resource for you. These chemists are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known chemist from Japan is included when available.

List includes Ryōji Noyori, Masaru Kitano and more.

This historic chemists from Japan list can help answer the questions "Who are some Japanese chemists of note?" and "Who are the most famous chemists from Japan?" These prominent chemists of Japan may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected Japanese chemists.

Use this list of renowned Japanese chemists to discover some new chemists that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. {#nodes}

  • Ei-ichi Negishi (根岸 英一, Negishi Eiichi) is a Manchurian-born Japanese chemist who has spent most of his career at Purdue University in the United States. He is the Herbert C. Brown Distinguished Professor and Director of the Negishi-Brown Institute at Purdue. He is best known for his discovery of the Negishi coupling. He was awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for palladium catalyzed cross couplings in organic synthesis" jointly with Richard F. Heck and Akira Suzuki.
    • Age: 87
    • Birthplace: Manchuria, China
  • Eiichi Nakamura

    Eiichi Nakamura (中村 栄一, Nakamura Eiichi, born 24 February 1951) is a Japanese chemist and professor of chemistry at University of Tokyo in Japan.
    • Age: 72
    • Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
  • Hideki Sakurai

    Hideki Sakurai (櫻井 英樹, Sakurai Hideki, born May 16, 1931) is a Japanese chemist. He discovered the Sakurai reaction in 1976.
    • Age: 91
    • Birthplace: Japan
  • Katsuko Saruhashi
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Fair use

    Katsuko Saruhashi

    Katsuko Saruhashi (猿橋 勝子, Saruhashi Katsuko, March 22, 1920 – September 29, 2007) was a Japanese geochemist who created tools that let her take some of the first measurements of carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in seawater. She later showed evidence of the dangers of radioactive fallout and how far it can travel. Along with this focus on safety, she also researched peaceful uses of nuclear power. Her other major area of significance involved raising the number and status of women scientists, especially in Japan. She established both the Society of Japanese Women Scientists and the Saruhashi Prize, which is awarded annually to a female scientist who serves as a role model for younger women ...more
    • Age: Dec. at 87 (1920-2007)
    • Birthplace: Japan
  • Kikunae Ikeda
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain
    Kikunae Ikeda (池田 菊苗, Ikeda Kikunae, 8 October 1864 – 3 May 1936) was a Japanese chemist and Tokyo Imperial University professor of Chemistry who, in 1908, uncovered the chemical basis of a taste he named umami. It is one of the five basic tastes along with sweet, bitter, sour and salty.In 1907 at the Tokyo Imperial University in Japan, Professor Ikeda was eating dinner with his family when he suddenly stopped. That day the dashi broth in his soup was more delicious than normal; after stirring a few times he realized the difference was the umami flavor from the addition of kombu. He understood that kombu was the secret to that flavor, and from that day on he studied the chemical composition ...more
    • Age: Dec. at 71 (1864-1936)
    • Birthplace: Kyoto, Keihanshin, Japan
  • Kyoko Nozaki

    Kyoko Nozaki (野崎 京子, Nozaki Kyōko, born 9 February 1964) is a Japanese chemist and Professor of Chemistry at University of Tokyo in Japan.
    • Age: 58
    • Birthplace: Japan