1960s

  Corporate history and product development
1960
  • Capital increased to 8 million yen.
  • Signed technical support agreement with RCA Corporation (U.S.A.).
1961
  • Tokyo Business Office opened in Takanawa, Minatoku.
  • Production of PbS detectors began and Infrared vidicons were put on the market.
    PbS photoconductive detector

    PbS photoconductive detector

  • Obtained a Mining and Manufacturing Industry Technological Test Grant from the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) for "Research into infrared vidicons".

Research began on the "infrared visicon" in 1961.

1962
  • Silver-bismuth photomultiplier tubes were put on the market.
  • Obtained a Mining and Manufacturing Industry Technological Test Grant from MITI for research into "Supercompact TV camera".
1963
  • Succeeded in production of 1/2-inch vidicons. Sales of infrared video cameras began.
1964
  • Ichino Factory (present Main Factory) started operation.
  • UV-TRON and solar blind photomultiplier tubes were put on the market.
  • Obtained a Mining and Manufacturing Industry Technological Test Grant from MITI for research into "Cascade image tubes".
1965
  • Head-on type photomultiplier tubes and storage tubes were put on the market.
1966
  • New York Business Office opened.
  • Capital increased to 12 million yen.
  • Experimental production of hollow cathode lamps and deuterium lamps began.
  • Obtained a Mining and Manufacturing Industry Technological Test Grant from MITI for "Research into vacuum UV photomultiplier tubes".
1967
  • Main plant and office moved to Ichino-cho, Hamamatsu City.
  • Capital increased to 30 million yen.
  • 1/2-inch side-on type photomultiplier tubes, electron multiplier tubes, pick-up storage tubes and glow modulator tubes were put on the market.
1968
  • Trolley-line abrasion measurement system developed. Video analyzers were put on the market.
  • Obtained an Important Technology Research and Development Fund Grant from MITI for Experimental production of space-use TV cameras.
1969
  • Hamamatsu Corporation established as a U.S.A.-affiliated company.
  • Image dissectors, Iriscorders (pupil response analysis systems) and multialkali photomultiplier tubes were put on the market.
  • Then President Horiuchi received the Purple Ribbon Medal/ Japan.

 

 

Design technology that was said to surpass that of NASA


Left: The XY tracker for rocket tracking
Right: The "Suisei" probe for tracking Halley's comet

We spent two years developing automatic tracking for rockets, something that was requested by Professor Tsuneyoshi Uemura of Tokyo University, and after many hardships we succeeded in creating a prototype. This XY tracker was able to flawlessly track the rocket immediately after launch, and observers visiting from America praised it highly, saying that it was the most advanced device of anything that they had seen at the Uchinoura test facility. At that time, even NASA was using photographic strip film for orbital tracking of rockets, and the XY tracker was truly an epochal device. It provided the opportunity for us to take part in space development projects such as cameras for observing the aurora borealis and cameras for the "Suisei", the probe tracking Halley's comet.

 

 

Image measurement technology: The vision of an ophthalmologist


Iris testing using the Iriscoder

Tetsu Ishikawa, a lecturer at the Tokyo University Faculty of Medicine, thought that if a device were developed that made it possible to accurately measure changes in the surface area of the iris closely related to autonomous nervous system functions, it would be the first such device in the world to be able to do so, and he came to us to see if we could develop it. The development of this "Iriscoder" not only required that we focus everything on improving the product precision, as we had in the past, but also required that we take on a field that was completely unknown to us. That was the field of medical equipment manufacturing, which included camera performance, the convenience of use for physicians, taking the psychological state of the subject into consideration, and other elements with which we were unfamiliar. This device was used to study adaptation of the eye to darkness and brightness when entering and driving through tunnels, and the results of those experiments are still at work today in expressway tunnel illumination.

 

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