Yoshino won the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for creating the world’s first commercially viable lithium-ion battery in 1985. He shares the prize with Professor John B. Goodenough of the University of Texas, US and Professor M. Stanley Whittingham of the State University of New York, US. While employed at the then- Asahi Chemical Industry Co., Yoshino paired polyacetylene anodes with Goodenough’s cobalt oxide cathode design to overcome a critical safety barrier in lithium-ion batteries. He further improved the battery’s performance by developing an aluminium foil current collector and strategically designing its coil-wound structure. Today, lithium-ion batteries are used in a wide range of modern technologies, from smartphones to electric cars. (Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg/Getty Images)
Ever since she joined Toshiba as its first female researcher four decades ago, Miyoko Watanabe has been championing gender diversity and visibility for women in science. We are revisiting this interview with her today on International Women's Day 2022.