Professor Shigeru Yao and Dr Patchiya Phanthong are conducting highly collaborative research that is focused on improving mechanical technology for recycling plastics, as well as extending the shelf life of plastics, thus reducing plastic waste. The researchers are based at the Yao Laboratory, in the Department of Chemical Engineering, Fukuoka University, Japan. Phanthong is a Project Research Assistant Professor from the Research Institute for the Creation of Functional and Structural Materials working under the supervision of Yao. In addition to heading up the lab, Yao is also the lead for the NEDO (New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization) Advanced Research Program for Energy and Environmental Technologies. In their work, the researchers are collaborating with both industry and academia which is essential to its progression.