Centers & Labs

Global Research Cluster


Team Leader: Kazuo Makishima (D.Sci.)
Kazuo  Makishima(D.Sci.)

In collaboration with JAXA and other institutions, we conduct high-energy astrophysics observations using MAXI (Monitor of All-sky X-ray Image) onboard the International Space Station (ISS). Since 2009 when the MAXI operation started, we have detected with MAXI such celestial events as gamma-ray bursts, black hole novae, tidal disruption of a star, super bursts on neutron stars, nuclear flashes on a white dwarf, and stellar flares. We issue prompt worldwide alerts of these events, publicly release the MAXI data, and conduct the data analysis by ourselves. For two out of the 3 recent detections of Gravitational Wave events, MAXI placed upper limits on simultaneous electromagnetic signals. We also collaborate with the NICER experiment of the USA, placed onboard the ISS in 2017 June.

Main Research Field

Mathematical and physical sciences

Related Research Fields

Interdisciplinary science and engineering


  • Cosmic X-rays and gamma-rays
  • Electro-magnetic counterparts to gravitational wave sources
  • Cosmic rays and particle acceleration
  • Black holes and neutron stars
  • Cosmic nucleosynthesis

Selected Publications

  1. Serino, M., Kawai, N., Negoro, H., Mihara, T., Masumitsu, T. & Nakahira, S.:
    "X-ray upper limits of GW151226 with MAXI",
    Publ. Astr. Soc. Japan 69, in press (2017)
  2. Kawai, N., Negoro, H., Serino, M., Mihara, T., Tanaka, K., Masumitsu, T. & Nakahira, S.:
    "X-ray upper limits of GW150914 with MAXI",
    Publ. Astr. Soc. Japan 69, in press (2017)
  3. Sugimoto, J., Kitamoto, S., Mihara, T. & Matsuoka, M:
    "Orbital modulations of X-ray light curves of Cygnus X-1 in its low/hard and high/soft states",
    Publ. Astr. Soc. Japan 69, id.52 (2017)
  4. Shidatsu, M., Ueda, Y. & Fabrika, S.:
    "NuSTAR and Swift Observations of the Ultraluminous X-Ray Source IC 342 X-1 in 2016: Witnessing Spectral Evolution",
    Astrophys. J. 839, id.46 (2017)
  5. Keek, L., Iwakiri, W., Serino, M., Ballantyne, D. R., in't Zand, J. J. M. & Strohmayer, T. E.:
    "X-Ray Reflection and an Exceptionally Long Thermonuclear Helium Burst from IGR J17062-6143",
    Astrophys. J. 836, id.111 (2017)
  6. Laplace, E., Mihara, T., Moritani, Y., Nakajima, M., Takagi, T., Makishima, K. & Santangelo, A.:
    "Possible regular phenomena in EXO 2030+375",
    Astron. Astrophys. 597, id. A124 (2017)
  7. Takagi, T., Mihara, T., Sugizaki, M., Makishima, K. & Morii, M.:
    "Application of the Ghosh & Lamb relation to the spin-up/down behavior in the X-ray binary pulsar 4U 1626-67"
    Publ. Astr. Soc. Japan 68, id.13 (2016)
  8. Kimura, M., Isogai, K., Kato, T., Ueda, Y., Nakahira, S., Shidatsu, M., Enoto, T. et al.:
    "Repetitive patterns in rapid optical variations in the nearby black-hole binary V404 Cygni"
    Nature 529, 54 (2016)
  9. Mihara, T., Nakajima, M., Sugizaki, M., Serino, M., Matsuoka, M., Kohama, M. et al.:
    "Gas Slit Camera (GSC) onboard MAXI on ISS"
    Publ. Astron. Soc. Japan 63S, 623 (2011)
  10. Matsuoka, M., et al.:
    "The MAXI Mission on the ISS: Science and Instruments for Monitoring All-Sky X-Ray Images"
    Publ. Astron. Soc. Japan 61, 999 (2009)

Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Kazuo Makishima
Team Leader

Core Members

Tatehiro Mihara
Senior Research Scientist
Mutsumi Sugizaki
Research Scientist
Wataru Iwakiri
Special Postdoctoral Researcher
Megumi Shidatsu
Special Postdoctoral Researcher
Shinya Nakashima
Special Postdoctoral Researcher
Satoshi Nakahira
Contract Researcher
Yusuke Takao
Student Trainee
Fumiaki Yatabe
Student Trainee
Kazumi Asai
Part-time Worker

Contact information

2-1 Hirosawa, Wako, Saitama 351-0198, Japan

Email: maxima [at]

Related links

Recent research results

April 7, 2017: RIKEN RESEARCH
Binary star caught in violent cycle
March 24, 2017: RIKEN RESEARCH
Solving the case of the missing x-rays