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HKSAR government officials and LegCo Members gather at PolyU for friendly futsal match; Chief Executive officiates at the match to cheer for the Hong Kong, China delegation to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games

The HKSAR Government Football Team and the Legislative Council Football Team organised a friendly indoor futsal match at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University Sports Centre today. The Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), Mr John LEE, and the President of the Legislative Council, Hon. Andrew LEUNG Kwan-yuen, officiated at the friendly match and cheered for the Hong Kong, China Delegation to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. PolyU Acting President, Prof. Wing-tak WONG, and Executive Vice President, Dr Miranda LOU, extended a warm welcome to the Chief Executive. Joined by HKSAR government officials and Members of the Legislative Council (LegCo), they chanted the slogan “Stand shoulder to shoulder in support of the Hong Kong team and cheer for Hong Kong athletes” to cheer on the Hong Kong team and wish the Hong Kong athletes every success in the upcoming competitions. PolyU Council Chairman Dr LAM Tai Fai, President Prof. Jin-Guang TENG, and hundreds of PolyU faculty members and students participating in the service-learning programme in Rwanda, Africa, extended their congratulations on the success of the match. Dr Lam Tai-fai stated: “We warmly welcome Members of LegCo and HKSAR government officials to get together at PolyU for a friendly match that not only sharpens their futsal skills but also demonstrates team spirit. We believe that this game will contribute to fostering constructive and interactive relationships between the executive and the legislature. Additionally, I extend my best wishes for the success of the Hong Kong team in this year’s Olympic Games. Following their worthy performance in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, I am sure they will continue to strive for even greater success at the Paris Olympic Games and bring glory to Hong Kong.” Hon. Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen expressed his sincere gratitude to PolyU for providing the match venue and deploying professional staff to offer full assistance. He also commended the University for its warm hospitality and meticulous arrangements, as well as for working closely with the HKSAR government and the LegCo Secretariat, which contributed to the success of the match.    ***END***

20 Jul, 2024

Events Communications and Public Affairs Office


Two PolyU projects awarded RGC Theme-based Research Scheme Funding for sustainable impacts

Two research projects led by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have won over HK$100 million funding from the Research Grants Council’s Theme-based Research Scheme 2024/25 to advance emerging research and innovations important to Hong Kong . PolyU has secured this substantial funding support for its impactful inter-disciplinary research, contributing to Hong Kong’s sustainable development. Prof. TAO, Xiaoming, Vincent and Lily Woo Professor in Textile Technology, Chair Professor of Textile Technology of the School of Fashion and Textiles and Director of the Research Institute for Intelligent Wearable Systems, leads the project “Mechanisms and Key Technologies of Multi-Sensory Emulation Wearable Devices,” which has been awarded funding of HK$62.37 million. Prof. Johan Hoorn, Professor of the School of Design and Department of Computing, leads the project “Social Robots with Embedded Large Language Models Releasing Stress among the Hong Kong Population,” which has received funding of HK$40.89 million. Prof. Christopher CHAO, Vice President (Research and Innovation) of PolyU, said, “Fully demonstrating the University's exceptional interdisciplinary research capabilities, these PolyU projects have wide-ranging application potential and bring tangible benefits to society. PolyU has consistently performed excellently in the Theme-based Research Scheme, supporting our efforts to make important contributions to Hong Kong's long-term development. We will continue to expand innovative and cutting-edge research that enhances wellbeing and leads to a brighter future.” Prof. TAO’s project aims to lead global research in multi-sensory emulation wearable devices, capitalising on PolyU’s exceptional multidisciplinary expertise and facilities in flexible materials, sensors and actuators for the Internet of Things (IoT), wearable and biomedical applications, electronic fabrics, mathematics for artificial intelligence, acoustics and signal processing. This research has far-reaching impacts that extend beyond the development of novel fibre-based multi-sensory emulation wearable devices. Ultimately, it also contributes to diverse social and industrial fields, encompassing healthcare, IoT, smart cities, art technology, robotics, education, sports, fashion and textiles, and personal protection. Prof. Hoorn’s project is undertaken to provide psychological support for Hong Kong people, of whom it is estimated 61% experience stress, anxiety, depression or negative moods. It utilises Embedded Large Language Models to train social robots, incorporating localised cultural and personal data. The research aims to bring personalised mental care to individuals who may otherwise be overlooked by the formal medical care system. In addition to the development of social robots and avatars for mobile applications connected to the new HK AI-hub, the project will also develop a new software architecture for distributed computing, scalability and privacy protection. The innovation will benefit the working population of Hong Kong, care professionals, social workers, and AI and robotics developers. It is also planned to establish an online platform for developers of robot and avatar solutions, with a focus on the care domain, as well as also catering to other fields including education, hospitality and entertainment.   PolyU projects funded by the Theme-based Research Scheme 2024/25 Project Coordinator Prof. Tao Xiaoming Vincent and Lily Woo Professor in Textile Technology Chair Professor of Textile Technology of the School of Fashion and Textiles Director of the Research Institute for Intelligent Wearable Systems Project Title Mechanisms and Key Technologies of Multi-Sensory Emulation Wearable Devices (MSEWDs) Abstract This project aims to emulate the less enhanced yet urgently needed sensations of touch (tactile) and smell (olfactory) through a study of multi-sensory emulation wearable devices (MSEWDs) that reveals their operational mechanisms, and to develop relevant key technologies and applications. First-of-its-kind emulation mechanisms based on fibrous structures and their bionic actuation devices will be developed for delivering mixed scents and tactile sensations. Leveraging AI models to link measured signals obtained by biosensors and algorithms for controlling the bionic emulation devices will offer more immersive experiences.   The target of the MSEWDs include: A device that senses and simulates olfactory sensation by AI-controlled scent-making and dispersion of mixed scents; A fabric tactile emulator that senses and tunes reactive forces and temperature by changing its rigidity, dimension, surface morphology and thermoelectric properties; and A wearable fabric-based acoustic stethoscope that continuously detects the location and intensity of sound generated from human internal organs.   This project has great potential to fundamentally alter metaverse technology and influence industrial fields as diverse as healthcare, IoT, art technology, robotics, sports, fashion, textiles and beyond. Approved Budget* HKD 62.378 million   Project Coordinator Prof. Johan Hoorn Professor of the School of Design and Department of Computing Project Title Social Robots with Embedded Large Language Models Releasing Stress among the Hong Kong Population Abstract This project will develop human-like at-home social robots with embedded large language models, using localised cultural and personal data to provide customised mental health support for the mentally under-served population in Hong Kong. Complementary on-screen avatars for mobile applications will also be delivered. A new software architecture will enable distributed computing, scalability and privacy protection. Training protocols, logic-symbolic AI and design guidelines will be created for novel methods and functionality, evaluated in situ by local communities. This will inform a communication model capable of predicting and recognising signs of stress or low mood and intervening with empathetic dialogue, help-seeking information or professional care referrals.   The long-term goal is to reduce the burden on Hong Kong's formal mental health system while empowering citizens to better self-manage their well-being through accessible AI-driven social support.   The working population, especially care professionals and social workers, stand to benefit, alongside an established online platform for AI and robotics developers in the care domain and open to other fields including education, hospitality, and entertainment. Approved Budget* HKD 40.899 million *RGC provides 90% of the approved budget and the remaining 10% will be provided by the coordinating University.   ***END***

15 Jul, 2024

Achievements Knowledge Transfer and Entrepreneurship Office


PolyU scholar conferred as RGC Senior Research Fellow, spearheading circular economy for global sustainable goal

Rigorous research is crucial to drive the development of the circular economy (CE) for global sustainable production and consumption. In pursuit of this research goal to meet societal needs, Prof. Christina WONG, Professor of the School of Fashion and Textiles and Director of Research and Innovation of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has been awarded by the Research Grants Council’s (RGC) Senior Research Fellow Scheme (SFRS) with a total grant of approximately HK$8 million. Prof. Wong has been granted the title of “RGC Senior Research Fellow.” Her research project aims to enhance CE governance and promote its institutionalisation and performance impacts. The CE represents a model of production and consumption in which products and materials are cycled back into the economy until the end of their useful life, thereby reducing global material extraction. However, only 7.2% of global resources that enter the market are recovered and recycled annually, according to the Circularity Gap Report published at the World Economic Forum in 2023. Despite governments’ efforts in setting action plans and policies on the CE, collective industrial efforts are essential for monitoring and controlling waste and resource efficiency. Considering the knowledge gap on CE governance and its benefits, the research addresses this challenge by demonstrating how different business conditions affect CE governance performance and subsequently driving the establishment of CE governance. Prof. Wong said, “Receiving this funding award greatly encourages my research in sustainable goal concerning responsible consumption and production. The exceptional capacity, academic and research expertise, specialised facilities, and interdisciplinary resources at PolyU have extensively supported our research, empowering us to generate profound societal impacts.” The SRFS aims to provide sustained support to exceptionally outstanding researchers at the UGC-funded universities in Hong Kong. The supporting university receives a fellowship grant of around HK$8 million per award, over a period of 60 months. Research detail: Project Coordinator Prof. Christina Wong Professor of the School of Fashion and Textiles Director of Research and Innovation Office Project Title Beyond Regulatory Exertion: Circular Economy Governance, and its Institutionalization and Performance Impacts Abstract This project aims to deepen the understanding of Circular Economy (CE) governance and guidelines, promoting the adoption and production of recyclable material products among value chain partners. By demonstrating how various business environment conditions affect CE governance performance and the resulting business outcomes, this project will provide managerial and policy insights, encouraging corporates compliance with governance rules related to product design, production, and end-of-life treatment, ultimately practising environmental responsibility, reducing waste, and avoiding the use of virgin resources. In the long run, these efforts collectively contribute to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 12 (SDG 12).   ***END***

11 Jul, 2024

Achievements Research and Innovation Office


PolyU unveils the PolyU-Nanjing Technology and Innovation Research Institute and establishes the PolyU Jiangsu Alumni Network

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the Gulou District of Nanjing Municipal People’s Government held an unveiling ceremony on 6 July in Nanjing, to mark the official establishment of the PolyU-Nanjing Technology and Innovation Research Institute (the Research Institute). The Research Institute’s goal is to leverage PolyU’s research resources to promote bilateral exchanges in education, science and technology, and talent between Hong Kong and Nanjing. The aim is to create a top-quality, domestic and international strategic technology innovation platform. This platform will facilitate project implementation, incubation and industrialisation. Ms HAN Liming, Member of the Standing Committee of CPC Jiangsu Provincial Committee and Secretary of CPC Nanjing Committee, has been deeply involved in this collaboration and has had in-depth discussions with Dr LAM Tai-fai, Council Chairman of PolyU, regarding the Research Institute’s development. Ms Han Liming (right), Member of the Standing Committee of CPC Jiangsu Provincial Committee and Secretary of CPC Nanjing Committee, has been deeply involved in this collaboration and has had in-depth discussions with Dr Lam Tai-fai (left), Council Chairman of PolyU. The unveiling ceremony, signifying the official establishment of the Research Institute in Nanjing, was witnessed by Dr Lam Tai-fai, Council Chairman of PolyU; Prof. Jin-Guang TENG, President of PolyU; Dr Miranda LOU, Executive Vice President of PolyU; Prof. Christopher CHAO, Vice President (Research and Innovation) of PolyU; Prof. ZHANG Dan, Director of the PolyU-Nanjing Technology and Innovation Research Institute; Mr CHEN Zhichang, Deputy Secretary of CPC Nanjing Committee and Mayor of Nanjing; Mr Xu Guanghui, Director of the Jiangsu Provincial Department of Science and Technology; Mr WU Wei, Vice Mayor of Nanjing; Mr. HONG Lilai, Secretary-General of Nanjing; and Mr WANG Anwei, Secretary of the Gulou District Committee. In his speech, Dr Lam Tai-fai highlighted that PolyU has nurtured nearly 500,000 alumni over the past 87 years and is currently ranked 57th in the QS World University Rankings. The University will collaborate with enterprises and the government in the Nanjing region to fully leverage the strengths of both Nanjing and Hong Kong, promote technological innovation, and foster the deep integration of government, industry, academia and research, providing strong support for local economic and social development. PolyU hopes the Research Institute will become a globally influential technology innovation incubation base, injecting new momentum into Nanjing’s scientific research development and contributing to the Nation’s technological innovation. Mr Chen Zhichang, Deputy Secretary of the Nanjing Municipal Committee and Mayor, stated in his speech that the establishment of the Research Institute signifies the alignment of PolyU and the Nanjing Municipal People’s Government and their goals in pursuing technological innovation. With complementary research strengths, both parties aim to achieve mutual benefits and win-win results. Adhering to a spirit of innovative thinking, the Research Institute will explore strategic emerging industries and advances in fields such as the next generation of artificial intelligence. Mr Wang Anwei, Secretary of the Gulou District Committee, emphasised in his speech that General Secretary Xi Jinping highlighted at the National Science and Technology Conference and the National Science and Technology Awards Conference that technological innovation is crucial to implementing Chinese-style modernisation. The establishment of the Research Institute will help Jiangsu build new quality productive forces and implement the directions laid out in important speeches of General Secretary Xi Jinping. Gulou District will actively integrate the educational resources, research facilities of local universities, research institutions and enterprises to provide support for the Research Institute and offer various government services and talent services. Representatives of the Research Institute gave presentations focusing on research areas that included artificial intelligence, life and health, green construction and the environment, as well as introducing the Institute’s overall development direction and construction plans to government representatives, and guests from other research institutions and enterprises. The Institute will set up four research centres: “Intelligent Robotics and Mechatronics Research Centre”, “Artificial Intelligence and IoT Innovation Research Centre”, “Intelligent Construction Research Centre”, and “Vision Health Innovation Research Centre”. These Centres will collaborate deeply with the Gulou District Government, providing cutting-edge technology innovation research and development services to enterprises and research institutions, and thus aiming to transform Nanjing into a world-class smart city and promote technological innovation in these fields. Additionally, to strengthen the deep integration of technological and industrial innovation, promote new industries, new business models, and explore new development opportunities, the Research Institute signed multiple framework agreements with 13 partners, including Nanjing Port Group Co., Ltd, the Affiliated Eye Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, and the Department of Computer Science and Technology at Nanjing University. Following the Research Centre unveiling ceremony and to celebrate the establishment of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University Jiangsu Alumni Network, PolyU held an inaugural celebration and dinner. Over 300 guests gathered to share this joyous moment. The establishment of the Jiangsu Alumni Network reinforces the strength of the PolyU mainland alumni network and its aim of promoting mainland alumni activities and enabling the University to participate more actively in national development. ***END***

11 Jul, 2024

Events Knowledge Transfer and Entrepreneurship Office

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PolyU researchers develop intelligent activewear for a dry and comfortable experience

The Paris 2024 Summer Olympic Games are just around the corner and a global sports frenzy is underway. However, intense summer workouts often lead to sportswear absorbing excessive sweat, becoming clingy and cumbersome, causing discomfort and potentially impacting performance. A research team from the School of Fashion and Textiles at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has developed the iActive™ sportswear range which features a root-like liquid transport system and a skin-like active perspiration dissipater and utilises nature-inspired, anti-heat textile fabrics to expedite sweat removal, effectively reducing the weight and stickiness of activewear caused by sweat accumulation during exercise. The human body has millions of sweat glands that are vital for regulating body temperature by dissipating sweat for evaporation to cool the skin’s surface. With unabating greenhouse gas emissions, the number of very hot days annually is expected to increase significantly. This will lead to elevated energy consumption and increased sweating during physical activity and outdoor labour. Even when wearing highly breathable clothes with good sweat-wicking properties, individuals may still experience discomfort due to excessive sweat accumulation. A research team led by Dr SHOU Dahua, Limin Endowed Young Scholar in Advanced Textiles Technologies and Associate Professor of the School of Fashion and Textiles at PolyU, has invented the groundbreaking iActive™, intelligent, electrically activated sportswear with a nature-inspired active perspiration function. This pioneering innovation has garnered significant recognition, including a Gold Medal at the 49th International Exhibition of Inventions Geneva this April. Its nature-inspired technologies, including low-voltage-driven artificial “sweat glands” created by skin-like anti-heat textile fabrics and a root-like branching liquid transport system that aligns with the body’s sweat map, can actively and programmably transport sweat to a perspiration dissipater at the lower region of the sportswear, and quickly remove it as liquid droplets. The all-textile sweat dissipater is compact and operates at a safe output voltage of approximately 5-9V, and its battery is easy to detach from the clothing, making it convenient for users to repeatedly wash the clothing by hand or in a washing machine to maintain hygiene. When the human body’s sweat rate is low, iActive™ can still be used independently without the battery. Based on the optimised wettability pattern and gradient, the research team utilises a skin-like textile fabric to transport sweat one-way quickly and dissipate it directionally from the inside to the outside. This feature reduces the stickiness and weight of clothing, improves breathability and ensures the garments remain dry and comfortable to wear. Experimental findings indicate that iActive™ creates a breathable and dry skin microclimate by dissipating sweat at a rate that is three times faster than the maximum human sweating rate. This innovation can also prevent discomfort from coldness and moisture after a workout. In comparison to traditional fabrics, the textile materials in iActive™ are 60% lighter and 50% less clingy when soaked, providing the wearer with all-round comfort and enabling sports enthusiasts and athletes to perform at their best. Furthermore, a mobile app further aids personalised sweat management by wirelessly adjusting the sweat level of iActive™. This innovation is versatile and can be seamlessly integrated into a variety of textile materials to facilitate sustainable mass production. Beyond sportswear, iActive™ is also well-suited to protective clothing and workwear for individuals engaged in prolonged, high-intensity physical labour and outdoor occupations, including healthcare professionals, construction workers, firefighters, law enforcement officers and others, thereby significantly enhancing their work performance. Dr Shou Dahua stated, “The extreme weather and high temperatures resulting from global warming have elevated the importance of heatstroke prevention and cooling measures on a global scale. Drawing on the vivid phenomena of thermal insulation and directed liquid flow in nature, we aim to foster innovation and sustainable advancement in garment manufacturing by inventing intelligent clothing and materials to address global challenges. We seek to harness the power of technology to infuse fresh perspectives into the traditional clothing industry, thereby enhancing its competitiveness.” His research team has also developed a premium fabric named Omni-Cool-Dry™, drawing inspiration from volcano dwelling beetles. This fabric not only provides ultra-fast sweat dissipation and ensures all-day comfort with its dry and breathable features under dynamic thermal conditions, but also reflects solar radiation and emits body heat into the cold universe, enabling passive cooling. The team is working hard to leverage the benefits of both inventions to further enhance the sweat-dissipating and cooling capability of iActive™ sportswear. Dr Shou Dahua, a core member of the PolyU Research Institute for Intelligent Wearable Systems and the Research Centre of Textiles for Future Fashion, has recently been bestowed with the 2023 Distinguished Achievement Award by The Fiber Society for his outstanding contributions to the fields of personal thermal and moisture management, intelligent wearables and soft robotics. The accolade is presented annually to an individual researcher worldwide. He has also received international innovation awards, including consecutive TechConnect Global Innovation Awards in 2021 and 2022. Moreover, his research papers have been published in various internationally renowned academic journals including Science Advances, PNAS, Advanced Functional Materials, and Advanced Energy Materials. Dr Shou will be chairing The Fiber Society Spring 2025 Conference at PolyU. ***END***  

10 Jul, 2024

Research & Innovation School of Fashion and Textiles


PolyU secures funding support from the General Research Fund and Early Career Scheme for academic and research merits

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has received a total funding support of HK$207.8 million from the General Research Fund (GRF) and the Early Career Scheme (ECS), marking it as the top three universities in terms of total granted amounts. A total of 203 PolyU projects have been awarded grants amounting to HK$185.7 million from the GRF, positioning it as the third-highest ranked university in terms of granted amounts. In the field of engineering, PolyU stands out among universities by securing the largest amount of funding support, reaching HK$93.5 million. The GRF aims to supplement universities’ own research support to researchers who have achieved or have the potential to achieve excellence. It covers two areas of research focused on broad knowledge enhancement and specific purposes. A total of 34 PolyU projects have been funded, amounting to HK$22.1 million from the ECS, positioning it as the second-highest ranked university in terms of granted amounts. In the field of engineering, PolyU ranks at the top among universities, receiving the largest amount of funding support at HK$10.3 million. The ECS aims to nurture junior academics and to prepare them for a career in education and research. Scientific and scholarly merit, and qualification and track record of the principal investigator are among the assessment criteria.   ***END***

5 Jul, 2024

Achievements Research and Innovation Office

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PolyU contributes to Nation’s Chang’e-6 historic lunar far-side sampling mission and acquires Chang’e-5 lunar soil samples; Leading deep space exploration research

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) research team, after developing and manufacturing the “Surface Sampling and Packing System”, has assisted the Nation in completing the world’s first lunar far-side sampling for the Chang’e-6 lunar exploration mission. PolyU also recently obtained approval for the lending of lunar soil samples collected by the Chang’e-5 mission from the Lunar Sample Management Office under the China National Space Administration’s Lunar Exploration and Space Engineering Centre. The PolyU research team has obtained two distinct lunar soil samples: a surface soil sample weighing 400 milligrams, which was collected by PolyU’s Surface Sampling and Packing System; and a subsurface soil sample totalling 42.6 milligrams. The samples are currently stored in the lunar regolith storage and analysis system on the PolyU campus which is a unique state-of-the-art integrated multifunctional system for in-situ analysis, enabling researchers to conduct a comprehensive study on the lunar regolith without the need for leaving the storage environment. Dr LAM Tai-fai, Council Chairman of PolyU, congratulated the team for marking a magnificent chapter in the Nation’s aerospace history and said, “This year, PolyU is celebrating its 30th anniversary as a University. In the recently announced Quacquarelli Symonds World University Rankings for 2025, PolyU has reached new heights and ranked 57th globally. In addition to achieving this significant milestone, PolyU has successfully obtained approval from the Nation and acquired lunar soil samples collected by the Chang’e-5 mission. The PolyU team will treasure this incredibly precious gift.” Prof. Jin-Guang TENG, President of PolyU, said, “PolyU is committed to becoming an innovative, world-class university, highlighting the pivotal role of scientific research in driving innovation and positively impacting society. We focus on nurturing young scientific research talents and passing on research experience from one generation to the next. We will continue to collaborate with interdisciplinary experts and contribute to the Nation’s development towards becoming a major player in deep space exploration and scientific innovation.” The Chang’e-5 lunar sample in-depth analysis and research programme is spearheaded by a PolyU team with extensive experience in deep space explorations, led by Prof. YUNG Kai-leung, Sir Sze-yuen Chung Professor in Precision Engineering, Chair Professor of Precision Engineering and Associate Head of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, and Director of the Research Centre for Deep Space Explorations (RCDSE), and Prof. WU Bo, Fiona Cheung Professor in Spatial Science, Associate Head of the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics and Associate Director of RCDSE. The research team, which also includes Dr Wang Xing, Postdoctoral Fellow of the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics, and Dr Sergey Krasilnikov, Research Assistant Professor of the same department, will delve into “Finding Water in Lunar Soil” through a microstructural analysis of lunar regolith, including its water content and formation process. Their findings will shed insights into the formation of soil on the Moon’s surface and other celestial bodies, as well as lunar water resources induced by solar wind implantation. Prof. Wu Bo said, “We are glad that our team has successfully applied for and received lunar soil samples from the National Astronomical Observatories in Beijing and brought them back to the PolyU campus for further analysis. The samples will provide valuable scientific insights. Our interdisciplinary team has extensive experience in space missions and our research embraces areas that encompass lunar geological research, topographic and geomorphological analysis of landing sites, development and manufacturing of space payloads, in-depth analysis of lunar soil samples, and space resource utilisation. We look forward to leveraging our research strengths to make further valuable contributions to innovation and technology development in Hong Kong and the Nation.” Prof. Yung Kai-leung noted, “The fact that our team designed and manufactured the Surface Sampling and Packing System for the 2020 Chang’e-5 probe, and brought back the youngest lunar samples yet discovered to Earth, which are now being stored on our campus, holds special meaning for our team. We also plan to apply for lunar samples from the Moon’s far side brought back to Earth by Chang’e-6 in order to make further contributions to humanity’s understanding of the Moon and outer space. With the return of the Mars samples and China’s manned lunar landing ranking high among its scientific priorities through 2030, we look forward to continuing to contribute to the Nation in the years ahead.” The lunar soil samples are rare and scientifically valuable, holding immense potential for pioneering scientific discoveries and future utilisation of lunar resources. A single grain of lunar soil may hold the key to unlocking the mysteries of the Moon’s formation, evolution, and dynamic environment. The achievements from lunar sample research can also bring long-term benefits to Earth and benefit humanity. As space exploration evolves, with space resource utilisation now emerging as a priority for future programmes, the Space Resources Laboratory at PolyU’s RCDSE has developed resilient capabilities to store and analyse extraterrestrial samples in high-purity nitrogen protection devices for long-term interdisciplinary research. With a vision for the future, the Laboratory is well poised to handle samples from Mars and asteroids, laying the groundwork for the Nation’s further aerospace development.   Led by Prof. Yung Kai-leung (centre) and Prof. Wu Bo (left), both seasoned experts in deep space exploration initiatives, the Chang’e-5 lunar soil analysis research has brought together a distinguished team, including Dr Wang Xing (right), to pioneer research on water trapped in lunar soil.   Prof. Wu Bo (left) and Dr Wang Xing (right) of the Department of Land Surveying and Geoinformatics bring together decades of combined research experience in lunar geology, and landing area mapping and analysis.       PolyU has successfully acquired lunar soil samples collected by China’s Chang’e-5 mission, including a 400 mg surface sample (left) and a 42.6 mg deep drill sample (right).The Space Resources Laboratory of the PolyU Deep Space Exploration Research Center has set up a lunar regolith storage and analysis system to properly store and analyse the lunar soil in depth.   The Space Resources Laboratory of the PolyU Deep Space Exploration Research Center has set up a lunar regolith storage and analysis system to properly store and analyse the lunar soil in depth.   ***END***  

3 Jul, 2024

Achievements Research Centre for Deep Space Explorations


PolyU study reveals the mechanism of bio-inspired control of liquid flow, enlightening breakthroughs in fluid dynamics and nature-inspired materials technologies

The more we discover about the natural world, the more we find that nature is the greatest engineer. Past research believed that liquids can only be transported in fixed direction on species with specific liquid communication properties and cannot switch the transport direction. Recently, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) researchers have shown that an African plant controls water movement in a previously unknown way – and this could inspire breakthroughs in a range of technologies in fluid dynamics and nature-inspired materials, including applications that require multistep and repeated reactions, such as microassays, medical diagnosis and solar desalination etc. The study has been recently published in the international academic journal Science. Liquid transport is an unsung miracle of nature. Tall trees, for example, have to lift huge amounts of water every day from their roots to their highest leaves, which they accomplish in perfect silence. Some lizards and plants channel water through capillaries. In the desert, where making the most of scarce moisture is vital, some beetles can capture fog-borne water and direct it along their backs using a chemical gradient. Scientists have long sought to hone humankind’s ability to move liquids directionally. Applications as diverse as microfluidics, water harvesting, and heat transfer depend on the efficient directional transport of water, or other fluids, at small or large scales. While the above species provide nature-based inspiration, they are limited to moving liquids in a single direction. A research team led by Prof. WANG Liqiu, Otto Poon Charitable Foundation Professor in Smart and Sustainable Energy, Chair Professor of Thermal-Fluid and Energy Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering of PolyU, has discovered that the succulent plant Crassula muscosa, native to Namibia and South Africa, can transport liquid in selected directions. Together with colleagues from the University of Hong Kong and Shandong University, the PolyU researchers noticed that when two separate shoots of the plant were infused with the same liquids, the liquids were transported in opposite directions. In one case, the liquid travelled exclusively towards the tip, whereas the other shoot directed the flow straight to the plant root. Given the arid but foggy conditions in which C. muscosa lives, the ability to trap water and transport it in selected directions is a lifeline for the plant. As the shoots were held horizontally, gravity can be ruled out as the cause of the selective direction of transport. Instead, the plant’s special properties stem from the tiny leaves packed onto its shoots. Also known as “fins”, they have a unique profile, with a swept-back body (resembling a shark’s fin) tapering to a narrow ending that points to the tip of the plant. The asymmetry of this shape is the secret to C. muscosa’s selective directional liquid transport. It all has to do with manipulating the meniscus – the curved surface on top of a liquid. Specifically, the key lies in subtle differences between the fin shapes on different shoots. When the rows of fins bend sharply towards the tip, the liquid on the shoot also flows in that direction. However, on a shoot whose fins – although still pointing at the tip – have a more upward profile, the direction of movement is instead to the root. The flow direction depends on the angles between the shoot body and the two sides of the fin, as these control the forces exerted on droplets by the meniscus – blocking flow in one direction and sending it in the other. Armed with this understanding of how the plant directs liquid flow, the team created an artificial mimic. Dubbed CMIAs, for ‘C. muscosa-inspired arrays’, these 3D-printed fins act like the tilted leaves of C. muscosa, controlling the orientation of liquid flow. Cleverly, while the fins on a natural plant shoot are immobile, the use of a magnetic material for artificial CMIAs allows them to be reoriented at will. Simply by applying a magnetic field, the liquid flow through a CMIA can be reversed. This opens up the possibility of liquid transport along dynamically changing paths in industrial and laboratory settings. Alternatively, flow could be redirected by changing the spacing between fins. Numerous areas of technology stand to benefit from CMIAs. Prof. Wang said, “There are foresee applications of real-time directional control of fluid flow in microfluidics, chemical synthesis, and biomedical diagnostics. The biology-mimicking CMIA design could also be used not just for transporting liquids but for mixing them, for example in a T-shaped valve. The method is suited to a range of chemicals and overcomes the heating problem found in some other microfluidic technologies.”   ***END***  

2 Jul, 2024

Research & Innovation Department of Mechanical Engineering

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PolyU holds flag-raising ceremony to celebrate 27th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) today held a flag-raising ceremony on campus to celebrate the 27th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administration Region (HKSAR). The University is honoured to have had Mr DENG Jianwei, Director-General of the Bureau of Liaison, Office for Safeguarding National Security of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR and Mr WANG Jian, Director (Counselor) of the Department of International Organisations and Conferences, Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the HKSAR officiate at the ceremony. They were joined by PolyU President Prof. Jin-Guang TENG, Deputy Council Chairman Dr Lawrence LI Kwok-chang, University Court Chairman Dr Katherine NGAN, together with Council and Court members, University senior management, University Fellows, Outstanding Alumni, members of the PolyU Foundation, and around 600 distinguished guests, staff, students and alumni, wishing the Nation and Hong Kong prosperity and stability. The ceremony was jointly conducted by the Guo Qi Hu Wei Dui and the PolyU Student Flag-Raising Team. Prof. Jin-Guang Teng remarked, “Over the past 27 years since the establishment of the HKSAR, with staunch support from the Nation and its own distinctive advantages, Hong Kong has grown from strength to strength. It has also actively integrated into the overall national development. As a member of Hong Kong’s higher-education sector, PolyU is dedicated to becoming an innovative world-class university and provides the best holistic education to nurture socially responsible talents who possess a strong sense of national pride and a global perspective. We will also continue to pursue impactful research and innovation to meet societal needs, contributing to Hong Kong’s development into an international innovation and technology hub and advancing national technological self-reliance.”   ***END***

1 Jul, 2024

Events Communications and Public Affairs Office


PolyU and AELIS Couture forge innovative partnership for Fall/Winter 2024/25 Couture Collection

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) is excited to announce its partnership with the esteemed Paris fashion house AELIS Couture (AELIS) for the Fall/Winter 2024/25 Couture Collection that was showcased during the haute couture week in Paris on 27 June 2024. Created by the legendary haute couture designer Sofia Crociani, the Collection introduces sustainable metal-coated textiles developed by PolyU, blending cutting-edge technology with luxury fashion. This innovative textile technology was developed by the research team led by Prof. Kinor JIANG, Professor of the School of Fashion Textiles at PolyU, using developed metallising technology to place ultra-thin, nano-scale metal films onto textiles. Without discharging any polluted water or chemicals, the non-aqueous process results in textiles that are not only visually stunning but also sustainable. For this collection, the PolyU team created a precious gold and silver coated sustainable silk organza with a metallic pearly sheen while maintaining the comfort and flexibility of traditional textiles. The collaboration with AELIS, renowned for its artful designs and sustainable approach to fashion, reflects PolyU’s commitment to advancing textile technology and its applications in the fashion industry. The integration of PolyU’s metal-coated textiles into AELIS Couture’s designs reveals a collection that embodies both style and state-of-the-art technology. Prof. Christopher Chao, Vice President (Research and Innovation) of PolyU said, “We are thrilled to partner with AELIS for their Fall/Winter 2024/25 Couture Collection. The collaboration with AELIS Couture is a shining example of how PolyU’s research can be translated into real-world applications, bridging the gap between technology and artistry in fashion. We are proud to see our sustainable innovations contribute to the creation of couture that is as technologically advanced as it is beautiful.” Sofia Crociani, Founder of AELIS, expressed her excitement at the partnership, “For AELIS Couture, the project with PolyU, born after a cycle of ‘sustainable lectures’ jointly organised by PolyU and the French Consulate in Hong Kong, is the result of a wonderful effort to advance in the ecological and technological research field. Working with PolyU has been an inspiring journey. Their precious metal-coated textiles have allowed us to explore new dimensions of design and sustainability. We are proud to present a collection that reflects the synergy between PolyU’s technological expertise and our commitment to eco-conscious couture.” Through this international collaboration, PolyU joins hands with AELIS to make a bold statement in the fashion world, showcasing the potential of merging sustainability with luxury art-to-wear. The AELIS Fall/Winter 2024/25 Couture Fashion Show that took place during the “haute couture week” in Paris represents an event where innovation meets grace and elegance, setting a new standard for the future of couture.   ***END***

28 Jun, 2024

Research & Innovation Research and Innovation Office

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