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PolyU launches Research Centre for Electric Vehicles advancing smart electric vehicle research to achieve carbon neutrality goals

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) hosted the “Launch Ceremony of Research Centre for Electric Vehicles cum Forum on Intelligent EV and Energy for Carbon Neutrality” on campus yesterday, in the presence of approximately 350 staff and students, together with leaders from government, innovation and technology, energy and academic sectors. The Research Centre for Electric Vehicles (RCEV) is led by its Director, Prof. C.C. CHAN, who is widely recognised as the “Father of Asian Electric Vehicles”, an Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and Distinguished Chair Professor of the PolyU Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. The Research Centre aims to develop a cutting-edge research platform to address energy and technical challenges presented by modern electric vehicles. Prof. SUN Dong, Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry, HKSAR Government; and Mr Neil Bush, Founder and Chair of the George H. W. Bush Foundation for U.S.-China Relations, delivered opening remarks. Together with Prof. Jin-Guang TENG, PolyU President and Prof. C.C. CHAN, RCEV Director, they congratulated the University on the establishment of the Centre. Prof. Sun Dong said, “The establishment of this new university-level research centre marks a significant step forward in guiding Hong Kong’s future direction to attain zero vehicular emissions. By addressing the technical challenges associated with modern electric vehicles, RCEV will provide critical technological solutions that will drive the development and adoption of EVs in Hong Kong and beyond. I am fully confident that RCEV will provide great stimulation to the industry through technological breakthrough.” Mr Neil Bush said, “As an electric vehicle driver for five years and a supporter of environmental protection, I congratulate The Hong Kong Polytechnic University on the establishment of the Electric Vehicle Research Centre. Just as the automobile revolution is deepening, the establishment of this centre will have far-reaching impacts. Electric vehicles are not only a means of transportation, they will promote smart transportation, smart energy, smart networks, smart cities, and smart societies. Prof. C.C. Chan’s recent book on ‘The Integration of Energy, Transportation, Information, and Humanities – The Renaissance of Digital Technology’ was published by top publisher Elsevier and laid down the foundation of theory and practice for sustainable development.” Prof. Jin-Guang Teng stated, “As a leading institution in research and innovation, PolyU has always been at the forefront of addressing societal challenges. The establishment of the Research Centre for Electric Vehicles serves to further our contribution to this important field. The work of the Research Centre will embrace electric vehicle technologies, intelligent transportation systems, and energy management.This holistic approach will result in enhanced energy efficiency, environmental benefits, and the creation of new business opportunities.” At the Launch Ceremony, Memorandums of Understanding were signed between the RCEV, and China Power International Development Limited and Wisdom Motor (HK) Limited respectively. These aim to initiate actions in line with the Hong Kong Innovation and Technology Development Blueprint and Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, so as to contribute to the development of the Hetao Shenzhen-Hong Kong Science and Technology Innovation Co-operation Zone and the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Modern Service Industry Cooperation Zone.   Witnessed by Prof. Jin-Guang Teng, PolyU President (1st from right, back row); Prof. C.C. Chan, RCEV Director (2nd from right, back row), Mr Ye Shuiqiu, Deputy Director-General, Department of Educational, Scientific and Technological Affairs, Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR (1st from left, back row); and Mr Chang FANG, Senior Manager, China Power International Development Limited (2nd from left, back row), an MoU was signed by Prof. Christopher Chao, PolyU Vice President (Research and Innovation) and Director of the Policy Research Centre for Innovation and Technology (right, front row) ; and Mr Weikang LIN, General Manager, China Power International Development Limited (left, front row).   Witnessed by Prof. Jin-Guang Teng, PolyU President (centre, back row); Prof. C.C. Chan, RCEV Director (right, back row), Dr Yufeng WAN, Director of Wisdom Motor and Partner at Templewater (left, back row), an MoU was signed by Prof. Christopher Chao, PolyU Vice President (Research and Innovation), and Director of the Policy Research Centre for Innovation and Technology (right, front row); and Mr Felix XU, Chief Strategy Officer and Global Treasurer, Wisdom Motor (left, front row).   As well as Prof. C.C. Chan, a number of distinguished guests delivered keynote speeches at the Forum. They were Mr Peter Major, Chair of the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development and Honorary Chairman of the World Digital Technology Academy; Prof. Yin-biao SHU, Immediate Past President of the International Electrotechnical Commission and President of Chinese Society for Electrical Engineering; Dr Gan SONG, Director of Advanced Technology R&D Department of BYD; Mr Joseph LAW, Managing Director of CLP Power Hong Kong; and Mr Eric PANG, Director of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, HKSAR Government. Prof. C.C. Chan emphasised that it is an opportune time to capitalise on the massive opportunities in electric vehicle research and education. The establishment of the RCEV is geared towards nurturing innovative electric vehicle talents to benefit the Greater Bay Area and the world, while enhancing collaborative efforts with enterprises in mainland China and Hong Kong. The Centre will focus on cutting-edge research on electric vehicles and the friendly interaction between electric vehicles, power grids and 5G networks. It is also set to develop a platform to foster industry-university-research collaboration, thereby catalysing the industrialisation of research outcomes that help achieve higher efficiency, security, reliability and intelligence in electric vehicle technologies. In his closing remarks at the Forum, Prof. Christopher CHAO, PolyU Vice President (Research and Innovation) and Director of the Policy Research Centre for Innovation and Technology (PReCIT), mentioned that PolyU has been paying strong attention to carbon neutrality and is leading in securing Green Tech Fund and Environment and Conservation Fund among all local institutions. PReCIT is pleased to co-organise the event and join the forum. It has also recently secured a Public Policy Research Fund to study hydrogen fuel cell vehicle and electric vehicle related policies. PolyU would continue to strive for excellence in education, research and knowledge dissemination, thereby making significant contributions to the progress of the Nation, while also journeying toward a more sustainable future and achievement of the goal of carbon neutrality.   Prof. Christopher Chao, PolyU Vice President (Research and Innovation), and Director of the Policy Research Centre for Innovation and Technology concluded that PolyU will make continued contributions on the journey toward a more sustainable future and achievement of the goal of carbon neutrality.   ***END***

27 Feb, 2024

Research & Innovation Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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PolyU launches International Summer School 2024 and Summer Institute 2024, offering diverse innovative courses and cultural exchange activities

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) will hold the International Summer School 2024 for undergraduate students and the Summer Institute 2024 for high school students from July to August this year. The latter accepts overseas applicants for the first time. Both summer programmes provide students from all over the world with the opportunity to experience PolyU’s quality education as a global top 100 university. In addition to university credit-bearing courses, a series of local tours and enrichment activities allow students to immerse themselves in Hong Kong’s vibrant and unique culture, while a “Buddy Programme” matching PolyU students with overseas participants helps foster intercultural communication among students from the global community. Summer School participants will be able to explore PolyU’s internationally renowned disciplines, with the offering of a five-week credit-bearing course from an array of intellectually stimulating subjects in three thematic areas, namely “Chinese Language, Culture and Society”, “Design, Innovation and Technology” and “Business, Entrepreneurship and Global Leadership”. The Department of Aeronautical and Aviation Engineering will, for the first time, offer a space exploration course in the Summer School, introducing a range of topics, from aerospace engineering fundamentals, such as propulsion and aerodynamics, to satellite engineering and launching vehicles, and further to space robotics and unmanned/crewed space missions. The School of Optometry and the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, both well-recognised in their respective industries, will offer courses providing an introduction to the two disciplines and their related professions. The School of Fashion and Textiles will launch a new course in smart wearables and smart living, providing students with the opportunity to explore the potential development and applications of these cutting-edge technologies. There will also be other courses in engaging topics such as traditional Chinese arts and crafts, Hong Kong’s multilingual society, artificial intelligence and science fiction, and the history and culture of the wine industry. The Summer School has been well-received since its first launch in 2016. LI Qing, a Mainland Chinese participant, applauded the enriching programme and said, “It enabled me to experience reflective thinking and teamwork, various classroom interactions and case studies, which are greatly beneficial to my future study and work.” DINNYÉS Máté Soma, a participant from Hungary, said, “The professionalism I experienced at PolyU and the people from diverse backgrounds I met here were experiences that will last a lifetime.” The PolyU International Summer School 2024 is now accepting undergraduate student applications from Mainland China, Taiwan and overseas until 31 March. For details and experience sharing from past participants, please visit: https://www.polyu.edu.hk/summerschool/ First launched last year, the Summer Institute will this year be extended to welcome overseas high school students, bringing together global youth to experience university life. The Summer Institute comprises a five-day, four-night residential camp, together with day-long attachment programmes organised by PolyU’s faculties and schools for students to learn more about their desired programmes. Local students will be able to get a taste of PolyU’s signature service-learning programme to help the community in need, while international students will join local tours of Hong Kong’s cultural landmarks. There will also be an optional one-week university credit-bearing course in “Innovation and Entrepreneurship”, a compulsory element in all PolyU undergraduate programmes. Students will be eligible to apply for credit transfer upon successful completion of the course and subsequent admission to the University. For the duration of the Summer Institute, students will be offered accommodation at a PolyU Student Hall, enabling them to enjoy the diversity and vitality of campus life, and expand their social network through interaction with the PolyU community. The PolyU Summer Institute 2024 is now open for high school student applications. The deadline for applications from Mainland China, Taiwan and overseas is 31 March, and for local applications is 31 May. For details, please visit: https://www.polyu.edu.hk/geo/si.   *** END ***

22 Feb, 2024

Events Global Engagement Office

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Designing Time: PolyU Design to kick off its 60th Anniversary Celebrations in March with “Designing Time” as the theme; Unveiling of celebration activities; Welcoming participants from all sectors to join the celebrations

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Design (“PolyU Design” or “the School”) has been an important hub for design education and research in Hong Kong, offering quality undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in design to nurture creative talent across a wide range of industries. The School is celebrating its 60th anniversary which features a series of compelling activities, including the highlighted activity “One to Ten Outstanding Alumni Exhibition”. The School will hold its 60th anniversary opening ceremony on 11 March, where there will be exciting announcements. We warmly welcome enthusiastic participation from all stakeholders to celebrate this milestone moment together. PolyU School of Design 60th Anniversary Celebrations revolves around the theme “Designing Time,” symbolising the integration of time into design. One hour in a space, whether it’s a home, a building, or an open piazza like the campus square, encapsulates the idea of designing experiences, moments, and interactions that inherently involve all our senses and cross all design disciplines. And over time, PolyU Design has nurtured thousands of design graduates over the past six decades. Their designs have changed the world, showcasing the transformative power of countless “hours” in their work. PolyU Design 60th Anniversary Exciting Activities Throughout the Year To celebrate the School’s 60th anniversary, the School will hold a series of exciting activities throughout 2024, including “New PolyU Design Identity Launch,” with the brand-new visual identity represents a new chapter for PolyU Design; “One to Ten Outstanding Alumni Exhibition” showcases the remarkable achievements of alumni in the field of design; “PolyU Design Show 2024” celebrates learning outcomes of PolyU Design students from different programmes at different levels including Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, which is a highly anticipated annual design exhibition; “Global Research in Design Innovation Exhibition” features design research projects with other leading design institutions around the world; “Time-capsuled Histories: Six Decades of PolyU Design” maps the 60-year history of PolyU Design, highlighting key milestones, achievements, and uncovering stories of school development and people; finally, the 60th Anniversary Gala brings together the PolyU Design’s community, media, and partners to commemorate the 60th anniversary and showcases strategic direction of PolyU Design. These activities will all showcase the growth and contributions of the School and ignite more creative sparks for the future. Bringing Together Outstanding Alumni to Promote the Power of Design and Showcasing Design Diversity Across Fields On the occasion of the 60th anniversary celebration of PolyU Design, the One to Ten Outstanding Alumni Exhibition will serve as a prominent highlight of the celebrations. This creative exhibition, themed “10 Forms (design diversity), 10 Transmissions (knowledge transmissions),” aims to explore the diversity and evolution of knowledge dissemination, rethinking the foundation of design. The exhibition highlights the variety of different design fields and the outstanding achievements of the 10 alumni in lighting design, product design, industrial design, architecture design, communication design, design management, automotive design, Chinese cultural design, and brand identity design. “One to Ten” provides a platform to showcase the alumni’s creativity, talent, and impact, as well as the School’s 60 years of excellence in education and academic accomplishments to a global audience. PolyU Design, one of the top 20 design schools globally, has gained international acclaim through its commitment to interdisciplinary education, robust research platforms, extensive global partnerships, and fostering an entrepreneurial spirit. This approach equips students to tackle complex, technology-integrated design challenges while staying at the forefront of innovation in Asia and beyond. The School offers world-class facilities, providing students and teachers with an excellent foundation to connect with the world and become leaders in their fields. Through their knowledge and mentorship, graduates ensure design continuity by passing on their expertise to the next generation. In celebration of its 60th anniversary, PolyU Design invites partners, friends and members of the public to join in commemorating its achievements and injecting transformative power into education and the design industry, thus preserving and transmitting design in various forms.   *** END ***

1 Feb, 2024

Events School of Design

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PolyU International Research Summer School attracts global talents to pursue research studies in Hong Kong

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) is now accepting applications for its “International Research Summer School”. Worldwide penultimate or final-year undergraduates and students in master’s degrees who aspire to pursue research studies are welcome to apply. The two-week PhD taster will be held from 1 to 13 July this summer to provide participants with the opportunity to explore the key and international aspects of studying PolyU PhD and MPhil programmes, while gaining insights into the global relevance and impact of PolyU’s research education and its support provided to international students. Tailored to the participants’ research interests, the Summer School will facilitate consultation sessions with distinguished PolyU scholars with global expertise from relevant academic departments. Professional advice will be given to the participants on their research postgraduate applications and research proposals. Participants will be open to diverse and interdisciplinary interactions through research workshops for acquiring practical research skills and refining research proposal presentation skills. There will also be face-to-face exchanges with current PolyU international research students to share study experiences and expand social networks. Apart from visiting the University’s world-class research facilities, the Summer School will, for the first time, incorporate experiential activities in Hong Kong, allowing participants to venture beyond the campus and immerse themselves in Hong Kong’s vibrant culture, society and economy. PolyU will subsidise the study visa application fees and provide free accommodation at the PolyU Student Hall for the duration of the Summer School. Upon completion, outstanding participants will be nominated for a preliminary offer of admission to PolyU’s research postgraduate programmes through the support of various international fellowship and scholarship schemes. A global top 100 university, PolyU offers nearly 50 internationally renowned PhD and MPhil programmes across nine faculities and schools and 25 departments. These programmes cover a wide range of disciplines including business, construction and environment, design, engineering, fashion and texitles, health and social sciences, hotel and tourism management, humanities and science, with the aims of inspiring innovative thinking, nurturing professional elites and creating a positive impact on society. PolyU hosts nearly 80 diverse research institutes, research centres and laboratories, including the largest interdisciplinary research platform in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area – the PolyU Academy for Interdisciplinary Research, which encompasses 18 research institutes and research centres. These institutes and centres specialise in a wide array of cutting-edge research fields, such as deep space exploration, artificial intelligence and robotics, advanced manufacturing, smart cities, carbon neutrality, life sciences and healthcare, and materials and sensing technology, offering research students extensive learning and career development opportunities. To learn more about the PolyU International Research Summer School, please visit https://polyu.hk/HWxyv.   ***END***

31 Jan, 2024

Events Graduate school

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11 PolyU projects secure RGC Collaborative Research Funding

11 projects from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has secured support from the Collaborative Research Fund (CRF) of the Research Grants Council (RGC) in 2023/24. Nine of them are funded from the Collaborative Research Project Grant (CRPG) and two projects from the Young Collaborative Research Grant (YCRG). Prof. Christopher CHAO, Vice President (Research and Innovation) of PolyU, said, “This outstanding result is encouraging and highlights PolyU's prowess in impactful research. The University is committed to providing outstanding and creative interdisciplinary research to support Hong Kong's innovation and technological development, as well as to nurturing young talented researchers in a mutually supportive, interdisciplinary, and forward-thinking research culture. We look forward to collaborating with various partners in supporting our future professional scientists.” The nine projects funded from the CRPG received total support of over HK$55.5 million, with this funding amount being the highest among local institutions. The projects embrace a number of leading areas, including edge artificial intelligence, artificial auditory systems, nanomaterials, cancer diagnosis, age-related metabolic disease, and construction and environment. The other two projects, funded from the YCRG, cover neural networking in psychology and behaviour and 6G-based sensing technologies respectively. The CRF supports multi-investigator, multi-disciplinary projects to encourage research groups to engage in creative and high-quality cross-disciplinary / cross-institutional projects. Under the CRF, the CRPG aims to enhance the research output of universities in terms of attainment level, quantity, dimensions and impact. The YCRG aims to support early-stage academic staff members in gaining first-hand experience in leading and managing collaborative research. For further information of these PolyU funded projects, please refer to the appendix. ***END***

29 Jan, 2024

Achievements Research and Innovation Office

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PolyU develops the first self-adaptive platform for tourism demand forecasts across the Greater Bay Area

Total international visitor arrivals to the Greater Bay Area (GBA) are forecasted to recover to the pre-pandemic level at close to 130 million by the end of 2024, and the total number of inbound visitor arrivals to Hong Kong to recover to the 2018 level of 65 million by 2025. These are some of the findings released by the School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM) of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) today at the launch of a new forecasting platform under the project entitled “The Development of an Automated and Self-Adaptive Tourism Demand Forecasting Platform for the Greater Bay Area (GBA-TDFP).” Led by Prof. Haiyan SONG, Principal Investigator and SHTM Associate Dean, Chair Professor and Mr and Mrs Chan Chak Fu Professor in International Tourism, the project adopts an interdisciplinary approach to integrate well-established theories in economics, tourism management and computer science to develop GBA-TDFP. It features key functions that include big data visualisation, market sensitivity analysis, short-, medium- and long-term forecasting, sentiment analysis, and interactive scenario forecasting, and will serve as a valuable tool for industry professionals, policy makers and academics to adapt and generate forecasts of visitor arrivals to the GBA in different economic scenarios. Tourism is considered a key industry in the GBA, with its sights set on becoming a world-leading destination by 2035. While the economy has now largely recovered from the shocks caused by travel restrictions and public health measures taken during the pandemic, there are still challenges to overcome, including labour shortage, supply constraints, changing economic conditions, and shifts in consumer behaviour. “It all points to the fact that in order to sustain ongoing recovery,” Prof. Song remarked, “accurate forecasts of tourism demand recovery are crucial for policy makers and practitioners to be able to develop sustainable tourism strategies that foster long-term economic growth in the region.” To facilitate accurate forecasting, the project has collected macroeconomic data such as GDPs, CPIs and exchange rates of the GBA cities and their key source markets from statistical departments and international organisations such as the International Monetary Fund. For short-term tourism demand forecasting, the project has leveraged big data collected from popular online and social media platforms such as Google, Ctrip and Baidu. Analysis reveals that: According to the short-term forecasting results, it is expected that there will be a significant rebound in inbound visitor arrivals to Hong Kong and Macao, by the end of 2024. Mainland Chinese cities within the GBA are projected to experience a substantial recovery in domestic visitor arrivals and visitor flows within the GBA, by the end of 2024. These projections suggest that the volume of visitors will reach levels comparable to those observed before the pandemic. The five-year-ahead long-term tourism demand forecasting results indicate that the total number of domestic and inbound visitor arrivals into the GBA, as well as visitor flows within the GBA, will return to the pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2024. By 2027, the GBA as a whole is expected to witness over 335 million domestic visitor arrivals, along with 195 million inbound visitor arrivals. Visitor flows within the GBA are projected to reach 200 million. In the GBA, visitor reviews overwhelmingly lean towards the positive side for all destinations. These encouraging reviews not only validate the robust recovery of the tourism industry in all GBA destinations but also signify the immense potential for further growth in the GBA tourism market. Meanwhile, moderate and negative reviews still point out critical areas for the destinations to further improve, including service quality and border control. Across all destinations, the monthly average satisfaction levels of visitors, as reflected by sentiment scores extracted from their reviews, are consistently positive. However, there are fluctuations in daily satisfaction levels, indicating that experiences may vary from day to day. There are also noticeable discrepancies in satisfaction levels across different tourism activities. Forecasting results for the GBA generated by the platform.   The GBA-TDFP serves to simplify the process for policy makers and industry leaders to conduct “what-if” scenario analyses on tourism demand forecasts. Users can input hypothetical values for determinant variables (such as GDP and price levels) through web browsers, which are then incorporated into the estimated econometric models to generate scenario forecasts. This functionality is deemed particularly valuable for policy evaluation and decision-making purposes. With advances in technology, destinations and visitors are increasingly dependent on information and communications technologies. By integrating cloud computing, big data and artificial intelligence techniques with advanced forecasting methods, the GBA-TDFP offers innovative insights and valuable guidance for both industry professionals and academics, effectively transforming vast amounts of data into actionable information, enabling stakeholders to make informed decisions and maximise the value derived from it. Prof. Kaye CHON, SHTM Dean, Chair Professor and Walter and Wendy Kwok Family Foundation Professor in International Hospitality Management, said, “This is another contribution that our School has made to the tourism industry. We are committed to bringing the results of cutting-edge research to business practice, thereby addressing the global challenges that the tourism industry faces.” About PolyU School of Hotel and Tourism Management For 45 years, the School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM) of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University has refined a distinctive vision of hospitality and tourism education and become a world-leading hotel and tourism school. Ranked No. 1 in the world in the “Hospitality and Tourism Management” category in ShanghaiRanking’s Global Ranking of Academic Subjects 2023 for the seventh consecutive year; placed No. 1 globally in the “Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services” category in the University Ranking by Academic Performance in 2022/2023 for six years in a row; rated No. 1 in the world in the “Hospitality, Leisure, Sport & Tourism” subject area by the CWUR Rankings by Subject 2017; and ranked No. 2 in the world among university based programmes in the “Hospitality and Leisure Management” subject area in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023 for the seventh consecutive year, the SHTM is a symbol of excellence in the field, exemplifying its motto of Leading Hospitality and Tourism. The School is driven by the need to serve its industry and academic communities through the advancement of education and dissemination of knowledge. With a strong international team of 90 faculty members from 20 countries and regions around the world, the SHTM offers programmes at levels ranging from undergraduate to doctoral degrees. Through Hotel ICON, the School’s groundbreaking teaching and research hotel and a vital aspect of its paradigm-shifting approach to hospitality and tourism education, the SHTM is advancing teaching, learning and research, and inspiring a new generation of passionate, pioneering professionals to take their positions as leaders in the hospitality and tourism industry. Website: https://www.polyu.edu.hk/shtm/   ***END***

25 Jan, 2024

Research & Innovation School of Hotel and Tourism Management

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PolyU develops high-efficiency carbon dioxide electroreduction system for reducing carbon footprint and progressing carbon neutrality goals

Global warming continues to pose a threat to human society and the ecological systems, and carbon dioxide accounts for the largest proportion of the greenhouse gases that dominate climate warming. To combat climate change and move towards the goal of carbon neutrality, researchers from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have developed a durable, highly selective and energy-efficient carbon dioxide (CO2) electroreduction system that can convert CO2 into ethylene for industrial purposes to provide an effective solution for reducing CO2 emissions. This research was recently published in Nature Energy and won a Gold Medal at the 48th International Exhibition of Inventions Geneva in Switzerland. Ethylene (C2H4) is one of the most in-demand chemicals globally and is mainly used in the manufacture of polymers such as polyethylene, which, in turn, can be used to make plastics and chemical fibres commonly used in daily life. However, it is still mostly obtained from petrochemical sources and the production process involves the creation of a very significant carbon footprint. Led by Prof. Daniel LAU, Chair Professor of Nanomaterials and Head of the Department of Applied Physics, the research team adopted the method of electrocatalytic CO2 reduction - using green electricity to convert carbon dioxide into ethylene, providing a more environmentally friendly alternative and stable ethylene production. The research team is working to promote this emerging technology to bring it closer to mass production, closing the carbon loop and ultimately achieving carbon neutrality. Prof. Lau’s innovation is to dispense with the alkali-metal electrolyte and use pure water as a metal-free anolyte to prevent carbonate formation and salt deposition. The research team denotes their design the APMA system, where A stands for anion-exchange membrane (AEM), P represents the proton-exchange membrane (PEM), and MA indicates the resulting membrane assembly. When an alkali-metal-free cell stack containing the APMA and a copper electrocatalyst was constructed, it produced ethylene with a high specificity of 50%. It was also able to operate for over 1,000 hours at an industrial-level current of 10A – a very significant increase in lifespan over existing systems, meaning the system can be easily expanded to an industrial scale. Further tests showed that the formation of carbonates and salts was suppressed, while there was no loss of CO2 or electrolyte. This is crucial, as previous cells using bipolar membranes instead of APMA suffered from electrolyte loss due to the diffusion of alkali-metal ions from the anolyte. The formation of hydrogen in competition with ethylene, another problem affecting earlier systems that used acidic cathode environments, was also minimised. Another key feature of the process is the specialised electrocatalyst. Copper is used to catalyse a wide range of reactions across the chemical industry. However, the specific catalyst used by the research team took advantage of some distinctive features. The millions of nano-scale copper spheres had richly textured surfaces, with steps, stacking faults and grain boundaries. These “defects” – relative to an ideal metal structure – provided a favourable environment for the reaction to proceed. Prof. Lau said, “We will work on further improvements to enhance the product selectivity and seek for collaboration opportunities with the industry. It is clear that this APMA cell design underpins a transition to green production of ethylene and other valuable chemicals and can contribute to reducing carbon emissions and achieving the goal of carbon neutrality.” This innovative PolyU project was a collaboration with researchers from the University of Oxford, the National Synchrotron Radiation Research Centre of Taiwan and Jiangsu University.   ***END***

22 Jan, 2024

Research & Innovation Department of Applied Physics

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PolyU Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Mongolian National University of Medical Sciences sign MoU to establish first collaboration with a Mongolian tertiary institution

The Department of Rehabilitation Sciences of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the Department of Physical and Occupational Therapy of the School of Nursing of the Mongolian National University of Medical Sciences (MNUMS) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 15 January 2024, to strengthen the collaboration of both parties and signify an important step forward in contributing to the Nation’s Belt and Road Initiative. Prof. Kwok-yin WONG, Vice President (Education) of PolyU said in his welcome speech, “We are pleased to announce that the Mongolian National University of Medical Sciences is the first tertiary institution in Mongolia to collaborate with PolyU. We extend our sincere gratitude to the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences for their efforts in forging connections between the University and Mongolia.” PolyU initiated exchanges with MNUMS last April. Subsequently, the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences sent a delegation comprising 16 faculty members and students to participate in the inaugural Mongolian International Conference on Occupational Therapy last June. The MoU signifies formal collaboration between the two institutions, enhancing international academic collaboration and exchanges. It will also provide valuable opportunities for faculty members and students from PolyU Department of Rehabilitation Sciences to broaden their horizons and gain greater international exposure. Backed by its 45-year history in rehabilitation sciences, the Department has shared its knowledge and extensive experience in rehabilitation with their Mongolian counterparts, benefiting the local community and its people. The initial project under this collaboration involves establishing the first Assistive Technology Rehabilitation and Education Centre at MNUMS. Prof. Hector TSANG, Chair Professor of Rehabilitation Sciences, Head of the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, and Interim Director of the PolyU Mental Health Research Centre said, “The Assistive Technology Rehabilitation and Education Centre will be Mongolia’s first advanced assistive technology training centre, equipped with a range of advanced equipment, including 3D scanning and printing equipment for rehabilitation, and eye-tracking systems for augmentative and alternative communication. It will play a critical role in advancing training of local rehabilitation professionals and in empowering people with disabilities to be self-reliant. Our team of experts will spare no effort in sharing their expertise and work closely with rehabilitation therapists in Mongolia.” This partnership has paved the way for student exchanges and research collaborations with other Belt and Road countries and regions. PolyU is confident in expanding and deepening its cooperation with MNUMS in the future and looks forward to establishing closer ties with other universities in the region.   ***END***

18 Jan, 2024

Events Department of Rehabilitation Sciences

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PolyU’s cutting-edge technologies enrich colours on over 100 million high-end smart devices worldwide

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has recently developed a series of colour management technologies that enable digital displays and imaging devices, such as light-emitting diode (LED) and organic light-emitting diode (OLED) lighting systems, smartphones, cameras, as well as extended reality (XR, covering virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR)) headsets, to capture and reproduce colours more faithfully, thereby enhancing the user experience. These cutting-edge technologies have been successfully commercialised and widely adopted by social media, imaging systems and manufacturers of LED lighting products, smartphones and drones. Over 100 million high-end smart devices worldwide each year have been powered by the technologies. New technologies like OLED and Quantum-dot LED (QLED) have much narrower spectral compositions, making cameras and displays more and more difficult to capture and produce consistent colour appearance. This has presented unprecedented challenges in colour management for digital devices. Prof. Tommy Minchen WEI, Professor of the Department of Building Environment and Energy Engineering and Director of the Colour Imaging and Metaverse Research Centre at PolyU, along with his research team, has developed the following colour management technologies: A six-channel RGBACL (Red, Green, Blue, Amber, Cyan and Lime) lighting module and control algorithm enhances the colour presentation of LED lighting systems. The algorithm for tuning the colour appearance of human face skin allows quick adjustment when captured by different cameras. This technology has been used by a famous manufacturer of cinema lighting fixtures and in the production of several Hollywood movies and TV series. Various solutions capture and display colours on video and image shooting equipment, encompassing the implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) technology to detect human faces in the frame and to optimise the colour appearance of skin tone. Chips with AI-powered white balance algorithm built-in ensure more faithful colours in photos and videos taken by digital cameras under different environment. These technologies have been adopted by world-class smartphone and XR device manufacturers. Other, related technologies include: Colour processing for images dominated by a single colour in telephoto and macro shooting Colour tuning during image processing Colour capture and reproduction of high dynamic range (HDR) scenes Ensured colour consistency of displays used in various devices A self-adjusting colour algorithm for mixed reality headsets   Prof. Tommy Minchen Wei said: “As more and more users embrace the metaverse, hyper-realistic digital realms have presented us with radically new ways to work, play and connect. Colour is an integral part of the metaverse experience. By developing cutting-edge algorithms and AI-powered solutions, I hope we can help content creators deliver the exact colours that they want users to see and allow users to immerse themselves in a more lifelike virtual world.” Prof. Wei has made significant contributions to scientific research in the field of colour science and has been awarded funding by various prestigious organisations. These include the Research Grants Council’s Research Impact Fund and General Research Fund, the National Natural Science Foundation of China’s 2022 Excellent Young Scientists Fund (Hong Kong and Macao) from, and the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department in Hong Kong. For his exceptional research accomplishments, he has received numerous awards, including the Google Research Scholar Award, the 2022 PolyU Young Innovative Researcher Award and 2022 PolyU President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement in Knowledge Transfer. To accelerate the translation of research outcomes and create significant community impact, Prof. Wei last year co-founded Guardian Glow Limited. The startup focuses on the development of personalised AI smart devices (including for health monitoring) and solutions for key technologies used in XR headsets. Guardian Glow has successfully attracted financial support from various venture capital funds, as well as from angel and private investors to further develop its user experience enhancing colour management technologies.   ***END***

17 Jan, 2024

Research & Innovation Department of Building Environment and Energy Engine

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PolyU team wins distinguished award at QS Reimagine Education Awards 2023 by integrating technologies in teaching and learning

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) places a strong focus on technology in education and is committed to driving initiatives on teaching and learning innovations by developing interactive pedagogies. A cross-departmental PolyU team has won a Silver Award in the Asia Region at the QS Reimagine Awards 2023 with the project “Immersive Learning on the Run: Student-Staff Partnership for Technology-Facilitated Ubiquitous Learning”. PolyU is the only institution in Hong Kong to have won the Regional Award for Asia across all categories. The team was led by Dr Rodney CHU, Senior Lecturer of the Department of Applied Social Sciences, and included members from the Department and the Educational Development Centre. Last year, the team adopted an innovative Cave-cum-Studio Device into the PolyU General University Requirements subject “From Gloom to Bloom: Global New Urbanism”. With the provision of an immersive virtual environment and digital production studio, and the embedding of a student-staff partnership approach, students and teachers are empowered to co-design teaching and learning content and method that is tailored to students’ needs and interests. For instance, they have co-created videos spanning topics relating to intangible cultural heritage, urban landmarks, suburbs and markets, and then showcased them on HiVE at the University’s Industrial Centre, the first large-scale X-Reality hybrid classroom in Hong Kong. This approach allows students to assess sustainable development goals and enhances their learning experience. Dr Rodney Chu is honoured to have received this prestigious award, and said, “The advancement of technology has accelerated the digital transformation of various industries. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks for PolyU’s support and the efforts of our team members in fostering teaching innovation in class. Our award-winning project encourages students to understand local district development socially, economically and environmentally by leveraging the power of technology. It also helps teachers embrace interaction and participation in the teaching process, brings innovation to drive teaching and learning, and strengthens the competitiveness of our students. These features were key to enabling the team to stand out in the QS Reimagine Awards.” Known as the Oscars in the education sector, the Reimagine Education Awards are a global contest co-organised by Quacquarelli Symonds, compiler of the QS World University Rankings, and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. The Awards aim to reward institutions of higher education that have created and implemented outstanding new approaches to teaching and learning. This year, there were more than 1,200 applications from all over the world.   ***END***

15 Jan, 2024

Achievements Department of Applied Social Sciences

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