e-Bulletin issue 75/January 2017
Polyu
Cover Story
Structural Health Monitoring System Wins National Award
A mega-structure diagnostic and prognostic system for the Guangzhou New TV Tower has won a 2016 State Scientific and Technological Progress Award (second-class) for its developers. The good news was announced by the National Office for Science and Technology Awards in Beijing. Led by Prof. Yi-qing Ni of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE), the research integrates the use of sensors, communications, signal processing, and structural analysis to provide comprehensive services related to structural health monitoring and structural maintenance. Not only can the system prevent disasters by locating structural atrophy and damage, it can also assess structural safety right after a disaster has taken place.

For 5 years, the system monitored the TV Tower during its construction and in-service phases. With 16 types of more than 700 advanced sensors to continuously monitor the environmental factors and behavior of the structure in real-time, the system has effectively guaranteed the structure・s safety and reduced its long-term operational and maintenance costs.

 
 
The structural health monitoring system at the TV Tower in Guangzhou

Research Achievements/ Activities
CEE Scholars Work With EPD on Noise-Reducing Paving Material
3 scholars from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) have been working with the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) of the Hong Kong government to test the feasibility of using a paving material made from recycled tires rubber asphalt to reduce traffic noise. The CEE researchers involved are Dr WT Hung, Dr Z Leng, and Dr LW Cheung, whose work with EPD not only ensures the rubber asphalt designs meet local needs, but also makes use of the latest technologies to effectively control and lower the temperature and smell of asphalt-paving, precluding any environmental problems that may come with it.

According to the EPD, based on the experiences of countries like Portugal, the Netherlands, and the US, where rubber asphalt has been used, the addition of a small number of recycled tires rubber beads weighing less than 2% in total to the asphalt, combined with an appropriate asphalt design, can reduce traffic noise by about 2 decibels without affecting the durability of the asphalt.

The use of rubber asphalt will be on trial in 2 areas of the New Territories, namely Shatin and Yuen Long, in the first quarter of 2017. In the long term, the authorities are considering building screens or paving with materials that do not create a lot of noise to facilitate noise reduction on roads with noise levels that exceed 70 decibels.

 
 
 

 
Events Reports
HKIE Accreditation Visit
On 17 January 2017, an accreditation exercise was held by the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers (HKIE) at the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE). The HKIE accreditation team, comprising a visiting team, an Assessor, the Sydney Accord Review Panel and the Secretariat, met with Prof. You-Lin Xu, Dean of FCE; Prof. Geoffrey Shen, Associate Dean in Teaching; Prof. Albert Chan, Head of the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE); Prof. Asif Usmani, Head of the Department of Building Services Engineering (BSE); Prof. William Lam, Head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE), and other leading academic staff to review 3 full-time Higher Diploma (HD) programmes, namely, the HD in Building Technology and Management (Engineering), the HD in Building Services Engineering, and the HD in Civil Engineering.

Following a combined session discussing strategic and generic issues, 3 parallel sessions were conducted, one for each of the programmes. At each session, all the academic staff involved in teaching the programme under review were in attendance, together with the respective department head.

The HKIE accreditation team collected views from external stakeholders, including representatives of the Advisory Board members, external examiners, and employers of the graduates. In addition to a review of student outcomes for accreditation purposes, as evidenced by assignments, projects, laboratory reports etc., there was a tour of the Industrial Centre, where training common to the 3 departments was demonstrated before specific training for students from different departments was presented in separate locations. Accreditation team members also had a chance to visit departmental facilities like laboratories. Other campus facilities such as the library and the English Language Centre were visited by Ir Prof. Richard Yuen, Chairman of the visiting team, and one member of the Secretariat.

To get a better picture of the students and graduates of the HD programmes, 3 recent graduates and 6 current students (3 from each year) of each programme were interviewed by the accreditation team. The full day of accreditation activities concluded with an executive summary session with the Dean, Associate Dean, department heads, programme leaders and other key staff.

 
The HKIE accreditation team with some leading academic staff of FCE

Going over the executive summary in the concluding session
RICS-University Annual Partnership Meeting

The Annual Partnership Meeting between the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and PolyU was held on 18 January 2017. It was attended by 4 representatives from RICS and several programme leaders from the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE). After a briefing by RICS on its current position and latest developments, PolyU responded with its own position, led by an overview from Prof. Geoffrey Shen, Associate Dean (Teaching). This was followed by reports from Dr Daniel Chan, Associate Head of the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE), Dr Lilian Pun, Associate Head of the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics (LSGI), and programme leaders concerned.

Subsequently, both sides reviewed course provision and course development, including an annual monitoring report, an external examiner・s report, threshold standards, research strategies, and the employability of graduates. They also reviewed their mutual aims and objectives, such as the development of collaborative programmes/ research in China, inclusion of relevant postgraduate level programmes, scholarships/ sponsorships etc.

The meeting concluded with the following 3 calls for proposals from the RICS Research Trust, which is a registered charity for the public benefit. The deadline is 30 March 2017. Details can be viewed at www.rics.org/researchtrust.

  1. Improving early cost advice for potential construction and infrastructure projects;
  2. Data, empowerment and the role of the future professional;
  3. Natural capital and land management transactions.

 
At the partnership meeting

Taught Postgraduate Info Day
An Info Day for the Postgraduate Scheme in Construction and Environment was held on 14 January 2017. Around 200 prospective students attended the overview by Prof. Geoffrey Shen, Associate Dean (Teaching). This was followed by separate introductions to the postgraduate programmes offered by the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE) and its 4 departments respectively. Altogether, 12 MSc/PgD programmes were introduced. The number of people attending these parallel sessions was almost 300.  
Prof. Shen giving an overview
 
Visit by Central University of Finance and Economics
A group of visitors led by Prof. Wenbin Li, Dean of the School of Management Science and Engineering and Professor in the Department of Real Estate Management at the Central University of Finance and Economics, visited the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE) on 9 January 2017. They were met by Prof. Geoffrey Shen, Associate Dean (Teaching) of FCE and Dr Patrick Fong, Associate Head (Partnership) of BRE. Possible collaborations in several teaching and learning areas were discussed, including the implementation of outcome-based education, the enhancement of student exchange between the two faculties, further collaboration in educational research and student learning under the one-belt one-road initiative.  
The visitors with Dr Fong (far left) and Prof. Shen (far right)
 
Indian Construction Company Visits FCE
On 11 January 2017, a few representatives of AFCONS Infrastructure Limited, the third largest construction company in India, visited the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE) to explore areas of mutual interest with respect to research and academic courses for staff development purposes. They were welcomed by Prof. You-Lin Xu, Dean of FCE, and Prof. Xiaoli Ding, Associate Dean (Partnership). It was a fruitful meeting for all concerned.

 
The visitors with their hosts
 
Visit to Brunei by LSGI
Representing the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-informatics, Prof. John Wenzhong Shi, Chair Professor and Head of Department, Dr Lilian Pun, Associate Head of Department and Dr Charles Wong, Higher Diploma Programme Leader, visited the Survey Department in Brunei and Brunei Institute of Geomatics on 9 January 2017. During the visit, they met with government officials of the Survey Department and Mr Pengiran Matusin Matasan, President of Brunei Institute of Geomatics in Brunei.

The visit focused on programme development of LSGI, partnership matters, and further opportunities for collaboration, particularly with aspect to education for prospective international students from the Survey Department in Brunei. Possibilities for providing training opportunities to the Survey Department in the future were also explored. The visit was successful in promoting international recognition of the FCE and LSGI.

 
The LSGI visitors with the Survey Department of the Brunei government
 
LSGI Visit to Singapore
Prof. John Wenzhong Shi, Chair Professor and Head of LSGI, Dr Lilian Pun, Associate Head, and Dr Bo Wu, MSc Programme Leader of the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics (LSGI), paid a visit to the National University of Singapore (NUS), the Singapore Land Authority, and the Singapore Polytechnic from 8 to 9 November 2016. In addition to promoting Geomatics education to students of the Singapore Polytechnic, they also heard from Dr Victor Khoo, Deputy Director of Land Survey, who shared developments on 3-D city projects by NUS and the government of Singapore.  
At the Singapore Polytechnic
 

Students of the Singapore Polytechnic
Staff News
BRE Academic Reappointed to CITB
Prof. Yat-Hung Chiang of the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE) has been reappointed to serve on the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) for two more years from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2018. The CITB was established under the Construction Industry Council Ordinance to develop the construction workforce through organizing training courses and conducting trade tests for assessing the skill level of construction personnel.

RTHK Broadcasts Housing Views of BRE Academic
In a radio broadcast on 21 January 2017 by RTHK, Prof. Eddie Hui of the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE) aired his views on the current housing market in Hong Kong, which is in a state of flux due to the likelihood of rising interest rates and increased risks. Even though the prospects for home ownership are not rosy in what has been deemed the city with the most unaffordable housing, Prof. Hui believes the government has laid a foundation to address the problem. As a former member of the Long Term Housing Strategy Steering Committee, he had a chance to recommend some of the strategies that the government has implemented in the last few years to enhance the land supply for housing. For the short term, one of the stamp duties for residential properties was raised to 15% to discourage foreign buyers, speculators, and investors. In the longer term, the government has plans to reclaim more land outside of Victoria Harbour, develop some caves, rebuild old districts, change the use of some land, and reuse former quarries etc.

According to Prof. Hui, finding new land for development to address the problem of land scarcity is also feasible. At the same time, to strike a balance between the economy and the environment, plants and animals that have high ecological value should be preserved when new lands are being developed. With respect to location, the government should choose convenient sites with a range of amenities in place for citizens to be able to live comfortably.

The broadcast concluded with a hope by Prof. Hui for students to enter the real estate profession with a deep understanding of the issues involved and propose some constructive plans to solve the housing problem. The full broadcast can be found at http://programme.rthk.hk/channel/radio/player_popup.php?pid=1085&eid=413818&d=2017-01-21&player=mp3&type=archive&channel=radio1#

New Academic Staff
The Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics (LSGI) has a new Chair Professor of Geographic Information Science under the Distinguished Chair Professor Scheme*. Michael F. Goodchild is Emeritus Professor of Geography at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), where he also holds the title of Research Professor. He also holds an affiliate appointment in the Department of Geography at the University of Washington. Until his retirement in June 2012 he was Jack and Laura Dangermond Professor of Geography, and Director of UCSB・s Center for Spatial Studies. He received his BA degree from Cambridge University in Physics in 1965 and his PhD in geography from McMaster University in 1969, and has received five honorary doctorates. He was elected member of the National Academy of Sciences and Foreign Member of the Royal Society of Canada in 2002, member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2006, and Foreign Member of the Royal Society and Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy in 2010; and in 2007 he received the Prix Vautrin Lud. He was editor of Geographical Analysis between 1987 and 1990 and editor of the Methods, Models, and Geographic Information Sciences section of the Annals of the Association of American Geographers from 2000 to 2006. He serves on the editorial boards of ten other journals and book series, and has published over 15 books and 500 articles. He was Chair of the National Research Council・s Mapping Science Committee from 1997 to 1999, and of the Advisory Committee on Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences of the National Science Foundation from 2008 to 2010. His research interests center on geographic information science, spatial analysis, and uncertainty in geographic data. His appointment is for 1 year from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2017 during which he will pay a maximum of 2 visits to PolyU and be in resident for a maximum of 3 weeks in aggregate.

*To boost research capabilities of the University, the Distinguished Chair Professor Scheme recruits leading scholars with a proven track record of research and links to Hong Kong or PolyU to lead large research programmes involving a group of academic colleagues to conduct advanced research of high application and impact. They are usually appointed by an advisory committee of the President to serve a term of 2 years, with about a 2-month stay at PolyU each year.

 
Prof. Goodchild
Student News
New Initiative for Service Learning by LSGI in Poverty-Stricken Hubei
During the winter term break in December 2016, a group of 35 students from the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics (LSGI) headed off to Wuhan, China, to engage in service-learning. Led by Prof. John Shi, Head of LSGI, the students worked with their counterparts from Wuhan University on a project to alleviate poverty within the LSGI service-learning framework of sustainable development in a rural area. They applied GIS techniques to help the villagers in Dawu, one of the poorest areas outside Wuhan in Hubei province, collect and organise information related to health and rural assets. They also arranged health care and orienteering workshops to facilitate the application of Geomatics skills by the local school children.

Highly appreciated by the village government, the service-learning project was deemed a great success, thanks to the generous support and donations from LSGI and some of its alumni.

LSGI students serving the school children LSGI students introducing themselves The school children with their LSGI benefactors Prof. Shi distributing gifts for the school children
Alumni News
Class of 1967 Visits BRE
On 5 January 2017, about a dozen alumni and some of their spouses from the Class of 1967 paid a visit to the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE) in celebration of their 50th anniversary since graduating from the former Building Department of the Hong Kong Technical College, one of PolyU・s predecessors. Led by Prof. Kenneth Pang, himself a member of the class, the alumni were mostly retired engineers, surveyors, and technicians. After a warm welcome from Prof. Albert Chan, Head of the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE), Prof. You-Lin Xu, Dean of the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE), gave a presentation on the recent development and achievements of FCE. This was followed by a briefing from Prof. Chan on the evolution of BRE from the past to the present. A video to commemorate PolyU・s 80th anniversary in 2017 with the theme of shaping the future was played for the visitors, who were presented with FCE photo frames and BRE anti-heat stress polo shirts as souvenirs. They were also given a tour of the Ng Wing Hong Laboratory for Sustainable City, a classroom and a lecture theatre. It was a memorable occasion for all of them.  
The visiting alumni with a few BRE staff
 

Prof Xu presenting the recent development and achievements of FCE
Programme Admission
Invitation for Programme Admission 2017/18
Applications are now invited for the following undergraduate and taught postgraduate programmes.

Undergraduate Programmes
Broad Discipline of Construction and Environment 愕]の泉航sx焦 #
BSc(Hons) in Building Engineering and Management 愎vu{の剤z焦(aA)z焦h焦
BSc(Hons) in Property Management ~剤z焦(aA)z焦h焦
BSc(Hons) in Surveying a横の愕]旗q焦(aA)z焦h焦
BEng(Hons) in Building Services Engineering 陸t]各u{焦(aA)u焦h焦
BEng(Hons) in Civil Engineering gれu{焦(aA)u焦h焦
BEng (Hons) in Environmental Engineering and Sustainable Development 泉航u{Pi挺oi焦(aA)u焦h焦
BSc(Hons) in Environmental and Occupational Safety and Health 泉航の他~wP扱d(aA)z焦h焦# *
BSc(Hons) in Geomatics (Land Surveying / Geo-Information Technology / Utility Management and Surveying) 旗淡のaz瑚T焦(aA)z焦h焦(ga旗q / az瑚T / 剤u]I旗淡P剤z)


#not applicable for international applicants
*a top-up degree programme for Associate Degree and Higher Diploma Graduates


Master of Science (MSc)/Postgraduate Diploma (PgD)

Building Services Engineering 陸t]各u{焦
Civil Engineering gれu{焦
Construction and Real Estate 愎vの丶a横焦
Construction Law and Dispute Resolution 愎vkの蝶狐M焦
Environmental Management and Engineering 泉航剤zのu{焦
Facility Management ]I剤z
Fire and Safety Engineering ┥のwu{焦
Geomatics (Geographic Information Systems) 旗淡のaz瑚T焦(az瑚T)
Geomatics (Surveying) 旗淡のaz瑚T焦(旗q)
High Performance Buildings 葵眺爻愎v
Project Management 教ヘ剤z
Sustainable Urban Development i挺哀oi焦


For details, please visit:
Undergraduate programmes- https://www.polyu.edu.hk/fce/programmes_degree_sub-degree.html

Taught postgraduate programmes- https://www.polyu.edu.hk/fce/postgrad-scheme/acad.html

For PolyU・s e-Prospectus, please visit https://www.polyu.edu.hk/study


FCE DISTINGUISHED LECTURE AND DISTINGUISHED CHAIR PROFESSOR INAUGURAL LECTURE SERIES

In celebration of the 80th Anniversary of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE) has launched the FCE Distinguished Lecture and Distinguished Chair Professor Inaugural Lecture Series. A total of ten lectures will be delivered in 2017 by distinguished scholars from different parts of the world and newly appointed Distinguished Chair Professors of PolyU. The lectures are generously sponsored by the FCE Alumni Associations. Details of the speakers are available at: https://www.polyu.edu.hk/fce/events/80_lectures/

The date and topic of each lecture will be announced in due course.
To download the poster, please click here

Forthcoming Events
FCE Distinguished Chair Professor Inaugural Lecture on :Designing Buildings to Better Resist Progressive Collapse;
Date: 21 January 2017
Time: 6:00 – 7:00pm
Venue: HJ304, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
FCE Distinguished Chair Professor Inaugural Lecture on :Technologies of Space and Place;
Date: 8 March 2017
Time: 6:00 – 7:00pm
Venue: Y301, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Research Open Day 2017
Topic: Environmental Engineering and Sustainable Development
Date: 25 March 2017
Venue: 2/F, Block Z, PolyU
International Youth Competition V World Sustainable Built Environment Conference 2017 HK
Date: 5-7 June 2017
Details: http://www.wsbe17hongkong.hk/iyc
International Summer School 2017
Dates: 10 June - 6 July and 15 July - 10 August
Venue: The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Details: https://www.polyu.edu.hk/summerschool/application.php
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