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PhD Thesis Award


The Graduate School establishes the PhD Thesis Award to recognise, reward and promote the distinguished research achievements by graduating PhD students. There are two award classes, namely Outstanding and Merit, recognising students’ performance of different levels.

  • PolyU PhD Thesis Award - Outstanding Award
  • PolyU PhD Thesis Award - Merit Award

Outstanding Award

Overall, our study advances the current understanding of the spatiotemporal abundance, sources, and their impacts on the oxidative chemistry outside the polar region.
Faculty of Construction and Environment

Dr PENG Xiang

Thesis Title: Reactive Bromine and Chlorine Chemistry in the Polluted Region

- For contribution to atmospheric chemistry and air quality

Chief Supervisor: Prof. WANG Tao

Halogen atoms (Cl and Br) are highly reactive and can influence the budget of ozone and the fate of pollutants such as hydrocarbons and mercury. This study investigates the abundance, sources, and impact of reactive bromine and chlorine chemistry in the polluted region of China. This study suggested that widespread coal burning activity is an important anthropogenic source for reactive bromine species. Furthermore, HOBr can activate particulate chloride into BrCl, which can contribute to large bromine and chlorine atoms in the polluted region. The new chloride activation mechanisms for Cl2 and ClNO2 from the nitrate photolysis suggest a significant daytime chlorine source globally which can increase the atmospheric oxidation capacity. This study indicates that reactive bromine and chlorine may have larger roles in the chemistry and air quality of the polluted environment than previously thought.

Merit Award

I believe research should be realistic and make real social impacts. Thus, I would like to apply my PhD research to raise society's awareness and benefit the elderly population.
School of Design


Thesis Title: Initial Trust in AI Agent : Communicating Facial Anthropomorphic Trustworthiness for Social Robot Design

- For contribution to trust in emerging media and human-robot interaction

Chief Supervisor: Dr LUXIMON Yan

Similar to interpersonal interaction, trustworthiness towards a social robot is crucial in human-robot interaction since the social robot, in daily lives, usually acts as a “listener and responder”, providing not only practical assistance but also emotional support for humans. However, communicating trustworthiness for a social robot is still a challenging problem, and few studies have tried to address this issue in a comprehensive way. This thesis tries to fulfil this research gap by deliberately exploring the concept, structurally identifying significant features, examining, modelling the effects of static and dynamic features, and providing practical guidelines. This research is one of the cutting-edge scientific breakthroughs in AI-Human Communication, which not only sheds light on AI design but also explores the way people interact with AI.

Watch the interview with Dr Song here.

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