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Department and Staff News

2013-07-11
Professor Wallace Leung elected Fellow of ASME

Professor Wallace W.F. Leung, Chair Professor of Innovative Products & Technologies of Department of Mechanical Engineering, has recently been elected a Fellow of American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). With his outstanding engineering achievements, The ASME Board of Governors confers the Fellow grade of membership to Prof. Leung who is presently one of 3,205 Fellows out of 117,504 ASME members.  Nominated by their peers, ASME Fellows should have at least 10 years of active practice and at least 10 years of active corporate membership in ASME.

Prof. Leung started his industrial career in US after graduating with ScD in Mechanical Engineering from MIT in 1981. His first appointment was with Gulf R&D, PA working on numerical simulation of flow problems related to the petroleum industry. From there he went on to develop new techniques to measure pressure transient in Schlumberger, TX and to work on process technologies in Baker-Hughes/Bird Machine Co., MA. He rose through the ranks to become Director of Process Technology in 1994 concentrating on R&D of centrifugal separation. During his busy schedule, he managed to write an authoritative book Industrial Centrifugation Technology published by McGraw-Hill 1998, which made him well-known in the separation community. In 2004, Prof. Leung founded AdvanTech in MA and served as its Founding President until 2005. In AdvanTech, Prof. Leung concentrated on the development of centrifuge and its application to separation technologies. The foundation of his second book Centrifugal Separation in Biotechnology published by Academic Press, Oxford, 2007 was essentially laid during this period of time. The different centrifugal technologies he developed can be applied to continuous-feed centrifuge, to centrifugal separation for chemical industry, and to centrifugal separation for biopharmaceutical industry. The type of industries Prof. Leung served is wide and embraced a broad range of industrial applications. This gives him a wealth of valuable knowledge that serves him and his students well when he later decided to join the ranks of the academic in 2005. Prof. Leung is a successful industrial engineer; during his career in the period 1981-2005, he was able to secure 35 plus US patents on various processing techniques and equipment, as well as on feed control and monitoring.

He joined HK PolyU in 2005. Prof. Leung proved to be a natural-born lecturer because his teaching at HK PolyU attracted a lot of students who are eager to learn about new technologies in the products design area and new direction in mechanical engineering. The courses he taught in Mechanical Engineering include Pollution Control and the Environment, Heat Transfer in Gas Turbines, Combustion Systems, Air Conditioning, and Fluids Engineering. Even though Prof. Leung was Director of the Research Institute of Innovative Products and Technologies for six years, he still found time to supervise Master and Doctorate students and managed to have one MPhil and two PhD graduates complete their studies on time during the period 2005 to 2011. Currently, he is supervising four PhD students working on various topics, ranging from microfluidic flow to nanofiber-based solar cell, air filters, photocatalyst for gas and water purification to nanofiber for application in tissue engineering. This is a remarkable achievement for Prof. Leung given the short tenure he has spent in the academic community.

In the span of 32 years since receiving his ScD, Prof. Leung has published 48 papers in reputable international journals of sciences and engineering. Simultaneously, 41 of his patent applications to the US Patent Office were successful and 8 more were still pending. This combination of archival journal publications and US patents is a true indication of the applied nature of Prof. Leung’s research. As a result, his two books were widely used by practitioners and researchers in the field of centrifuges and separation technologies. His research was funded by both industries and government agencies in the US and HKSAR.

Prof. Leung’s accomplishments 32 years after his ScD are very substantial. They covered three broad domain, teaching, research and industrial application; a combination rarely achieved by a conventional academic or by a practicing engineer. Furthermore, he rendered his service to US and Canadian industries and the HKSAR government, as well as professional societies, such as the American Filtration Society. He is recognized as a distinguished educator, researcher, and engineer.