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PolyU’s new Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Lab joins Hai Robotics to introduce smart delivery system for fostering co-creation and innovation

4 Apr 2023

Teaching & Learning Industrial Centre

Prof. Wing-tak WONG, PolyU Deputy President and Provost (4th from left); Dr Miranda Lou, Executive Vice President (3rd from right); and Prof. Christopher CHAO, Vice President (Research and Innovation) (3rd from left) invited Mr Bing Fang, alumnus and Co-founder of Hai Robotics (4th from right) to discuss the company’s world-leading autonomous case-handling robotic system. They were joined by Dr WAI Hon-wah, Director of the Industrial Centre (2nd from left) and Associate Director Dr Robert TAM (1st from left); Mr Kelvin WONG, Director of the Knowledge Transfer and Entrepreneurship Office (1st from right); and Prof. LU Chao, Chair Professor of Fibre Optics at the Department of Electronic and Information Engineering (2nd from right).

Mr Kelvin Wong (right) moderated a sharing session with Mr Fang (centre) on his journey of co-founding a unicorn start-up, joined by Mr Fang’s teacher Prof. Lu.

The advanced Smart Delivery System jointly established by PolyU and Hai Robotics in the University’s new AIR Lab officially went into operation today.

The AIR Lab serves as a novel platform for promoting co-creation and innovation among teaching staff, young entrepreneurs and researchers from various disciplines.

Developed by PolyU, the Hybrid Immersive Virtual Environment, Hong Kong’s first large-scale X-Reality hybrid classroom, adopts fully immersive six-sided Cave Automatic Virtual Environment technology to significantly enhance both teaching flexibility and the learning experience.

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has been playing a pioneering role in driving innovation and technology (I&T) and knowledge transfer in Hong Kong, nurturing numerous I&T talents and continuously enhancing its curriculum and research facilities, in order to empower students for the Industry 4.0 era. Among these accomplishments, PolyU has fostered the development of unicorn start-up Hai Robotics, which has successfully commercialised its scientific research for global markets with its world-leading autonomous case-handling robotic system.

Joining hands with Hai Robotics, PolyU today officially launched the cutting-edge Smart Delivery System in its new Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Lab (AIR Lab) at the University’s Industrial Centre. The Smart Delivery System aims to strengthen PolyU’s robotics education and encourage co-creation and innovation among students and researchers.

Dr Miranda LOU, PolyU’s Executive Vice President, said, “PolyU places a strong emphasis on whole-person education as well as innovation and entrepreneurship, in order to nurture talents who meet the needs of society. Over the years, PolyU has been strengthening its PolyVentures start-up ecosystem, supporting PolyU academics, researchers, alumni and students in their entrepreneurial endeavours. The University has also provided all-round support to start-ups at different stages of their development, helping them to translate and commercialise their research outputs for the benefit of society. The collaboration between PolyU and Hai Robotics, supported by the company’s warehouse automation solutions, will not only accelerate the University’s future R&D but also empower students to acquire knowledge about the application of novel smart technologies.”

The AIR Lab is an innovative teaching and research platform, with a total area of 1,800 square metres. It is equipped with advanced robotic arms, robots, automatic guided vehicles, drones, as well as machine learning kits related to AI robotics and Industry 4.0. The Laboratory allows educators, students and researchers to explore various aspects of the emerging field of collaborative robotics, including application development, component fabrication, control system design, autonomous system development, and intelligent and AI algorithm design for robots.

The Smart Delivery System comprises three components: Hai Robotics’ Autonomous Case-handling Robot system, PolyU’s Autonomous Mobile Robots, and an enterprise resource planning software system. It will support researchers in developing various collaborative robot application technologies, and offer a communal logistics service for the Lab’s users, making the venue a living laboratory.

The AIR Lab currently houses 15 PolyU project teams that focus on the use of AI and robotic technologies in areas such as healthcare, rehabilitation, sports technology, engineering, energy, computing, and sustainability.

Hai Robotics was founded in 2016 by two graduates of the PolyU Department of Electronic and Information Engineering – Mr Richie CHEN, a 2012 graduate, and Mr Bing FANG, who graduated in 2014. The start-up has grown rapidly by capitalising on the manufacturing advantages of the Greater Bay Area (GBA) and the opportunities of the Mainland China market. It soon expanded its global presence, with a valuation that has now reached around US$2 billion. Mr Fang returned to his alma mater today to share his experiences and encourage young people to gain a sound understanding of the environment and the opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship in the GBA in order for them to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams.



Press Contacts

Ms Annie Wong

Manager, Communications and Public Affairs

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