2023 BOCHK Sci-Tech Innovation Prize Won by PolyU Scholars

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Three scholars from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have been awarded the Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited (BOCHK) Science and Technology Innovation Prize 2023 (STIP) for their outstanding contributions in the fields of “Advanced Manufacturing” and “FinTech”. Three out of the six laureates this year are from PolyU, underscoring the University’s exceptional research capabilities in transformative technologies.

Prof. Jin-Guang Teng, PolyU President, congratulated the three laureates and said, “PolyU takes pride in being the home to a distinguished group of scholars. These exceptionally talented researchers are driven by their passion for scientific breakthroughs and innovation. They strive to develop cutting-edge technologies and make ground-breaking discoveries that contribute to the betterment of the community and will have a lasting impact on the world. PolyU remains committed to supporting its researchers in their pursuit of research that not only benefits Hong Kong, but also the country and the world.”

Three award-winning PolyU scholars:

Prof. CHEUNG Chi Fai Benny, Chair Professor of Ultra-precision Machining and Metrology of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering and Director of the State Key Laboratory of Ultra-precision Machining Technology (The Hong Kong Polytechnic University), is recognised in the “Advanced Manufacturing” field. His pioneering ultra-precision nano multi-ring machining technology has successfully been applied in the research and development of a novel and high-efficacy nano multi-ring defocus incorporated spectacle lens for myopia control, having the potential to benefit myopic schoolchildren globally. A novel magnetic field-assisted batch superfinishing technology and equipment have also been developed for mass superfinishing surgical tools that can reduce wound trauma during bio-medical applications.

His innovative research on the next generation of in-situ precision three-dimensional surface metrology not only supports precision manufacturing of high-precision products but also can be used under various manufacturing or measurement scenarios in the context of Industry 4.0 to realise smart precision manufacturing. Prof. Cheung has made outstanding contributions with his innovative research into new methods, new processes and new equipment for ultra-precision machining, precision metrology and smart precision manufacturing.

Prof. AU Man Ho Allen, Professor of the Department of Computing is recognised in the “FinTech” field. His ground-breaking research focuses on the design and analysis of privacy-enhancing and quantum-resistant cryptographic algorithms to address security, privacy and scalability needs in real-world blockchains. His research advances blockchain technology and spearheading the Web3 revolution through innovative approaches and transformative solutions, paving the way for secure, interoperable and scalable applications in the next generation of decentralised protocols and applications. Many of his inventions have been recognised and adopted by leading IT companies and blockchain platforms.

Prof. Au’s recent research on zero-knowledge proof (ZKP) has been noteworthy. ZKP is widely regarded as a breakthrough technology that enables data privacy protection, efficiency improvement and scalability of transparent systems such as blockchains. He developed innovative solutions that reduce the computation cost of ZKP. His team optimised ZKP using distributed computing and GPU acceleration, winning 550,000 USD from ZPRIZE organised by Web3 community.

Prof. LUO Xiapu Daniel, Professor of the Department of Computing, is also recognised in the “FinTech” field. His innovative work in the field of cybersecurity has been instrumental in identifying and fixing security vulnerabilities and defending against cyber-attacks that pose significant risks to critical infrastructures, including blockchain systems, smart contracts, smartphones, IoT devices and automobiles. His research findings have been recognised by prominent blockchain platforms and leading IT companies.

Prof. Luo contributes to strengthening the robustness of blockchain technologies, advancing the security and privacy of mobile and IoT devices and enhancing network security measures. His research has led to ten best/distinguished paper awards, including ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award in ISSTA 2022, ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award in ICSE 2021 and Best Paper Award in INFOCOM 2018, as well as several awards from industry.

The STIP, established by the Hong Kong Alliance of Technology and Innovation and sponsored by BOCHK, is a non-governmental merit-based award. It aims at facilitating the development of science and technology innovation in Hong Kong by rewarding outstanding individuals and groups who have made significant contributions to science and technology innovation in Hong Kong. A cash prize of HK$2 million will be awarded for each field.

Since the establishment of this award last year, PolyU has secured five out of the twelve award positions, making it the best-performed institution in Hong Kong, and recognising PolyU’s long-standing reputation in the areas of “Advanced Manufacturing”, “Life and Health” and “Fintech”. Last year’s winners were Prof. WANG Zuankai, Associate Vice President (Research and Innovation) and Chair Professor of Nature-Inspired Engineering in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Prof. ZHENG Yongping, Henry G. Leong Professor in Biomedical Engineering, Chair Professor of Biomedical Engineering, and Director of Research Institute for Smart Ageing.

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