Inaugural Exhibition

Engineering for Better Living

Engineering for Better Living is the theme of the inaugural exhibition. Twelve cutting-edge engineering research projects led by Professors in the Faculty of Engineering are exhibited in the Tam Wing Fan Innovation Wing Two. These projects address both local and global situations and are categorized into topics of InnoHK, COVID-19, Emerging Technology and Gerontology respectively. From the videos and displays, visitors will be equipped with knowledge of rationales underlying these projects and their methodologies to achieve the goal of creating a better living environment. Further through interactive prototypes and functional exhibits, visitors will get even more detailed knowledge about how these research ideas have been translated into reality.

Research Highlight

Biofilm Inhibition in Oral Pathogens by Nanodiamonds​

Complex microbial communities, e.g., biofilms residing in our oral cavity, have recognized clinical significance, as they are typically the main cause for infections. Diamond nanoparticles, namely, nanodiamonds (NDs) have been demonstrated to work as an effective antibacterial agent against planktonic cells (free-floating state) due to their many promising physico-chemical properties. However, little is known about the behaviors of NDs against biofilms (sessile state).

InnoHK

Digitisation of Human Body Motion for Garment Production

Garment production is a laborious process that relies primarily on manual operations. Smart robots are set to play a vital role in future automations and assist human workers with repetitive and/or high-risk tasks. To achieve interactive human-robot collaborations, robots need to learn and understand how humans work and thus a cost-effective means of digitising manual operations is of the essence. In this project, we aim at developing an innovative approach to high-fidelity, real-time full-body motion capture for garment workers without using specialty cameras.

Detection and Diagnostics of Airborne Viruses

A lot of diseases can be transmitted via airborne agents, such as viruses spreading through droplets. The concentrations of these airborne agents are usually too low in the environment and it has created difficulties for the current detection instruments available in the market. We aim to fill this gap by developing new technologies to enhance detection and diagnostics of airborne viruses.

Gerontology

A Smart Walker for the Elderly System for Elderly Care

This project aims to develop a set of technologies to achieve convenient-to-use mobility support for the elderly. Our walker has three fundamental functionalities that do not exist or not well supported by (smart) walkers in the market: smart walking assistance; falling prevention and support; autonomous mobility.

HINCare: An Intelligent Timebanking System for Elderly Care

More than 30% of the population in Hong Kong will have an age of 65 or more by 2037. It is important to encourage more helpers, who can be elders themselves, to help others voluntarily. This will not only alleviate the shortage of helpers required for elderly care services, but also enables “healthy ageing” and establishes a “mutual-help” culture.

COVID-19

Unravelling How SARS-CoV-2 Has Been Transmitted

How is the emerging new SARS-CoV-Z transmitted? This has been one of the major challenges for effective intervention since the COVlD-19 pandemic emerged in late 2019.
Following our continuous environmental studies of infection since 2003 SARS epidemics, our team immediately explored our long-held hypothesis that short-range inhalation transmission might predominate the spread of most respiratory infection.

Sewage Surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 Virus

The sewage testing tool for SARS-CoV-Z virus was invented by an inter-disciplinary team led by Professor Tong Zhang, from the Environmental Microbiome Engineering and Biotechnology Laboratory of the Department of Civil Engineering of the Faculty of Engineering.

Multifunctional Filters for Protecting Public Health

Clean water and clean air are vital for public health. This project focuses on developing high-efficiency and environmentally sustainable filters for removing harmful air/water pollutants. The team has developed novel architectures and functionalities for the filters to achieve high permeance, high removal efficiency, and excellent reusability.

Light-controlled Contamination-free Fluidic Processor

The fluidic processor resembles a “magic” optical hand that can navigate, fuse, pinch, and cleave fluids in lossfree manner. Fluid placed on the device beads up like a marble and readily rolls without residue. By illuminating laser on the platform, a wavy force field is generated, acting as an invisible hand to touch and manipulate fluid.

Emerging Technology

Anti-COVID-19 stainless steel

Stainless steel (SS) is one of the most extensively used materials in public areas and hygiene facilities but has no inherent antimicrobial properties. Additionally, SARS-CoV-2 exhibits strong stability on regular SS surfaces, with viable viruses detected even after three days. This has created a high possibility of virus transmission among people using these areas and facilities.

Intelligent Mobile Robots for UVC based Disinfection

Current surface disinfection methods include spraying chemicals or using UV light. However, it is difficult to directly spray liquid chemicals on surfaces due to the threat of negative environmental impacts and possible damage and contamination to various surfaces such as books and food packages. Currently, UV based disinfection lights are either wall mounted or operate on mobile bases. Moreover, they are often positioned metres away from surfaces that require disinfection.

Industry 4.0 Cases for Smart Manufacturing, Logistics, and Construction

The housing shortage is a well-recognized challenge in Hong Kong. To meet the huge and growing needs, productivity and on-time delivery facilitated by modern building technology and decision support platforms in housing projects are crucial. Besides, e-commerce has grown very fast recently. Professor Huang’s team developed cyber-physical systems including both hardware and software solutions for construction and e-commerce logistics industries.

Soft Magnetic Skin for Super-Resolution Tactile Sensing with Force Self-decoupling

Human skin can sense subtle changes of both normal and shear forces as well as perceive stimulus with finer resolution than the average spacing between mechanoreceptors. By contrast, existing tactile sensors for robotic applications are inferior, lacking both accurate force decoupling and proper spatial resolution. This project aims at developing skin-alike soft tactile sensors based on principles of magnetic fields.