CityU professor earns Natural Science Award from the Ministry of Education

Scarlett Leung

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Professor Henry Chung Shu-hung, Associate Dean of the College of Science and Engineering of City University of Hong Kong (CityU), and Professor Zhang Jun, Associate Dean of the School of Information Science and Technology of Sun Yat-Sen University, earned the First Class Prize in the Natural Science Award presneted by the Ministry of Education for their research project Ant Colony System for Optimisation of Power Electronics Circuits. Their research, which has profound implications on the study of electronics circuits, was inspired by the behaviour of ants in searching for food. This intelligent behaviour is a secret that scientists have tried to crack for centuries.

When ants begin to find food, they have no idea of where to go. However, once an ant finds food, it will send out a signal that attracts other ants in the surrounding, leading more ants to be able to find food. After some time, most ants will repeatedly follow the same route, which will be the most direct and optimal route.

Professor Chung and Professor Zhang applied the model of the ants to optimise various technologies and pioneered its use in the analysis of electronic circuits. Their technological simulation model was also applied to the power systems of trains and automobiles, which can not only enhance the stability of voltage that makes a vehicle run smoother, but also prolong the product life. When the technology was used on the internet system and the power system of Sun Yat-Sen University, it proved that it could effectively optimise the performance of the electronics circuits.

Professor Chung has been concentrating on the research of electronic and electrical products, lighting technology, renewable energy, high-voltage AC/DC power conversion, mini device control, and fuzzy logic. He has published six academic books and over 250 papers and held 12 patents. His efforts in recent years on the ant project have earned him this prestigious award.

A Visiting Professor at Sun Yat-Sen University, Professor Chung said his collaboration with Professor Zhang, who used to be his PhD students at CityU, demonstrated the mutual benefits of teaching and research and the passing-on of knowledge. Also, it represented an achievement of academic exchange between CityU and mainland universities.

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