Dean's Message
Spring 2012  No.21
Worldwide Recognition - Fellows
Jolly Good Fellows


Celebrations were certainly in order in December when six School of Engineering professors were elected 2012 Fellows of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). HKUST had the highest number of newly elevated IEEE Fellows among universities and institutions in Asia, bringing the total number of IEEE Fellows at the University to 26. The University gained more new IEEE Fellows than countries such as Korea, Singapore and Australia.

The IEEE is the world’s leading professional association for advancing technology for humanity, with 395,000 members in more than 160 countries. Fellowship is the highest grade of membership and is a distinction reserved for select members with outstanding accomplishments. The number of Fellows chosen in any one year is limited to 0.1% of the total voting membership.

The association is a leading authority on areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. Of the total Fellows at HKUST, 18 are from the Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering, six from the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, and one from the Department of Mechanical Engineering.


Prof Oscar Au, Electronic and Computer Engineering, Director of Multimedia Technology Research Center

Cited for contributions to multimedia coding and security. Prof Au’s fast motion estimation algorithms have been accepted into the ISO/IEC 14496-7 MPEG-4 international video coding standard and the China AVS-M standard, and he holds eight US patents on his signal processing techniques.


Prof Roger Cheng, Electronic and Computer Engineering, Associate Dean of Engineering (Undergraduate Studies)

Elected for work on multiuser communications in wireless systems. Prof Cheng’s research interests extend across multiuser information theory, code division multiple access (CDMA) technology, and OFDM and OFDMA technology. He has 19 patents and patent applications.


Prof Vincent Lau, Electronic and Computer Engineering, Founder and Co-director of Huawei-HKUST Innovation Laboratory

Recognized for contributions to wireless communication systems with channel feedback. He holds 28 US patents on various advanced wireless technologies and is the key contributor for four IEEE 802.22 (cognitive radio) specifications.


Prof Johnny Sin, Electronic and Computer Engineering, Director of the Nanoelectronics Fabrication Facility, Director of the Semiconductor Product Analysis and Design Enhancement Center

Cited for his work on the design and commercialization of power semiconductor devices. Prof Sin’s design has been widely used in home appliances, portable electronics, mobiles and automotive equipment. He is the holder of 12 patents.


Prof Danny Tsang, Electronic and Computer Engineering, Associate Director of NIE Social Media Lab

Recognized for research on the optimization of communications networks. Prof Tsang   invented the 64B/65B encoding now adopted by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)’s Generic Framing Procedure recommendation GFP-T (ITU-T G.7041/Y.1303). He has been awarded three US patents and one Chinese patent.


Prof Qian Zhang, Computer Science and Engineering, Founder and Co-director of Huawei-HKUST Innovation Laboratory, Director of Digital Life Research Center

Honored for her contributions to the mobility and spectrum management of wireless networks and mobile communications. Prof Zhang is the inventor of about 30 international patents. In December, she also received the Chinese Young Scientists Award from the China Association for Science and Technology.

Globally Renowned Across Engineering

In addition to IEEE, the members of several other prestigious international organizations have acknowledged the tremendous input of School of Engineering faculty members to their respective fields by selecting them as Fellows.



Prof Christopher Chao, Mechanical Engineering, Associate Dean of Engineering (Research & Graduate Studies), Director of the Building Energy Research Center, Associate Director of the Center for Sustainable Energy Technology

Prof Chao has been elected an ASME Fellow, a top honor in the mechanical engineering field. Nominated by their peers, ASME Fellows are recognized for their outstanding engineering achievements and have had 10 or more years of active practice and continuous membership. ASME has over 120,000 members in over 150 countries but only 3,000-plus members have attained the grade of Fellow. In addition, Prof Chao has also been elected to ISIAQ’s Academy of Fellows, the most prestigious international recognition in the field of indoor air quality studies. Election to the Academy is based on contributions to the field via outstanding research and/or technological development. His research areas include energy, thermofluids, and indoor air science.


Prof Guanghao Chen, Civil and Environmental Engineering

In being elected to IWA Fellowship, Prof Chen becomes a member of an elite group of global water professionals renowned for their guidance and leadership in the world of water science, technology and management. His research interests include sustainable sewage treatment systems; sludge minimization in bio-treatment; sewer process modeling; MBR process optimization; low-cost and compact wastewater treatment technology. Prof Chen is the first Hong Kong scholar to receive this prestigious honor. The IWA has a global network of 10,000 water professionals.


Prof Furong Gao, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Director of Center for Polymer Processing and Systems

Prof Gao was recognized for his studies and discoveries related to injection molding machine control. His research interests span process modeling, control and monitoring; polymer processing; applications of neural networks, fuzzy systems and expert systems. He is the first to be accorded this honor in Mainland China and Hong Kong.


Prof Christopher Leung, Department Head, Civil and Environmental Engineering

Prof Leung is the first from an institution in Greater China to be named a RILEM Fellow. The organization is a leading international association for the advancement of construction materials and their application in structures. Since the Fellow grade was inaugurated in 1994, only 51 have been elected. Prof Leung’s research interests focus on construction materials, micromechanics of fiber composites, fracture mechanics, optical fiber sensors, and the application of composites in civil engineering.


Prof Dekai Wu, Computer Science and Engineering, Human Language Technology Center

Named among the first 17 Founding Fellows of the prestigious ACL, Prof Wu was cited for his significant contribution to machine translation and inversion transduction grammar. Prof Wu pioneered machines that learn by themselves to translate between Chinese and English, as well as the world’s first public web translation service in 1995 at HKUST, a forerunner of Google Translate and Yahoo’s Babelfish. A top global researcher in the artificial intelligence and cognitive science fields of natural language processing, language engineering, and human language technology, he is one of the only two ACL Founding Fellows from Asia and the only one from Greater China.