Water-Energy Nexus  - Sydney Nano Distinguished Lecture

Water-Energy Nexus - Sydney Nano Distinguished Lecture

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Our Distinguished Lecture series connects world-class researchers and thought-leaders with the Sydney Nano community.

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Please join the University of Sydney Nano Institute for our next Distinguished Lecture on 'Nature-inspired surfaces for water-energy nexus' by Professor Zuankai Wang, Department of Mechanical Engineering, City University of Hong Kong. Professor Antonio Tricoli, Faculty of Engineering and co-lead of the Sydney Nano Grand Challenge - Nanosensing Airborne Pathogens for Public Biosecurity hosts and moderates this Distinguished Lecture.

About the talk:

The outbreak of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) recalls for the paramount importance of harmonious co-existence between humans and nature. Instead of fighting nature, we can learn from nature’s endless strategies and inspiration for better living. Indeed, honed by billion years of evolution, nature has developed extraordinary principles that are characterized by green energy and resilience. This talk focuses on how learning from nature’s principles creates unconventional wisdoms and surprises, which help to address the grand challenges such as water and energy.

In the basic research, I will first describe our efforts in answering three fundamental questions in surface science. i.e. what’s the physical limit of solid/liquid contact time since the first observation of droplet dynamics in 1876, how to enable liquids to select their spreading direction since the first study of liquid spreading in 19th century, and how to achieve the spontaneous, directional, rapid liquid flow. In the applied research, I will discuss our recent efforts in developing robust, scalable, multifunctional surfaces/coatings as well as exploring their applications in water collection, energy harvesting, flexible devices, switchable adhesion, and thermal cooling including completely suppressing the Leidenfrost effect that was observed in 1756.

Event details:

Please be sure to RSVP to the event by 23 June.

About the speaker:

Prof Zuankai Wang is a Chair Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Associate Dean in the College of Engineering at the City University of Hong Kong. He earned his B.S. degree from Jilin University in 2000 and Master degree from Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, in 2003, and PhD degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2008. After one-year postdoc training at Columbia University, he joined the City University of Hong Kong in September 2009. He is the founding member of Young Academy of Science of Hong Kong, fellow of the International Society of Bionic Engineering, and Changjiang Chair Professor awarded by Ministry of Education of China. He has won many awards including the 2021 Green Tech Award, 2020 Xplorer Prize, Top 10 Innovation and Technology News in Hong Kong in 2020, World Cultural Council Special Recognition Award, Outstanding Youth Award from International Society of Bionic Engineering, Outstanding Research Award (2017) and President’s Lectureship at the City University of Hong Kong (2020 and 2018). His inventions on “Fog-to-electricity Generator with Ultrahigh Power Density” and “Structured Thermal Armor” won the Gold Medal with Congratulations of Jury (the highest award, 10/800) and Gold Medal in the 48th International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva, respectively. Over the past 9 years, he has authored and co-authored over 20 papers in Nature/Science/PNAS series journals.

Image below: Prof Zuankai Wang

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