CUHK wins unprecedented International Sustainability Award in the James Dyson Award

Media Release
A student research team from The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has won the International Sustainability Award in the James Dyson Award for their invention “E-COATING”. This marks the first time a team from the Greater China region has won this international award. The invention was previously awarded the Silver Medal at the International Exhibition of Inventions Geneva 2023.
CUHK’s Interim Dean of Engineering Professor Tsang Hon Ki said, “I sincerely congratulate the CUHK research team for achieving remarkable success. This outstanding invention is making waves internationally and demonstrates the creative and research capabilities of CUHK students, and I am proud of their accomplishment. Research and Innovation is one of the key areas highlighted in the CUHK Strategic Plan 2021-2025. The University will continue to support our research teams in their pursuit of excellence, translating their achievements into practical applications for the betterment of society.”
E-COATING is a cooling coating embodies the principles of circular economy. It is made from recycled waste glass, manufactured at a lower cost, and capable of reducing the indoor temperature of buildings without using electricity. The design team members include Chan Hoi Fung Ronaldo, a 4th year student majoring in Energy and Environmental Engineering, and Xiao Can, a 2nd year PhD student majoring in Mechanical and Automation Engineering.
In an experiment, two building models with concrete roofs were exposed to intense sunlight. The indoor temperature of the model with E-COATING on the roof was approximately 5 degrees Celsius lower than the unpainted model, while the surface temperature of the model with E-COATING was about 20 degrees Celsius lower.
Chan Hoi Fung Ronaldo explained, “E-COATING can effectively reflect solar radiation, and it can dissipate infrared heat in 8-13μm that can pass through the atmospheric window to the outer space, resulting in a cooling effect of the paint.”
Xiao Can added, “The inspiration behind our invention of E-COATING stems from the urgent environmental issues at hand, including global warming and urban solid waste problems. We firmly believe that sustainable development is the key to creating a better future. Therefore, we hope to contribute our efforts to alleviate the global environmental issues.”
CUHK’s E-COATING research team emerged victorious in the Hong Kong leg of the James Dyson Design Award 2023 in September this year. This achievement qualified them to compete with over 100 entries from 29 different countries and regions worldwide. Their work was selected as one of the global shortlists of 20 pioneering inventions and ultimately stood out among the entries, earning them the prestigious International Sustainability Award, as judged by a panel of Dyson engineers from around the world.

About James Dyson Award

(From left) Chan Hoi Fung Ronaldo and Xiao Can.

E-COATING is made from recycled glass that embodies the principles of a circular economy.