The award ceremony of the APEC Science Prize for Innovation, Research and Education (ASPIRE) was held in Hanoi, Vietnam under the theme “New Material Technologies” on May 11th 2017. Professor Zhu Yanwu of the School of Chemistry and Materials Science, University of Science and Technology of China (USTC), who was recommended by the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology, stood out among 17 candidates from 21 economies and won the prize. Tran Quoc Khanh, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology of Vietnam conferred the award.
ASPIRE was introduced by the U.S. in 2011 within the framework of the APEC Policy Partnership on Science, Technology and Innovation (PPSTI) for the purpose of honoring research personnel of APEC economies who have presented frontier ideas and advanced technologies through academic exchanges and contributed to trade and economic growth in the region. Nominees must be scientists who excel in cross-border research under the age of 40. As the winner of this year’s ASPIRE, Professor Zhu also received $25,000 USD offered by leading academic and scientific publishers Wiley and Elsevier.
Professor Zhu, who works in the School of Chemistry and Materials Science, USTC, has been dedicated to the production of graphene and other new carbon materials as well as related applied basic research. He was one of the first scientists to conduct research on the technologies for the scaled production of graphene and its application as a key component of energy materials, and has been committed to promoting technological innovation and commercialization of graphene material. Recently, he has developed a new 3D carbon material system and studied its potential application in energy storage and conversion. His research was commended by the ASPIRE evaluation committee which noted the extensive reference to Professor Zhu’s research findings and the application of research findings from him and other research personnel of APEC economies in the mass production of graphene material.
Deputy Minister Tran said that they acknowledged Professor Zhu’s contribution to carbon material development and look forward to his future research which would make even greater contribution to the APEC region. Christin Kjelland, Chair of PPSTI, said Professor Zhu is the representative of excellent young scientists of APEC members and has rich international experience in promoting technology progress in the Asia-Pacific through research. The CEO of Wiley and the Chairman of Elsevier said they were honored to sponsor the prize as a way to encourage young scientists like Professor Zhu Yanwu to continue promoting joint research and technological progress of the APEC region.