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Researcher from Bangor University shortlisted for Newton Prize

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Dr Liyang Yue from Bangor University’s School of Electronic Engineering has been shortlisted for the prestigious 2017 Newton Prize for his project based on building a super-resolution metamaterial 3D printing system.

The Prize aims to encourage researchers to participate in the Newton Fund as partners with the UK and to work on the most crucial challenges facing Newton countries. This year these include: India, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

The concept has been developed to prove how UK partnerships with Newton countries are solving global challenges. It is an annual fund, which equals £1 million and is given to the best research or innovation supporting the social welfare and economic development of developing countries. Dr Yue has a chance of winning up to £200,000 from the fund in order to advance his project.

The Newton Prize has a complete UK Government investment of £735 million up until 2012 with having each one of the 18 partner countries providing matched funding and resources. It intends to build research and innovation partnerships to support the economic development and social welfare as well as to develop research and innovation ability for a long-term sustainable growth.

Dr Yue’s project allows 3D metamaterials to be directly printed from 3D CAD models with higher design freedom and lower cost compared to conventional photolithography methods. Impacts of his work can be found in the Vietnamese telecommunications and photonics industries, as well as in the environment, health and energy sectors.  After receiving the news he said: “I am very excited and honoured to be shortlisted for this prize.

“My Vietnamese partner and I spent nine months developing a micro/nano 3D printing platform in Bangor. These printed micro/nano structures can be used to fabricate an artificial electromagnetic metamaterial using ‘exotic’ properties which cannot be found in nature. This platform is a low-cost but powerful research tool for fundamental nanotechnology and photonics research in both countries, and a huge scientific impact could be expected from it in the future.”

Dr Iestyn Pierce, Head of the School of Electronic Engineering said: “I am delighted that Dr Yue’s work has been recognised. Dr Yue’s research is a fine example of the ground-breaking, innovative work being conducted at the University. We attract some of the best international-calibre researchers and teachers to our School and is another great example of our international partnership working.”

The Newton Prize winners will be announced at the celebratory award ceremonies held in each of the partner countries:

India – 1 November

Thailand – 8 November

Malaysia – 14 November

Vietnam – 16 November

The Minister for Universities, Science and Research Jo Johnson will also host a UK event in London in early December to celebrate the first ear of the Prize and to announce the 2018 Newton Prize countries.

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Aleksandra Kozłowska

Deputy News Editor 2017/18

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