The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and King's Flair Development Limited (KF) celebrated the inauguration of the “HKUST-KF Joint Laboratory for Sustainable Technologies” (Lab) today. With the launch of the Lab, HKUST and KF will collaborate to explore frontier research and applications in the areas of sustainable technologies and materials, carbon reduction and re-industrialization.
The joint effort aims to develop innovative technologies that promote sustainable living environments and address the increasingly severe environmental issues caused by climate change, in support of Hong Kong's carbon neutrality and national dual-carbon goals.
Led by HKUST faculty including Prof. YANG Jinglei, Professor of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Prof. PAN Ding, Associate Professor of the Department of Physics and Department of Chemistry, the Lab will engage in the areas of technology transfer, as well as conceptualization, scaling-up and manufacturing of energy-efficient, sustainable and commercially viable daily household essentials by leveraging KF’s industrial expertise and HKUST’s research excellence on sustainable material technologies.
The Lab will focus on material and product innovation, specifically researching and developing modified plastic materials to enhance their usability, expand applications, improve functionality, and create new variations. Utilizing physics, chemistry, or a combination of both methodologies, the Lab will enhance plastic material performance according to market expectations. This includes reducing costs, improving specific properties, and introducing new functions. Examples of potential creations include durable transparent self-cleaning nano-coatings, antibacterial plastic materials, and new materials such as superhydrophobic and oleophobic detergent-free plastics for kitchenware. These advancements not only widen the application of plastic materials but also extend their lifespan, minimizing environmental impact and reducing reliance on petrochemical materials. Ultimately, the Lab's deliverables contribute to the sustainable development of Hong Kong and the world.
At the launch ceremony, HKUST Vice-President for Research and Development Prof. Tim Cheng said, “With HKUST’s strong foundation in basic research, we are well-positioned to play a leading role in bridging the gap between the lab and industries. We are committed to helping companies recognize and assimilate the value of new ideas, technologies, or processes, and to apply these new technologies to commercial ends in order to enhance the city's green products and manufacturing ecosystem. As a major research focus of the university, sustainability and green technology are at the forefront of our efforts to drive innovation and create a sustainable future. As such, the new joint lab will be instrumental in driving the delivery of a range of innovative sustainable products by synergizing HKUST’s research expertise in the area and KF’s strong market intelligence for a greener future.”
Dr. Alex Wong Siu Wah, Chairman and CEO of King's Flair Development said, “As a market-leading diversified home product design, manufacturer, and distributor, King’s Flair is committed to providing advanced material one-stop solutions for international home brands. With the increasing impact of climate change, there is a growing demand from consumers for energy-efficient and sustainable products. We are honored to collaborate with HKUST, leveraging the rich resources and expertise of the Laboratory to further expand our product portfolio and enhance the long-term competitiveness of the Group. Additionally, we look forward to working with the next generation of researchers to jointly contribute to the innovative green industries in Hong Kong, accelerate the low-carbon transformation, support Hong Kong’s path towards carbon neutrality, and inject renewed energy and momentum into the long-term development of Hong Kong’s reindustrialization.”
Following the ceremony, KF delegates visited Prof. Yang Jinglei’s lab, where he is developing an AI + Robotics empowered high-throughput autonomous R&D platform to design, manufacture, and characterize green and sustainable materials and structures to address the challenging issues in household, aerospace, construction, and transportation sectors.
About The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) (https://hkust.edu.hk/) is a world-class research intensive university that focuses on science, technology and business as well as humanities and social science. HKUST offers an international campus, and a holistic and interdisciplinary pedagogy to nurture well-rounded graduates with global vision, a strong entrepreneurial spirit and innovative thinking. Over 80% of our research work were rated “Internationally excellent” or “world leading” in the Research Assessment Exercise 2020 of Hong Kong’s University Grants Committee. We were ranked 2nd in Times Higher Education’s Young University Rankings 2023, and our graduates were ranked 30th worldwide and among the best from universities from Asia in Global Employability University Ranking and Survey 2022. As of early 2023, HKUST members have founded 1,645 active start-ups, including 9 Unicorns and 11 exits (IPO or M&A), generating economic impact worth over HK$400billion. InvestHK cited QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021 to demonstrate the performance of five world’s top 100 local universities in several innovation-centric areas, among which HKUST ranked top in four engineering and materials science subjects.
About King's Flair Development Limited
King's Flair Development Limited, an indirectly wholly owned subsidiary of King’s Flair International (Holdings) Limited, a company listed on the Main Board of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (Stock Code: 6822.HK), is a market-leading one-stop kitchenware and household product solutions provider. The company is committed to offering brand customers end-to-end services, including research and design development, direct material sourcing, engineering solutions, to supply chain and quality control management to its clients, covering an extensive assortment of products which include kitchen utensils and gadgets, bakeware, drinkware, food preparation products, sinkware, as well as storage and accessories. Adhering to the corporate culture of “innovation” and “creation”, the Group relies on an experienced team of designers and professional engineers to handle all aspects of product development, from material selection to mold development, production, and quality management. In addition, King’s Flair collaborates with multiple globally renowned brands to co-design products and has obtained numerous patents worldwide. Leveraging its extensive market knowledge and expertise in production processes, King’s Flair has successfully entered the downstream market by establishing over 2,000 sales points in Greater China and other major Southeast Asian cities. The Company has also set up online stores on various prominent e-commerce platforms, empowering brand customers to seize significant business opportunities in the Greater China and Asian markets.