With the opening of Tam Wing Fan Innovation Wing Two, two Tech Talks, “Unravelling the transmission of vertical outbreaks: Each drainage stack is an aerosol factory” by Professor Yuguo Li and “Re-understanding of Active Volcanoes” by Professor Quentin Yue, were organized on January 20 and Jan 27, 2022 respectively.
The Tech Talk is a series of forums and dialogues given by engineering researchers of diverse academic backgrounds to share their insights on innovation-related topics. All members of the HKU community and the general public are welcome to join the Tech Talk.
Unravelling the transmission of vertical outbreaks: Each drainage stack is an aerosol factory
Professor Yuguo Li (Chair Professor of Building Environment, Department of Mechanical Engineering)
More than 10 vertical outbreaks of COVID-19 have been observed in high-rise housing in Hong Kong. Together with the 2003 SARS Amoy Garden outbreak, these outbreaks suggest the roles of building drainage pipes in the transmission of infection, probably not limited to SARS and SARS-CoV-2. In collaboration with the Environmental Protection Department (EPD), a team led by Professor Yuguo Li conducted field measurements in some of the infection venues and explore the transmission mechanisms. In the talk, Professor Li demonstrated how his proposed chimney effect explains most of these infections, how the drainage pipe was poorly ventilated, what one can do to protect our family, and what society can do to provide healthy housing.
Re-understanding of Active Volcanoes
Professor Z.Q. Quentin Yue (Department of Civil Engineering)
The conventional understanding of active volcanoes is based on the theory of hot magma (molten rock) from mantle. Although this magma theory has been widely believed in Earth Science, the prediction of volcano eruption can be incorrect. For example, the recent massive eruption of the Tonga Hunga volcano was not predicted. The devastating eruption of the Mount Ontake volcano in Japan on Sept. 27, 2014 was also not predicted and/or warned at all, consequently caused 55 fatalities, 9 missing and more than 60 injured.
In the talk, Professor Yue presented his re-understanding of active volcanoes using his methane gas theory. This methane gas theory of active volcanoes is original and can interpret all the observed phenomena associated with active volcanoes. It can be used to correctly predict and effectively reduce the occurrence of damaging volcano eruptions. It can be further used to obtain the huge amount of natural gas resources from gas chambers of active volcanoes at several kilometers below the ground rocks.
For the upcoming Tech Talk, please stay tuned at: