ASTRI wins awards for Energy-Conserving Power Supply System and Intelligent Learning System for SEN Students at Hong Kong ICT Awards 2021

[Hong Kong, 30 November 2021] The Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI) has won a Smart Living (Smart Home) Silver Award for its Power Supply System for Carbon Neutral Buildings at the Hong Kong Information and Communications Technology Awards (ICT Awards) 2021. ASTRI also won a Smart People (Smart Education and Learning) Certificate of Merit with education technology firm Bridge AI Ltd. for a jointly-developed Integrated Intelligent Intervention (3i)-Learning System.

ASTRI Chairman Ir Sunny Lee, JP and CEO Dr Denis Yip hailed the award recipients at the ICT Awards 2021 Awards Presentation Ceremony, held yesterday.

Dr Yip said how pleased he was with the achievements of the ASTRI teams, and thanked the R&D professionals for their efforts. He continued, “They have shown how, by leveraging cutting-edge technologies, ASTRI is helping to transform Hong Kong into a sustainable smart city, assisting the development of the industrial and commercial sectors, and improving citizens’ quality of life. We are also proactively seizing opportunities arising under the “14th Five-Year Plan”, and supporting the government’s vision of developing Hong Kong into an international innovation and technology centre.”

Utilising third-generation semiconductor technologies, ASTRI’s Power Supply System for Carbon Neutral Buildings enables buildings to be powered by Direct Current (DC) instead of Alternating Current (AC), reducing electricity usage by 15% to 20%.

Currently, buildings in Hong Kong are powered by AC, with this accounting for about 65% of Hong Kong’s total energy consumption. Dr River Li, ASTRI’s Deputy Director of Smart Power and Energy Systems, Integrated Circuits Systems, and his team developed a high-efficiency power converter and a digital DC circuit breaker to allow electrical equipment (including household and commercial electrical appliances) to be powered by DC efficiently and safely. 

This system has been applied to a conference room in the premises of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department. A power equipment manufacturer in Mainland China has also introduced this technology for property developers wishing to adopt a DC power solution for their properties.

Dr Li noted, “Using DC power is a major trend in the development of smart cities. We will proactively promote this innovation with a view to contributing to reducing carbon emissions in Hong Kong and the Mainland.”

ASTRI’s other award-winning innovation, the Integrated Intelligent Intervention (3i)-Learning System, creates tailored individualised education programmes and provides behavioural therapies for students with special educational needs (SEN). It combines Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things (AIoT) to analyse students’ performances, along with physiological data (such as students’ heartbeat rate) and data on the classroom environment (such as temperature and humidity). The system assesses the students’ learning progress, and makes this information available for teachers and therapists.

Mr Andrew Sze, ASTRI’s Senior Manager of Intelligent Cognitive System, Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analytics, and leader of the R&D team that developed the system, said, “This system means teachers and parents can support SEN students’ training at school and at home, relieving the therapists’ heavy workload. It also allows students to continue their training even if they cannot return to school due to the pandemic.”

Mr Victor Wong, CEO of Bridge AI, commented, “Two special schools have already introduced this system. That number will increase to at least nine in the next school year. A community centre has also adopted it, benefiting grass-roots families. We will continue to promote the system, in the hope that more and more SEN students will be able to benefit from it.”

The ASTRI R&D team members involved in developing the Power Supply System for Carbon Neutral Building are Victor Cheung, Li Qingchun, Terence Lau, Li Xin, Andy Yeung and Katrina Lam. 

The team members involved in devising the Integrated Intelligent Intervention (3i)-Learning System are Steven Wong, Eric Cheung and Liu Huan.


The system developed by Dr River Li’s team consists of a cutting-edge digital DC circuit breaker (which he is holding) and a high-efficiency power converter.

Mr Andrew Sze (left) and Mr Victor Wong (right) hope more SEN students can benefit from the intelligent learning system. 

Ir Sunny Lee, JP and Dr Denis Yip (front row; 3rd and 4th from left) hail the award recipients at the ICT Awards 2021 Awards Presentation Ceremony.