Taiwanese research institutions win six 2020 R&D 100 Awards

Taipei,  Taiwanese research institutions won six awards this year at a prestigious science and technology competition, the R&D 100 Awards, a Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) official said Monday.

This marks the 13th consecutive year in which Taiwanese technologies and products have been honored at the awards, gaining a total of 59 wins, said MOEA Vice Minister Lin Chuan-neng (林全能).

Three of the winning applications this year were developed by the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), two by the Metal Industries Research & Development Center (MIRDC) and one by the Institute for Information Industry (III), Lin said.

In a statement released by the ITRI, the chair of the award’s judging panel, Paul J. Heney, said that the institution had an “impressive year” with three winners.

The reason why ITRI’s innovations stand out is because their focus is always on “inspired design that has real-world applications” that are useful to society, Heney was quoted as saying.

Among the winning applications by the ITRI is an artificial intelligence device that can assess chronic wounds — wounds that do not heal in a normal way and in a predictable amount of time — the institute said.

The device, called iSCare, can assess the size, depth and necrosis of chronic skin injuries with an accuracy of 85 percent, the ITRI said.

Another ITRI invention is a material called the “Networked Amide Epoxy Polymer Electrolyte,” which the ITRI said can be used to replace the highly flammable liquid electrolytes in high-energy lithium-ion batteries for increased safety.

The third ITRI invention that won this year is a dye-sensitized cell that can generate electricity under low light conditions, and which the ITRI is already working on with the Formosa Plastics Corp. for trial production, it said.

According to a separate MOEA statement on Monday, one of the winning technologies developed by the MIRDC is a drone that can inspect rotating wind turbines.

The drone is able to detect cracks and paint chippings as small as 4 mm and can finish inspecting one turbine in just five minutes, the MOEA said.

The other is a system that can predict how a certain piece of magnesium alloy will react with water by detecting the proportions of magnesium, zinc and calcium it contains, the MOEA said.

The III’s winning technology is a production support system that can help bicycle factories identify problems in their production lines, the MOEA said.

The R&D 100 Awards is in its 58th year and attracted submissions from 19 countries, according to the awards website.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the winners were announced via livestream this year from Sept. 29 to Oct. 1, the website added.


Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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