Three young researchers who made a name for themselves at the beginning of their careers received the Young Scientist Award from Vice Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat.
Here’s a look at how her research broke new ground.
> Working on the building blocks for futuristic computersDr. Yvonne Gao, 33, develops the most important hardware components for the quantum computer – a futuristic computer that is more powerful than today’s supercomputers to develop computing processes to tackle complex topics such as climate modeling and optimization of logistics.
Developing such a superior computer with robust performance is an active research area, said Gao, Presidential Young Professor in the Physics Department at the National University of Singapore.
“My goal is to be a leader in the hardware development of the first full-fledged quantum computer and learn more about the fascinating effects of the quantum world in the process,” she said.
She hopes that quantum computers will usher in a new era of scientific discovery and innovation.
> Unlocking the key to obesity and overeating
Dr. Sarah Luo found that a collection of neurons at the base of the brain regulates eating behavior, affecting people with metabolic diseases like obesity and diabetes.
When she and her team activated the so-called tuberal core in the brains of mice, they began to overeat, even when they were not hungry.
“Whenever we moved the mice back into a new environment, they began to eat (excessively) even when the neurons were not activated,” added Luo, the lead researcher at the Agency for Science, Technology and Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology Research is.
This meant that the tubercle core and food-related environments can lead to overeating and obesity.
Dr. Luo and her team are looking for key target areas to treat obesity and curb overeating.
> On the mission to develop the next generation of AI technology
Dr. Zhang Hanwang from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is not satisfied with the current artificial intelligence (AI) technology and wants to develop smarter versions of the new generation.
âToday’s AI only works like a super imitator. His superpower only comes from perfectly mimicking big data, âhe said.
The assistant professor at NTU’s School of Computer Science and Engineering noted that current AI makes predictions by merely seeing correlations rather than causal relationships.
“My research is trying to develop an energy-efficient AI that predicts through causality but not through correlation,” he said.
Zhang and his team have developed and recognized a number of advanced algorithms that will be at the core of next-generation AI. Such advanced AI has a place in everyday life, in areas like online learning and healthcare. – The Straits Times / ANN