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PolyU Forging Aerospace Frontiers

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the Hong Kong Aerospace Technology Group (HKATG) solidified their collaboration by signing a Memorandum of Understanding. This partnership aims to delve into the realms of satellite navigation, communication, remote sensing, payload development, and knowledge exchange among various sectors. The collaboration seeks to advance cutting-edge concepts and technologies such as smart cities and urban air mobility.

PolyU and HKATG’s collaboration encompasses a range of initiatives. Most notably, HKATG’s contribution includes providing PolyU with conventional optical remote sensing and synthetic aperture radar observation data across Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area. Moreover, they have offered low-Earth orbit satellite payload space, payload testing, and measurement and control services for educational and research purposes.

As a gesture of their commitment, HKATG has generously granted PolyU the naming rights for a multispectral optical remote sensing satellite, scheduled for launch in 2024. This substantial donation, valued at HK$20 million, encapsulates data and equipment provisions as well.

To express their gratitude for HKATG’s substantial support, PolyU held a ceremony on 23 August 2023. The event was graced by the presence of distinguished individuals including the Deputy President and Provost; the Executive Vice President; the Vice President (Research and Innovation); the Associate Vice President (Mainland Research Advancement); the Non-executive Director, HKATG; the Vice President and Technology Strategy Director, HKATG.

In addition, experts from PolyU’s Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics and Department of Aeronautical and Aviation Engineering, specialising in satellite applications, remote sensing data analysis, and artificial intelligence, were also in attendance.

In a statement, the Executive Vice President underscored PolyU’s extensive involvement in aerospace technology and satellite navigation research, having notably participated in the Nation’s space missions. The partnership with HKATG stands as a testament to the robust collaboration between the two entities, driven by their mutual dedication to generating positive societal impacts.

HKATG’s contribution will empower faculty members, enabling them to excel in education and research, foster aspiring aerospace professionals, facilitate innovative research to address societal needs and make significant contributions on a national scale.

Speaking on behalf of HKATG, it Non-executive Director expressed delight in joining forces with PolyU. This collaboration will play a pivotal role in nurturing emerging talents for the growth of new industries and the advancement of aerospace technology within Hong Kong.

A long-standing partnership with PolyU is envisioned. It will leverage the university’s reservoir of research experts and training resources to fortify the talent pipeline. The overarching objective is to enhance product design and quality, thereby propelling the transformation and evolution of Hong Kong’s future industries.

PolyU’s commitment to remote sensing research and its implications for smart city development has spanned several years. Employing high-resolution optical satellites has proven instrumental in research projects related to a multitude of multispectral attributes. These include investigations into carbon neutrality, monitoring tree health, classifying land cover, evaluating marine water quality, and comprehending urban surface characteristics.

Looking forward, the impending launch of the multispectral optical satellite in the upcoming year promises to be a game-changer. This satellite will offer more frequent and higher-resolution data, thereby catalysing research and applications linked to environmental concerns. Researchers at PolyU are also exploring the potential of utilising the low-orbit satellites within the Golden Bauhinia Constellation to enhance navigation services and host specialised navigation payloads in subsequent low-orbit satellite endeavours.


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