Sensing tech development earns researcher ATSE Fellowship

Professor Huijun Zhou being presented the award by ATSE President Professor Hugh Bradlow, Credit: ATSE ACTIVATE 2022 © Salty Dingo 2022

A Griffith researcher’s significant contributions to the development of sensing technology has attracted a prestigious fellowship.

Professor Huijun Zhao, Director of Griffith’s Centre for Clean Energy and Catalysis, was among the 21 recipients of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE) 2022 Fellowships.

The 2022 ATSE Fellows. Credit: ATSE ACTIVATE 2022 © Salty Dingo 2022

ATSE President Hugh Bradlow presented Professor Zhao and the new Fellows at a ceremony in Sydney, and said the new Fellows were shaping Australia’s technology-powered, human-driven future.

“Elected by their peers, ATSE Fellows are leaders in applied science, technology and engineering and we celebrate their exceptional professional contributions to Australian STEM innovation,” Professor Bradlow said.

“While the 2022 new Fellows span multiple critical industries, we are pleased to welcome so many at the forefront of tackling climate change. They are creating better batteries to support renewable energy supplies, increasing efficiency and flexibility of solar cells and panels, and sustainable mining practices.”

Professor Zhao has made significant contributions to the development of electrocatalysis, photoelectrocatalysis and thermocatalysis principles, and nanostructured catalysts for important reactions of solar energy conversion, batteries, fuel cells, hydrogen generation, nitrogen-fixation, biomass-derived platform compounds upgrading, environmental remediation, bactericidal and sensing applications.

He has discovered a suite of photoelectrocatalysis-based sensing principles, and successfully transformed these discoveries into commercial instruments that have brought a paradigm shift for aquatic organic pollutants monitoring/assessment practice.

Professor Huijun Zhao, Director of the Centre for Clean Environment and Energy, smiling in front of lab equipment
Professor Huijun Zhao.

Professor Zhao also established an array of catalyst activation principles to unlock the catalytic powers of nonprecious materials that address the shortfalls of catalysts for important catalysis reactions.

He has developed innovative chemical, microbiological and nano-technological approaches to understanding pollutants in aquatic environments and soils.

Professor Zhao’s sensing tools enabled dramatic improvement in water quality monitoring. His PeCOD®sensing technology has been patented worldwide and recommended by Health Canada’s Drinking Water Guidelines for monitoring organic matter in drinking water.

Working with major Australian water utilities and state government, Professor Zhao has also developed new analytical tools for efficient wastewater source control and management.