ERIC KAN WING HONG
AMM&NS Ph.D. student, Mr Eric Kan Wing Hong recently emerged as the second runner up at the first Young Persons’ World Lecture Competition, organised by the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) and held in London on 21 June 2005. Making his presentation on “Nanocrystalline Germanium for Memory Applications: Small Dots with Big Potentials”, he was selected to represent Singapore after competing locally in two preliminary rounds against 15 other competitors. He is therefore one of the five young materials and minerals scientists and engineers from around the globe competing for the coveted prize as well as having an invaluable opportunity to share his research with others in the material community.
Eric credited SMA’s conducive environment as being the “perfect training ground” to help him cultivate his research abilities, prompting him to think analytically from different perspectives as well as express himself better after going through the rigours of presentations, technical lectures and answering questions from the professors.
“SMA offers the opportunities but one has to be independent to fully appreciate them,” he says, “I thank SMA for providing the research platform by being financially supportive.” He also appreciates his supervisors for giving him the freedom in determining the direction of his own research, helping to mould him into someone who can believe in himself as well as the access to the combined resources from all three universities, NUS, NTU and MIT that made SMA like a “one-stop destination” to further one’s studies.
His research on nano-materials focused on enhancing the density of data storage in handheld electronic gadgets without having to increase their size. This would enable electronic devices such as handphones to be produced at half the size of the human palm while becoming more powerful in terms of functionality, thus improving the consumer experience.
“Success does not come easily. If you yearn for something, you have to work for it. The harder you work, the sweeter the success would be,” Eric says. Despite finding the coursework demanding when he first joined SMA, he has managed to do well and become more confident about working in a competitive environment. Today, he aspires to become a successful researcher and entrepreneur.
“I am looking forward to excelling in life which cannot be measured empirically,” Eric says, “In research, intelligence will bring you far. It is the passion that brings you further.”