R&D Achievements

Award Highlights

A*STAR scholar from DSI wins Best Poster Award 2017

Anthony Tan with his winning poster on Magnetic Skyrmions.

The A*STAR Graduate Academy recently held its annual poster session for A*STAR scholars on 21 June 2017. The poster session was a roundup of the scholars’ one-year research attachment at the various research institutes in A*STAR and they will be embarking on their PhD studies next.

Out of the 24 poster entries from across all A*STAR RIs, Anthony Tan, an A*STAR scholar with DSI’s Non-Volatile Memory (NVM) division was awarded the Best Poster Award.

His project was on Magnetic skyrmions which are topologically stable spin structures recently discovered in magnetic films. Their nanoscale size and electrical manipulability are promising attributes for next-generation memory devices and the team has engineered a material platform to host room temperature skyrmions with tunable physical properties. His poster shows magnetic force microscopy (MFM) of skyrmions, showing tunability of their size (down to 25 nm) and density. Additionally, the demonstration of their electrical motion (up to 9 m/s) moves them closer to realizing skyrmion-based memory devices.The National Super Computing Centre held its annual High Performance Computing (HPC) conference, the Supercomputing Frontiers (SCF) 2017 last week.  


DSI receives the NSCC outstanding HPC Scientific Award

Dr Franck Ernult receiving the Outstanding HPC Scientific Award awarded to DSI from Peter Ho, Chairman of the NSCC Steering committee

The National Super Computing Centre held its annual High Performance Computing (HPC) conference, the Supercomputing Frontiers (SCF) 2017 last week.  

One key highlight of the SCF2017 opening ceremony is the launch of the inaugural SCF/NSCC Awards which recognises research and commercial efforts that tap on ASPIRE 1’s computational power to drive innovation, raise productivity and improve lives.

DSI was shortlisted as one of the finalists and eventually awarded the Outstanding HPC Scientific Award for the project “HPC-simulated materials platform for tunable room temperature magnetic Skyrmions accelerates development of non-volatile memory technologies” by Dr Anjan Soumyanarayanan and Anibal Gonzalez. 

The research team used NSCC resources to simulate the impact of magnetic properties of thin film materials on the behavior of skyrmions. Through this effort, the team demonstrated the presence of skyrmions with tunable properties in multilayer films compatible with industrial fabrication processes. Such a tunable skyrmion platform can pave the way for their use in future memory devices.

Read more about the event here.


2016 World Scientific Physics Research Award and Gold Medal

From Left: IPS Award co-Chair, Assoc Prof. Phil Chan and Prof. Lukiyanchuk at the IPS awards ceremony held on 9 February.

Prof. Boris Lukiyanchuk, A*STAR scientist and adjunct Professor at NTU was conferred the 2016 World Scientific Physics Research Award and Gold Medal by the Institute of Physics Singapore (IPS) for his outstanding contributions in modern physical optics, plasmonics, nanophotonics and modern theoretical physics related to laser-matter interaction done in Singapore. 

Annually, the award recognises an individual or team for significant contributions to pure and applied physics research. Prof. Lukiyanchuk was also the winner of the 2013 President's Science Award "for his outstanding input to the theory of laser-mater interactions and light scattering by nanoparticles, in particular to Fano resonance in plasmonic materials". He is Honorary Professor of Johannes Kepler University, Linz, Austria and Adjunct Professor of Nanyang Technological University.

IET A F Harvey Engineering Research Prize 2016

A*STAR Scientist, Dr Arseniy Kuznetsov clinches the prestigious international IET A F Harvey Engineering Research Prize 2016.

His outstanding contributions to research in the field of Lasers and Optoelectronics, as well as pioneering research on dielectric nanoantennas has won him the accolade.

Photonics, the science of light, is one of the most rapidly developing scientific fields resulting in a number of modern technologies, which have already become a part of our everyday life. Arseniy’s research will benefit the development of virtual and augmented reality devices, 3D holographic displays, among others. 

He presented his Prize Lecture, titled ‘Novel resonant dielectric nanophotonics for novel technologies’ at The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) London on 9 March. Watch the lecture here: https://tv.theiet.org/?videoid=9872 

Read more about the award: http://www.theiet.org/membership/member-news/42a/af-harvey-2016.cfm


DSI team clinches the IES Prestigious Engineering Achievement Award 2015

From Left: Myo Kyaw Sett, Yu Shengkai, Hua Wei, Er. Chong Kee Sen (President of IES Council) and Zhou Weidong with Minister Chan Chun Sing at the awards ceremony.

DSI team won the IES Prestigious Engineering Achievement Award for their project titled “ABSolution: Advanced Software Package for Nanometer Spaced Head-Disk Interface Design and Simulation”. The team, led by Yu Shengkai, consists of Hua Wei, Zhou Weidong and Myo Kyaw Sett from the Drive Systems and Technologies division in DSI.

The advanced software package (ABSolution) was developed for the nanometer spaced head-disk interface design and simulation. This is the first code in the world that allows for studying the coupling effects of interface aerodynamics and structures for the whole HDDs.  Currently, ABSolution is the only code in the market with the capability to study the coupling effects of air bearings with the mechanical components in HDDs, such as operational shock, load-unload, and dynamic touch-down and take-off simulations. The work based on the code also won the best paper award in the international conference ASME ISPS 2014.

The Awards Presentation was held during the World Engineers Summit 2015 Gala Dinner and IES Awards Night on 23 July 2015 at Resorts World Sentosa. The event was graced by Mr Chan Chun Sing, Minister, Prime Minister’s Office.

President's Science Award 2013

DSI Principal Scientist, Professor Boris Luk’yanchuk was awarded the prestigious President’s Science Award 2013 for his outstanding input to the theory of laser-matter interactions and light scattering by nanoparticles, in particular to Fano resonance in plasmonic materials.

The development of modern Data Storage Technologies depends on the achievements in nanoengineering and many fields of modern physics (nanomagnetics, nanophotonics, plasmonics, spintronics, etc.). Over the past 14 years, Professor Boris Luk’yanchuk has been working with different projects related to advanced concepts in Data Storage Technologies. Working in Data Storage Institute, he published pioneering papers in the theory of laser-matter interactions, plasmonics and modern optics.

Professor Luk’yanchuk’s achievements also include novel discoveries in laser cleaning, laser thermochemistry, laser ablation, plasmonics, optics and photonics, and nanoscopy with virtual image. He investigated interference phenomena in the near field, and suggested combining "nano-Fano" with "nano-vortices" in nanostructures. This method permits to control a topological charge on a nanoscale. It has a promising application in future information technologies and quantum optics.

The President’s Science Award (PSA) is presented to research scientists and engineers in Singapore who have made outstanding contributions in basic research leading to the discovery of new knowledge or the pioneering development of scientific or engineering techniques and methods.

Click here to read the full citation.

2009 INSIC Technical Achievement Award

The superparamagnetic limit is a phenomenon that will eventually halt storage densities from their seemingly never-ending growth. It manifests itself in the form of a tradeoff between thermal stability, writeability and signal to noise ratio (SNR). This media trilemma means that one of the three would give way as the bit size is reduced, eventually preventing further areal density growth.

Two-dimensional magnetic recording (TDMR) is one of the proposed solutions for increasing recording densities towards 10Tb/in2. The advantage of TDMR is that it relies on a redesign of the channel to combat the superparamagnetic limit, which is expected to be a less costly option than rebuilding the heads or media. To explore the viability of TDMR, channel models, detectors and codes for a 2D magnetic recording system need to be put together in a comprehensive 2D simulation.At DSI, a granular media channel model has been designed to mimic how bits are written onto and readback from the medium.

For his research in Two Dimensional Magnetic Recording Channel simulations, INSIC awarded Dr Chan Kheong Sann with the INSIC Technical Achievement Award 2009. Kheong Sann was recognized specifically for his outstanding contributions in the development of the extremely high density recording (EHDR) Software Channel simulator for evaluation of coding & detection techniques for standard and two-dimensional magnetic recording in the INSIC EHDR Program.

INSIC is an international consortium based in the US. It counts many industry players such as Seagate, HGST, WD, HP, IBM, Samsung, Sun Microsystems, just to name a few, as their members, as well as top universities and research organizations from the US, UK, Korea, Singapore and many more.

ISPS 2008 Best Track Paper Award

Faster speed and greater storage capacity are two attributes that are highly desirable for computers. Many researchers around the world are working towards optimising these capabilities. However, the improvement of either one of these two attributes could cause the other to deteriorate. A more detailed explanation is given below.

In order to provide greater storage capacity, more and more bits of information must be squeezed onto the limited and fixed physical size of a hard disk. Yet for computers to be faster, the disk has to spin at a faster speed. When the disk spins faster, there is greater turbulence which would affect the accuracy of the read write head. With more bits being squashed closer together on the disk to increase storage capacity, the margin for error of the read write head must be close to nil.

Data Storage Institute (DSI) researchers have been working on reducing this margin of error for the read write head in order to facilitate ultrahigh density storage. A recent paper described a model that simulates the flow-induced vibration caused by two co-rotating disks. Through this simulation, the researchers then proposed a method that can suppress the flow induced vibration by 50%. This proposal by the Mechatronics and Recording Channel (MRC) division, titled ‘Mitigation of Flow Induced Vibration of Head Gimbal Assembly’ won them a ‘Best Track Paper Award’ at the 18th ASME Annual Conference on Information Storage and Processing Systems (ISPS).

The impact of this finding would help to facilitate the construction of faster computers with greater storage capacity.

The ASME ISPS is an annual conference that is held at Santa Clara University, CA, USA. The ISPS is the division of American Society of Mechanical Engineers and it focuses primarily on Information Storage and Processing Systems. Relevant technologies in the conference include magnetic and optical storage systems, information processing systems and intelligent machines.

2008 Tan Kah Kee Young Inventors' Award

In this day and age, mobile gadgets are becoming more and more essential to everyday life. From MP3/MP4 players to cellular phones to digital cameras, almost everyone, young or old, can be seen with at least one or the other. Each of these mobile gadgets would not be possible without the use of FLASH, a type of non-volatile memory (NVM), which stores their data. As electronic gadgets continue to follow the trend of miniaturisation, FLASH technology would be unable to keep up with the trend due to its physical limitations beyond 32nm. Hence, a replacement technology for FLASH is needed. A prime candidate to replace FLASH is the phase-change random access memory (PCRAM).

PCRAM hold the near NVM characteristics prevalent in FLASH technology and additional properties such as fast speed, long endurance and high scalability. However, despite all these advantageous attributes, PCRAM requires further reduction of its operating current in order to be commercialised.

Tan Chun Chia, an A*STAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) scholar and a research engineer at Data Storage Institute (DSI), in his project, ‘Breaking the limits of Phase Change Random Access Memory – The future non-volatile memory’, discovered two novel approaches to improve PCRAM memory performance, bringing PCRAM one step closer to commercialisation. He was presented with the Silver Award, at the prestigious 2008 Tan Kah Kee Young Inventors’ Awards for his efforts.

DSI congratulates Chun Chia on his success.

The annual Tan Kah Kee Young Inventors’ Award was set up in 1986 by the Tan Kah Kee Foundation to stimulate creative thinking amongst young people and help cultivate an innovative research environment in Singapore. 

2008 Engineering Faculty Research & Innovation Awards

Congratulations to the four DSI final year project (FYP) students who had distinguished themselves by clinching the Merit Award in this year Faculty of Engineering FYP Research & Innovation Award.

Considering the intense competition from the large pool of FYP students in the Faculty of Engineering and the limited number of awards given out each year, DSI is happy that their FYP projects were considered innovative and novel enough to receive significant endorsement and interest from the judges.

The winners and their respective DSI supervisors are as follows:

Student   Supervisor/s (DSI)   Title of Project
Chan Ching Weng  A/P Yeo Yee Chia
Dr Shi Luping
Dr Zhao Rong 
Development of PCRAM Devices for Improved Lifetime Performances  
Woo Bo Sheng   Dr Hong Minghui
Dr Xu Baoxi
Dr Yuan Hongxing  
Fabrication of Lens Sheet for 3-D Display 
Loke Kok Leong Desmond   Dr Adeyeye Adekunle Olusole
Dr Wang Weijie
Dr Shi Luping  
Nanoscaling of Phase Change Memory for High Density Data Storage  
Li Yang  Dr Hong Minghui 
Laser Fabrication of Metallic Nano-Structures and its Plasmonic Effect  

The Award was set up in 1987 to encourage innovation and creativity in students’ final year projects. A total of 21 awards were presented this year.

2008 Singapore Science & Engineering Fair Award

After watching sci-fi movies like ‘The Fifth Element’, many have wondered if levitating vehicles would be a scientific possibility in the future. Four DSI attachment students under the A*STAR-MOE Student Attachment program were curious enough to attempt analysing the principle of physics behind the fiction and were awarded the Bronze Award for their efforts at the Singapore Science & Engineering Fair (SSEF).

The plasma thruster has been considered a promising design for levitating vehicles by many researchers as it flies without moving parts, provides great stability and ease in manipulation of the structure’s direction and velocity. Yuan Shangguan (RJC), Soe Min (ACJC), Wang Qinxia (RJC) and Yap Ching Hiong (JJC), in their project “Utilising Plasma Effects to Realize Plasma Thruster”, applied the plasma effect to investigate the self-levitation of the plasma thruster and to find the most efficient design for the device. In the project, the students not only applied knowledge learnt during their secondary school days, they were also trained in the skills of generating a plasma field, stability analysis, data processing and electromagnetic field analysis by their DSI supervisors.

The students’ project supervisor, Dr Bi Chao said, “All the students worked hard on the project, and realized several designs for the plasma thruster. Many researchers at the SSEF were also interested in our students’ designs and encouraged them to do further research in this field.”

The SSEF is a national competition jointly organised by the Ministry of Education (MOE), the Agency for Science, Technology & Research (A*STAR) and the Science Centre Singapore (SCS). It is affiliated to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), which is regarded as the Olympics of science competitions. Open to all secondary and pre-university students between 15 and 21 years of age it is intended for students who have conducted research over the past year to showcase their findings. Projects cover all areas of science and engineering. The awards ceremony will be held on 25 April 2008. Outstanding entries will represent Singapore in the Intel ISEF to be held on 11-16 May 2008 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.