Press Release

Faculty of Science holds the 60th Anniversary Distinguished Lecture by Professor Vivian Yam


Professor Alexander Wai (4th right), Professor Ching-fai Ng (4th left), Professor Rick Wong (3rd right), Professor Jiming Liu (3rd left) and members of the University take photo with Professor Vivian Yam (middle).

Professor Yam shares her insights on the control of supramolecular assembly.

The Faculty of Science held the 60th Anniversary Distinguished Lecture entitled “From Molecular Design To Control of Supramolecular Assembly, Nanostructures and Functional Properties for Energy, Materials and Biomedical Applications” on 20 June 2022.  The on-site and on-line hybrid lecture was given by Professor Vivian Wing-wah Yam, Dean of Science (Interim), and Philip Wong Wilson Wong Professor in Chemistry and Energy, Chair Professor of Chemistry of The University of Hong Kong.


More than 170 participants including Professor Alexander Wai, President and Vice-Chancellor; Professor Ching-fai Ng, President Emeritus; Professor Rick Wong, Interim Provost; Professor Jiming Liu, Dean of Science; as well as academics, alumni and students attended the lecture.


In the presentation, Professor Yam illustrated the molecular design, synthesis and applications of metal-ligand chromophoric complexes. Her lecture started from platinum(II) complex. Several Pt(II)-terpyridine complexes can be packed with each other via PtPt as well as π-π interactions, which can be influenced by several factors, like involvement of organic solvent, change of temperature, and changes of ionic strength. The changes of those aforementioned interactions among Pt(II)-complexes will lead to the change of color or luminescence, which can be employed as potential sensors or markers for indicating chemical and biological processes, like VOC detection, RNA detection, nucleolus imaging and RNA synthesis inhibitor screening. Professor Yam also discussed the self-assembly, luminescence properties and morphologies of these Pt(II)-based supramolecules. Besides Pt(II), other metal-ligand complexes are also explored. For example, gold is the other potential target for ligand-containing complexes due to its higher abundance (cheaper) than other precious metals, environmentally more benigned, and its promising potential for OLED applications.


Professor Yam’s research interests include inorganic/organometallic chemistry, supramolecular chemistry, photophysics and photochemistry, and metal-based molecular functional materials.  In March this year, she was elected by the General Assembly of The International Organization for Chemical Sciences in Development (IOCD) as its next President, following the footsteps of two top-notch scientists and former Presidents - Nobel Laureates Professors Glenn T SEABORG (USA), Founding President, and Jean-Marie LEHN (France), Immediate Past President.