HKUST and Foshan are closely collaborating in innovation and R&D activities. In 2010, HKUST and Nanhai District Government signed an agreement and established the HKUST LED-FPD Technology R&D Center at Foshan (FSC). The mission of FSC is to develop and transfer advanced light-emitting diode (LED) and flat panel display (FPD) technologies for relevant industrial partners in the Guangdong Province. The achievements of FSC are well recognized by the community. In March 2018, HKUST and the Nanhai District Government of the Foshan City has signed an “Extended Agreement” to create more collaboration opportunities. The HKUST Nanhai Innovation Center (NIC) was then established in October 2018 within the Clear Water Bay campus of HKUST. The Nanhai District Government provided NIC with an annual grant of RMB 14 millions to operate the Nanhai HKUST Projects and the HKUST 1M$ Entrepreneurship Competition Foshan Regional Competition.

The collaboration makes tangible impacts to the industries and economy of region. In February 2019, the Foshan City Government expressed their intention to further upscale the collaborations between HKUST and the Nanhai District Government to include the Foshan City Government. A tri-partite memorandum of understanding was signed between HKUST, Nahani District Government and Foshan City Government to define the scope and the framework. In November 2019 a new Foshan-HKUST Agreement was signed which superseded the previous Extended Agreement. Under the Foshan-HKUST Agreement, the scope of collaborations was expanded. As an upgrade from NIC, the HKUST Foshan Research Institute for Smart Manufacturing (FRISM) was established in February 2020 with more funding from both the Foshan City Government and the Nanhai District Government. The missions of FRISM include:

  • managing Foshan HKUST Projects program with an emphasis on technical areas related to smart manufacturing
  • organizing HKUST 1M$ Entrepreneurship Competition Foshan Regional Competition
  • assisting HKUST Foshan Center for Technology and Commercialization (located in Foshan under FSC) on matters related to incubation and entrepreneurship
  • identifying technologies and talents in HK and mainland China that are suitable for Foshan
  • coordinating activities and events to promote the exchange between Foshan and Hong Kong

The Foshan City Government and the Nanhai District Government annually fund FRSIM and FSC with RMB 50M. Foshan-HKUST Projects and HKUST 1M$ Entrepreneurship Competition Foshan Regional Competition are two major programs organized by FRSIM and FSC. Foshan-HKUST Projects Program supports more than 10 R&D projects and 5 start-up teams every year. There are more than 130 teams participated in the 1M$ Entrepreneurship Competition. These two programs will substantially evaluate the technology level and attract talents to the region.

FRISM also serves has a bridge between academia and industry. We offer professional services and trainings to companies and industries. We cooperate with companies on technology transfer and R&D projects related to smart manufacturing. We provide supports to the research activities in the university as well. Our research areas include:

  • Industry 4.0
  • Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)
  • Integration and Packaging of Embedded Systems
  • Advanced Human-Machine Interfaces
  • Smart Sensors, Automated Optical Inspection (AOI), Location Detection Technologies
  • 3D Printing and Rapid Prototyping
  • Industrial Data Analysis