Chua Kian Jon Ernest’s Research Group

Our group focuses on developing novel solutions to address existing research gaps and challenging problems in biothermal therapies, cooling and dehumidification, and waste energy conversion systems


Cryo-Heat Transfer Processes

For biothermal therapies, we specifically work on cryosurgery and heat therapy of solid tumors and have contributed fundamentally while developing unique treatment plans for irregularly shaped tumors residing in the vicinity of complex vascular networks. Additionally, I have contributed markedly to new hybrid thermal treatment of solid tumors incorporating cryosurgery and radio-frequency ablation particularly for complex irregularly-shaped tumors where standalone cryosurgery faces pronounced limitations.


Heat and Mass Transfer Processes

Our work on innovative cooling and dehumidification has contributed to game-changing air conditioning technologies. In terms of removing moisture from humid air, I lead a solid team to design and engineer the best performing membrane dehumidifiers in terms of permeability and selectivity followed by breakthrough polymeric desiccants that have sorption capacity of 4 to 5 times greater than commercial grade-A silica-gel with markedly reduced regeneration temperature of 40 to 45oC. In terms of water-based sensible heat cooling systems, I lead another team to develop counter-flow dew-point coolers that are 20 to 25% better than existing commercial water-based coolers.



Energy Conversion Systems

On larger-scale system-level research, my team and I have contributed to flow and operating algorithms, and design of heat-driven systems for cogeneration (power and heat), trigeneration (power, heat, and cooling), quad-generation (power, heat, cooling, and potable water production) coupled with unique heat recovery applications. Several patents on heat-driven absorption and adsorption technologies coupled with heat recovery have been filed in several countries under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) arrangement.


(a) Quad-generation system harvesting the waste heat-energy from the microturbine to simultaneously produce electricity, hot water/steam, chilled water and potable drinking water; and (b) Quad-generation system harvesting waste ultra-cold energy during LNG to CNG conversion.