Chung Han Chua
United World College of South East Asia (2000-2012). University of Nottingham (2012-2016).
Master of Engineering - Mechanical Engineering Bio-engineering Stream
Summer Intern at Singapore Technologies Kinetics. Research Intern at the AM&3DP Research Group.
PhD Post Graduate at the University of Nottingham
University of Nottingham – Centre for Additive Manufacturing
Han the hand handler. Inept at scaling walls and purveyor of anime.
I have been living in Nottingham for the last 6 years. I’m originally from Malaysia but grew up in Singapore.
Recently started rock climbing which has been great fun. I’m not very good at it now as half the time I just throw myself up the wall and skip tons of steps in between.
I’m very much into Japanese culture, food and entertainment. I highly recommend everyone to watch Kimi no Nawa (Your Name), it’s a great movie with an even better soundtrack.
I make hands of varying quality.
I am currently undertaking my PhD in Additive Manufacturing and 3D Printing with the Centre for Additive Manufacturing located at the University of Nottingham.
I have worked on several projects regarding the development and research of robotic hands for people (upper-limb prostheses). I initially started with the design of robotic hands where I was part of a team that built a robotic hand that was controlled through a motion sensor. The type of sensor you would find in a Xbox Kinect. Then I moved on into the control system where I added a camera to the robotic hand so it could decide for itself how it should behave in certain situations.
Now I am comparing the effectiveness of different prosthesis designs through the use of a virtual simulator. Physical testing is time consuming and difficult, so my research aims to develop a method to evaluate them digitally which is cheaper and faster. Eventually I hope to develop a software that can optimise the design of a prosthetic for a given task.
My Typical Day
A constant battle against code.
I run simulations of prosthetic hands performing a range of movements, such as picking up cup or opening a door handle. I attempt to make these as realistic as possible but there are lots of little things which causes my simulation to break. Such as forgetting to define what friction is where everything starts sliding around indefinitely. Not defining collision physics correctly and having objects fly off into the distance. The majority of my day is making sure these problems don’t happen.
I then use the results from these simulations and some calculations to quantify their performance. Which then allows me to rank the performance of different prosthetic hand designs.
What I'd do with the money
Let students experience using a prosthetic hand
I’ll use the prize money to purchase 3D printing materials and manufacture various prosthetic hand designs. Which I will ask groups of students to assemble and perform some basic tasks with the prosthetic hand. Such as grabbing common objects and opening doors. In order to give them an understanding of how someone using a prosthetic may feel. Once they have had a feel for their “hands”, let them try an assessment procedure which is a series of timed tasks. Rank their times and allow them to compete for the fastest times.
-Understand the current state of 3D printed prosthetics
-Gain an insight of how people using hand prosthetics interact with everyday objects
-Experience how hand assessment evaluations are taken
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Ordered, Precise, Over-thinker
What's the best thing you've done in your career?
Built a robotic hand which I could control by making different hand gestures.
What or who inspired you to follow your career?
I came across a video of a mechanical heart which made me want to build one myself.
What was your favourite subject at school?
What did you want to be after you left school?
Bioengineer - I wanted to build hearts.
Were you ever in trouble at school?
Nope. Well, nothing I want to admit to...
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
Scandal (a Japanese band)
What's your favourite food?
Japanese - chirashi. Kinda like an assortment of sushi but all mixed into a bowl.
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Kayaking around Pulau Tioman (some islands in Malaysia)
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
1. Ability to control the density of objects I come into contact with. 2. Ability to manipulate digital data at will and update all servers accordingly. 3. Have the blueprints to manufacture a fail-safe teleporter.
Tell us a joke.