March 1, 2023
Diving Deep into Uncovering Malaysia’s Marine Biodiversity
Malaysia is situated at the centre for maximum marine biodiversity in the world with abundance of marine resources. This unique area contains the highest number of species biodiversity of corals, fishes, and many other marine invertebrates due to several factors. One of the most important contributing factors is the North Equatorial Current that brings myriad species of planktonic larvaes and deposit them in the area of Coral Triangle through the Indonesia Through Flow enabling high biodiversity in the area. Malaysia therefore are able to utilize this high biodiversity of marine resources as cheap source of protein for food security for the nation. Apart from marine animals, the high biodiversity in the marine environment also encompasses the hydrophytes like seagrasses which forms important areas for nursery and act as effective carbon sequester to combat climate change. Malaysia’s indigenous and local cultural heritage is also very connected to the vast marine biodiversity. A lost of this biodiversity can be translated to last of cultural heritage. However, the marine ecosystem is threaten by ocean warming, acidification, and also anoxic condition that might. Steps must be taken to ensure our rich biodiversity is protected and utilize carefully for sustainability of these resource.
March 1, 2023
Robotics, IoT and Artificial Intelligence Technologies for Precision Biodiversity
This talk will explores the potential applications of Robotics, Internet of Things (IoT), and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies in the context of precision biodiversity. Precision biodiversity is an emerging field that aims to optimize biodiversity conservation and management through data-driven, evidence-based decision-making. Robotic technologies have the potential to play a significant role in precision biodiversity by enabling the collection of high-quality data on species and ecosystems. For example, autonomous drones equipped with advanced sensors can be used to survey large areas of land, collect data on species diversity, and monitor changes in ecosystems over time. Similarly, legged robots can be used to collect data on ground surroundings such as the diameters of trees using LIDAR sensors. IoT technologies can also play a critical role in precision biodiversity by providing real-time data on environmental conditions and species behaviour. For example, sensors can be used to monitor temperature, humidity, and other environmental factors that affect biodiversity, while camera trap with IoT connectivity can be used to monitor the movement patterns of animals and identify areas of high conservation value. AI technologies, such as machine learning algorithms and computer vision, can be used to analyse and interpret the vast amounts of data collected through robotic and IoT technologies. For example, AI can be used to identify patterns in flora and fauna and assist researches in classifying them. Overall, the integration of Robotics, IoT, and AI technologies has the potential to transform the field of precision biodiversity by enabling the collection of high-quality data, providing real-time monitoring of ecosystems, and supporting evidence-based decision-making in conservation management.
March 1, 2023
Contaminants of Emerging Concern in Water: The Invisible Visible
Not only do extensive human activities and environmental processes contribute to the loading and transport of emerging contaminants (i.e., contaminants of emerging concern or CECs), but relatively ineffective treatment technologies with unknown removal mechanisms also play a role, especially in water. Due to the invisible nature and properties of CECs (if known at all), there are numerous factors that can have ambivalent effects on their transportation and fate, leading to widespread contamination that poses a visible potential risk to food and drink supplies. Given the insufficient regulatory measures in place to address the whole spectrum of pollution and pollutants evolution, human exposure through drinking water consumption is a growing concern. The subsequent health risks, particularly the well-known endocrine dysfunction effects, are of great concern and can have significant political, economic, and social impacts. Effective risk communication and governance are urgently needed, given the current relatively low levels of knowledge and awareness, which may have led to an underestimation of the impacts.
March 1, 2023
Going Wild with Rice
Rice cultivars with health traits are vital to meet the dietary demands of the growing global population much affected by non-communicable diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Rice in the human diet greatly serves underprivileged populations in Asia as a means of nutritional replenishment for energy and protein as well serving as a vehicle for micronutrient fortification. The introduction of genes from wild sources is one approach to further improve yield and yield related traits besides grain quality, resistance to biotic and abiotic stress which has been demonstrated in many crop species. Besides agronomic traits, rice breeding and improvement programs play a major role in safeguarding the food environment by taking into account traits that will improve rice quality in terms of glycaemic index (GI) as well as micronutrient capacity. Successful transfer of favourable wild alleles from O. rufipogon into O. sativa and development of an advanced breeding line with high yield, disease resistance, low GI and high zinc which has been commercialised will be presented in this talk.
November 23, 2022
Conserving Endangered Specieswith Artificial Intelligence (AI)
One of the senior technology leaders with ten years of experience in research, start-up, and corporate, Dr Afnizanfaizal Abdullah is an expert in artificial intelligence, big data analytics, and cloud computing. Dr Afnizanfaizal’s first deep-tech start-up company went through a few rounds of fundraising before being acquired by a world-leading drone service company in 2022. Dr Afnizanfaizal has contributed to the talent pool by developing 200 data science and engineering professionals; coaching and mentoring early start-up funders; and helping companies and organisations to secure more than 100 million US dollars’ worth of projects. His exceptional know-how of technology in academia and business development has provided him with vast resources and established networks in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the US. Here is Dr Afnizanfaizal to show us how Artificial Intelligence can bolster existing systems to conserve endangered species.
November 23, 2022
Eyes in the Sky, Boots on the Ground – Using Satellites to Better Manage Our Forests
Dr Nur Hazwani Abdul Bahar is a conservationist and an expert in physiology of trees and crops. This member of the Young Scientist Network of ASM consistently finds new avenues to apply her expertise in broader areas of sustainable resource management and environmental conservation. In the past few years, she has been coordinating forest conservation and restoration initiatives in partnership with local and indigenous communities and the Tropical Rainforest Conservation & Research Centre. More recently, she has been exploring green/sustainable financing mechanisms for conservation, as well as landscape-level Environmental, Social, and Governance criteria. Her high-impact research projects in the areas of plant physiology, food production, and sustainability have been published in top journals and reports.
November 23, 2022
What Makes Ice Cream Smooth and Creamy?
Dr Lim Phaik Eem is a Professor and the Head of Marine Biotechnology Unit at the Institute of Ocean and Earth Sciences, Universiti Malaya. Dr Lim is one of the founders and the current secretary of the Consortium of Southeast Asian Seaweed Taxonomy (SEASTax). She has more than 20 years of research experience on seaweeds and has more than 180 publications. With her involvement in GCRF Global SeaweedSTAR programme, a problem-based multidisciplinary approach was adopted to address main issues affecting the seaweed cultivation and processing industries. With all this talk about seaweed, how does it relate to one of our favourite desserts?
November 23, 2022
The Death of Seri Gumum Dragon in Tasik Chini Basin
Professor Dato’ Dr Mohd Tajuddin Abdullah FASc is a well-recognised mammologist with great interest in both the taxonomy and ecology of mammals, especially bats and small non-volant mammals. His specialty is combining traditional taxonomy with molecular evidence in understanding evolution and bio-geography. He has registered 300 DNA sequences of bats species into the NCBI GenBank, some of which could be described as new genetic species. Apart from research work, Professor Dr Mohd Tajuddin is also actively involved in administration and management, having held positions of authority at several universities, organisations as well as research centres and panels.
June 2, 2022
Healing Our Coastlines with Ecological Engineering
Dr Chee Su Yin is a Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Global Sustainability Studies, Universiti Sains Malaysia. Her research interests lie in developing new ways of making space for nature in human-dominated environments and using nature as solutions to environmental crises in the marine realm. Dr Chee and her team has a patent filed for the invention of eco-concrete for use in terrestrial and marine environments. Her team has been awarded with a Gold Medal and a Special Award from Haller Pro Inventio Foundation Poland for this invention. Dr Chee is a YSN-ASM affiliate, the Northern Node in the Malaysia Society of Marine Sciences, and a member of Water Watch Penang. Dr Chee will elaborate how ecological engineering can be instrumental in repairing our ailing coastlines.