Questionnaires for Global Top Ten Engineering Achievements

Dear Professor,


Greetings from Engineering, the flagship journal of the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAE)!


To draw global attention to engineering science and technology and promote its progress and innovation, CAE launched the election of the Global Top Ten Engineering Achievements in 2021.


The Achievements refer to major engineering projects or significant engineering and technological breakthroughs with global influence in recent years, which represent the highest level and lead the trend of the times in their respective fields.


To be elected, the Achievement shall be endowed with the specific performance as follows.


1. Significant breakthroughs in engineering technology. The core technology of the proposed Achievement shall be a pioneering breakthrough and/or solution to long-standing bottlenecks and difficulties, or a huge improvement on single or multiple performances as compared with previous similar projects.

2. Outstanding innovations in system integration. The proposed Achievement shall have distinctive innovation characteristics in technology integration and/or system integration, realizing safety, precision and green of project, and/or resource allocation and organizational management in major projects.

3. Tremendous benefits in economy and society. The proposed Achievement shall act as an important part in driving industrial development and promoting social benefits. It not only promotes high-quality economic and social development, but also brings benefits to human production and living.


The election of the Global Top Ten Engineering Achievements in 2021 shall be an accomplished result and accepted separately or jointly by multiple countries five years prior to the election year (2016‒2020).


In view of your outstanding influence in related fields of engineering science and technology, we would like to invite you to answer the questionnaire about "Global Top Ten Engineering Achievements". Please send us back the questionnaire forms before 25th August 2021.


We look forward to your reply.

*In the following list of 16 candidates, please select five options that you think are most consistent with the meaning of engineering achievements,Click the arrow on the right side of the picture to view the introduction.

AlphaGo (2016)
AlphaGo is an artificial intelligence application which was developed by Google's DeepMind team. AlphaGo used a Monte Carlo search algorithm to find its moves based on knowledge previously acquired by machine learning, specifically by an artificial neural network (a deep learning method) by extensive training, both from human and computer play. In 2016, AlphaGo beat human contestants without handicap in the board game Go. Another artificial intelligence program developed by Google's DeepMind is AlphaFold. It performed predictions of the protein spatial structure in 2020 and its accuracy was as high as 98.5%. The development of AlphaGo and AlphaFold has greatly promoted the rise of a new round of artificial intelligence, especially in driving the application of models and methods such as deep learning and extensive training, and transforming from perceptual intelligence to cognitive intelligence.
The Fifth-Generation Mobile Communication Technology (5G) (2019)
5G achieved many technological breakthroughs, such as massive MIMO, channel coding, ultra wideband, and new radio frequencies. It assures that the mobile communication requirements in some typical scenarios of enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB), ultra-reliability low-latency (URLLC) and/or massive machine type communication (mMTC) can be met. The commercialization of 5G facilitates the application of artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and big data technologies. It has profoundly changed the lifestyle of people, and accelerated the informatization and digitization of society. The first version of 5G specifications, Release 15, was completed in June 2018. As of 2019, South Korea and China were the first countries to deploy 5G base stations commercially and extensively. As 5G has drawn attention from the global mobile communication industry and become the focus in global digital transformation, major economies worldwide are racing to accelerate the development and deployment of 5G.
Development and Application of CRISPR/Cas9 Gene Editing System (2020)
A new generation of gene editing technology called CRISPR/Cas9 was developed in 2012. The CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing technology is considered highly significant in biotechnology and medicine as it allows for the genomes to be edited in vivo with extremely high precision, cheaply, and with ease. CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing technology has been the mainstream nowadays in gene editing system and it has been seen as a significant revolution in molecular life science. Since it has been widely used in the fields of biology, medicine, agriculture, and environment, it shows the huge potential in gene therapy, relative gene screening and detection, tumor treatment, transformation of animals and plants, and prevention of pathogenic microorganisms. The development of the technique earned Jennifer Doudna and Emmanuelle Charpentier the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2020.
Mars InSight (2018)
Mars Insight, a Mars geophysical probe, was launched by NASA of the United States on May 5, 2018, and successfully landed on Mars on November 26 of the same year. InSight performs three major experiments using SEIS, HP3, and RISE. SEIS is a very sensitive seismometer, measuring vibrations; HP3 involves a burrowing probe to measure the thermal properties of the subsurface; and RISE uses the radio communication equipment on the lander and on Earth to measure the overall movement of planet Mars and reveal the size and density of its core. As the first rover in human history that dedicates to exploring the internal structure of Mars, it gives human a deep insight into the size, thickness, density, and overall structure of Mars' core, mantle, and crust, as well as the rate at which heat escapes from the planet’s interior. InSight will assist human to understand the processes that shaped the rocky planets (including Earth) of the inner Solar System over four billion years ago.
Gotthard Base Tunnel (2016)
The Gotthard Base Tunnel (GBT) is a railway tunnel through the Alps in Switzerland. It lies at the heart of the Rhine–Alps corridor, from Erstfeld in the north to Bodio in the south. The tunnel consists of two parallel single-track tubes with a diameter of 8.8–9.5 m, which are connected by crosscuts at about 300 m intervals. With a total length of 57 km and a maximum depth of 2438.4 m, GBT is the longest and deepest tunnel in the world. As of December 11, 2016, GBT has been an integral part of the new timetable of the Swiss Federal Railways between Zurich and Lugano, and is in full operation. The success of the GBT construction contributes a lot to European transport policy and brings European countries closer together.
Akademik Lomonosov Nuclear Power Station (2020)
Academician Lomonosov nuclear power station is a non-self-propelled power barge that operates as the first floating nuclear power station in the world. It has a length of 144 m and width of 30 m. For power generation, the floating vessel is equipped with a power unit featuring two 35 MW KLT-40 nuclear reactors. The main function of Academician Lomonosov nuclear power station is to supply electricity to cities, factories, and offshore gas and oil rigs in remote areas of Russia. It took about 13 years from construction to commercial operation and the plant was fully commissioned on May 22, 2020. Moreover, as the first small civilian reactor worldwide that was put into operation, it has become a significant model. The official and commercial operation of the Academician Lomonosov floating nuclear power plant is expected to promote the development of multipurpose application of nuclear energy and facilitate the recovery of global market for nuclear energy application.
Public Health Epidemic Prevention and Control in the Fight against COVID-19 (2020)
Since the outbreak and spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) at the end of 2019, global public health and socioeconomic orders were in serious crisis. It is a grave challenge for mankind. Countries worldwide took active countermeasures, including keeping social distance, urging people to wear masks in public places, and establishing a community-based monitoring mechanism. China established a nationwide prevention and control system to take comprehensive measures, showing its responsibility for safeguarding the world public health security.
Extreme Ultraviolet Lithography System (2020)
As semiconductor geometries tend to grow smaller, extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography technology becomes vital for the precise and efficient production of semiconductors; it can reduce the minimum process node during transistor manufacturing down to 7 nm, 5 nm, or even 3 nm. The fifth generation of EUV lithography platform uses 13.5 nm EUV light, generated by a tin-based plasma source, to expose 300 nm wafers with a max exposure field size of 26 mm ?33 mm. ASML, a Dutch company, is the only one in the world that can produce EUV lithography system currently. Its latest-generation lithography system NXE:3600D is equipped with reflective projection optics with a numerical aperture (NA) of 0.33, supporting EUV volume production at the 5 and 3 nm Logic nodes and leading-edge DRAM nodes.
Hybrid Rice (2020)
Hybrid rice is the product of crossbreeding two genetically dissimilar parents and it possesses the best qualities of both parents. The cultivation of hybrid rice is one of the major achievements of modern agricultural science. Hybrid rice can be divided into three categories of strategic development: three-line, two-line, and one-line methods. The core of these systems is the large-scale propagation of pure male sterile seeds that can be used for the large-scale production of hybrid seeds. The third-generation hybrid breeding technique is superior to the three-line and two-line systems. It solves the problems of the limited access to germplasm in the three-line system and the instability of the male sterile line strands in the two-line system. In November 2020, the predicted yield of the third-generation hybrid rice was 1530.76 kg per mu. The hybrid rice plants produced by the third-generation technology are high-yield and disease-resistant. It is an innovation in agriculture as well as an efficient measure in the fight against world hunger and food insecurity.
Hong Kong–Zhuhai–Macao Bridge (2018)
The Hong Kong–Zhuhai–Macao Bridge (HZMB) connects China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), Zhuhai city, and Macao SAR and is the longest cross-sea bridge in the world with a length of 55 km. Construction of the HZMB project began on December 15, 2009, the main structure was finished on July 7, 2017, the entire project was inspected and accepted on February 6, 2018, and its opening ceremony was held on October 23, 2018. The HZMB project features as large scale, short time limit, advanced techniques, complex processes, multiple disciplines, strict requirements, and numerous difficulties. HZMB has great performance in road designing, service period, shock resistance, flood fighting, and many other aspects. In addition. HZMB was commended as “Mount Everest” by experts in the bridge industry and praised as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by The Guardian.
Fuxing Standard Electric Multiple Unit (2016)
The Fuxing standard electric multiple unit (EMU) is a series of high-speed EMU trains operated by China Railway Highspeed, which owns the independent intellectual property rights. In July 2016, two Chinese standard EMUs completed a train intersection and coupled operation test at a speed of 420 km/h, setting the highest intersection speed record in the world. In September 2017, the Fuxing EMU was commercially operated at a speed of 350 km/h, making the Chinese high speed railway network the fastest in the world. In December 2019, the Fuxing intelligent EMU was put into operation, achieving automatic driving at a speed of 350 km/h for the first time in the world. By the end of 2020, 1036 Fuxing EMUs had run a total of 836 million km and carried 827 million passengers. The Fuxing EMU has won widespread praise from the public for its excellent technical performance, high level of safety, good reliability, and superior riding comfort. Moreover, the technology and application of Fuxing EMUs promotes the development of global high speed railway industry.
Ultra-high Voltage Direct-Current Transmission Project (2020)
The ultra-high voltage direct-current transmission (UHVDC) is a project to form ultra-high voltage grids by transmitting ultra-high voltage direct current; it aims to realize the synchronous interconnection of regional power grids. The ?00 kV UHVDC line is suitable for long-distance cross-region highpower transmission. In December 2020, the world's first ?800 kV high-voltage multi-terminal flexible DC transmission system was put into operation. Compared with the traditional high-voltage direct-current transmission, UHVDC has a higher DC-link voltage and larger capacity. The UHVDC transmission project has overcome many core technologies such as process control of large-diameter rubber-impregnated paper capacitor cores, and casing design under the action of multi-physics fields of electricity, heat, and force. For the first time, the transformer will enable a high-voltage direct-current transmission with low losses over a record distance of 3284 kilometers with a transmission capacity of 12 gigawatts.
Three Gorges Hydroelectric Power Station (2020)
The three gorges hydroelectric power station is a core project for developing and protecting China's Yangtze River and it is the largest hydroelectric power plant worldwide. Made of concrete and steel, the total length of this gravity dam axis is 2309.5 m, and the crest elevation and the maximum dam height are 185m and 181 m, respectively. The normal storage level of the dam is 175 m above sea level, the dam is about 667 km in length on average, its total surface covers 1084 km2, and the total storage capacity below flood level is 45.04 billion m3. Construction began on the dam in 1994, and power generation and shipping began in 2003. The three gorges hydroelectric power project was completed in 2009 and accepted in 2020. Several technology breakthroughs were achieved, including interception and cofferdam, hydraulic structure construction, excavation and support in high slope of ship lock, ship lock hydraulics, sediment control, and flood control dispatching. The three gorges hydroelectric power station is beneficial to irrigation, electricity generation, flood control, drinking water supply, navigation, and recreation. Moreover, it has brought huge social and economic benefits and is conducive to energy conservation and emission reduction.
China's Lunar Exploration Program (2019)
China's lunar exploration (also known as Chang'e project), started on March 1, 2003; it is the first lunar exploration program launched by China National Space Administration (CNSA). China's lunar exploration is planned to develop through three phase within 20 years: unmanned lunar exploration, manned lunar landing, and establishment of a lunar base. The Chang'e-4 probe made the first-ever soft landing on the Von Karman Crater in the South Pole-Aitken Basin on the far side of the moon in 2019. Moreover, it is the first time in human history that made the telemetry and control communication between Earth and the far side of the moon come true. The Chang'e-5 probe was successfully launched and returned to the ground with lunar samples in 2020. It achieved five “firsts” in Chinese space history, including the sampling and encapsulating from extraterrestrial objects, ignited takeoff and precisely orbiting on extraterrestrial objects, unmanned rendezvous and docking in lunar orbit and transfer of samples, re-entry and return with lunar samples at approximately second cosmic velocity, and establishment of a storage, analysis, and research system for lunar samples. The Chang'e project has realized very-low-frequency astronomical observation on the back of the moon, obtained the first geological profile of the front and back of the moon, and made great contributions in humankind’s peaceful utilization of outer space.
Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (2020)
The five-hundred-meter aperture spherical radio telescope (FAST), nicknamed Chinese Tianyan, is located in the Dawodang depression, a natural basin in Southwest China. It is the world's largest filled-aperture and most sensitive radio telescope. FAST is an Arecibo-type antenna with three outstanding aspects: the karst depression used as the site, which is large to host the 500-meter telescope and deep to allow a zenith angle of 40 degrees; the active main reflector, comprised of 4500 panels, correcting for spherical aberration on the ground to achieve a full polarization and a wide band without involving complex feed systems; and the light-weight feed cabin driven by cables and servomechanism plus a parallel robot as a secondary adjustable system to move with high precision. The FAST was first proposed in 1994, and until the day on September 25, 2016, the first observations are being done without the active primary reflector, configuring it in a fixed shape and using the Earth's rotation to scan the sky. It was officially opened to the world on January 11, 2020. Being the most sensitive single dish radio telescope, the FAST enhances mankind's eyesight to explore the unknown areas of the universe deeply and widely, such as surveying the neutral hydrogen in the Milky Way and other galaxies, detecting faint pulsars, looking for the first shining stars, and hearing the possible signals from other civilizations.
Research, Development, and Application of COVID-19 Vaccine (2020)
The pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has become the most formidable challenge to humanity in this century. The research and development of COVID-19 vaccines has been a topic of critical importance in the entire international community. Since the year of 2020, five main types of COVID-19 vaccines were developed concurrently in the world, and they are inactivated virus vaccines, RNA (mRNA or DNA) vaccine, recombinant protein-based vaccines, adenovirus vector vaccine, and live-attenuated virus vaccines. The whole development process of COVID-19 vaccines has been reduced from the conventional 15 years to about 10–18 months, which creates the history records in vaccine development. Besides, mRNA vaccine was put into use on a large scale for the first time. As of June 30, 2021 Beijing time, over three billion doses of vaccines have been administered globally. In the absence of effective antiviral drugs, inactivated virus vaccines, mRNA vaccines, and other COVID-19 vaccines provide a strong guarantee for the global epidemic prevention and control. In addition, the vaccines play a significant role in preventing infection, especially in reducing serious cases and deaths.

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