Top-10 outstanding scientific-technological events in Vietnam in 2020

The Vietnamese Science & Technology Journalists’ Club yesterday announced the result of the voting for the 10 most significant scientific-technological events in 2020. These events happen in various aspects of state policies, social science, natural science, research implementation, international collaboration, and scientist honoring.

Representatives of the top-10 scientific-technological events in the ceremony. (Photo: SGGP)
Representatives of the top-10 scientific-technological events in the ceremony. (Photo: SGGP)

This year’s election attracted the participation of over 50 journalists in the field of science-technology coming from several local and national news agencies.

1. ‘National Digital Transformation Program until 2025, with a Vision to 2030’, approved by the Prime Minister.

On June 3, 2020, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc signed Decision No.749 to approve the ‘National Digital Transformation Program until 2025, with a Vision to 2030’. The program aims to turn Vietnam into a prosperous and stable digital country, becoming the pioneer in piloting cutting edge technologies and models. It is expected to basically reform state administrative tasks in the nation, as well as business and daily activities of the community.

The ultimate goal is to create a safe, humane digital environment for the establishment of a digital government, economy, and society, while equipping Vietnamese digital enterprises with necessary skills for globalization.

2. Prominent successes in research about SARS-CoV-2.

On February 7, 2020, the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology (NIHE) announced the successful culture and isolation of SARS-CoV-2 virus in the laboratory environment. This is the premise for the development of test kits and corresponding vaccine in the future, as well as creating more effective prevention methods against this virus.

On March 5, 2020, the Ministry of Science and Technology held a press release to announce the research result for real-time RT PCR test kit to detect SARS-CoV-2 virus, developed by Vietnam Military Medical University and Viet A Corp. At that time, Vietnam was one of the rare nations to be successful in producing this kind of kit.

3. Successful development of the technology for flight control and balloon retrieval in the stratosphere

This is project VT-CN.04/17-20, a part of the national space program in the period from 2016-2020. Named ‘Research to Approach the Technology to Use Balloons in the Stratosphere, integrated with Information Transceivers, to Monitor, Give Direction, Rescue, and Calculate Physical Parameters in the Atmosphere’, the project was led by Associate Prof. Dr. Pham Hong Quang from the Center for Informatics and Computing.

The project uses an IoT network for sea and forest rescuing tasks, the monitoring of off-shore fishing boats, flood, land slide, and forest fire information collection.

4. Introduction of the final draft of the Vietnamese History released.

On November 12, 2020, the Ministry of Science and Technology held a ceremony to receive the final draft of the Vietnamese History in Hanoi.

This is the result of the research project ‘Compiling the Vietnamese History books’, launched since 2015 and with 30 volumes. The project was financed by the National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (NAFOSED) under the model of end-product order.

The project attracted the participation of nearly 300 scientists in various educational institutes nationwide.

5. First successful 5G call by Viettel’s self-made equipment

On January 17, 2020, Viettel made the first video call using the 5G technology installed on gNodeB transceiver, its self-developed device, including both software and hardware.

This has marked the ability of Vietnam to master 5G technology. Viettel, hence, is the sixth in the world that can manufacture 5G supported equipment.

6. Bluezone app widely installed on smart devices in Vietnam

On April 18, 2020, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Information & Communications officially launched the app Bluezone to detect Covid-19 in the community.

This app exploits Bluetooth low energy technology for navigation. It allows smartphones detect one another within the range of 2m and record these contacts. Therefore, if one user is an F0, a positive case of SARS-CoV-2, thanks to the saved database, warnings will be sent to people who had close contact with that patient, along with proper instruction to receive necessary medical help.

The app is co-developed by Memozone, VNPT, MobiFone and Bkav. Until November 2020, there have been over 23 million Vietnamese installing it onto their smart devices.

7. Completion of Hoan Kiem Lake’s embankment using advanced technology

On August 20, 2020, Vietnam Science and Technology Joint Stock Company (Busadco) – the construction contractor of Hoan Kiem Lake’s embankment – formally announced the completion of the project at the foot of The Huc Bridge (in Hanoi). The whole embankment is nearly 1,500m long, and took 65 full days to finish, 2 months ahead of schedule.

Remarkably, this construction project applies the non-metallic reinforcement technology as previously done in the project cluster ‘Synchronous Building of Urban Technical Infrastructure System in Rural Areas to Fight against Disasters and Cope with Climate Change’, which won the Ho Chi Minh Science-Technology Awards in 2016.

8. Participation of Vietnamese scientists in experiment published in Nature Journal

For the first time, Vietnamese physicists are recognized as affiliation of a breakthrough research project that is published in Nature Journal.

The international experiment, named T2K and described in the article ‘Constraint on the Matter–antimatter Symmetry-violating Phase in Neutrino Oscillations’, appeared in Nature on April 16, 2020.

It is a collaboration of 600 physicists and engineers from 12 nations and was carried out in Japan. The Vietnamese representatives come from the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research in Science and Education (IFIRSE), located in Quy Nhon City of Binh Dinh Province. This organization works on its own without the financial allocation from the state budget.

The experiment is about signals to violate the charge-conjugation and parity-reversal (CP) symmetry in neutrino oscillations (a quantum mechanics phenomenon), based on data collected from 2010 to 2018.

9. Successful operation to separate twins born conjoined at the pelvis

On July 15, 2020, a twelve-hour operation to separate the twins Truc Nhi – Dieu Nhi was performed successfully. Nearly 100 doctors from all over the nation took part in that operation.

This success has demonstrated the improvement and level of the Vietnamese healthcare level.

The two twin girls had been born in Hung Vuong Hospital and monitored in one year in HCMC Children Hospital under special nutrition care to prepare for this vital operation. When they reached 13 months and weighed 15kilos, having normal health indexes, the operation was carried out.

This is the second complex operation to separate twins in Vietnam, the first being the case of Viet – Duc 32 years ago.

10. Asian Innovation Award 2020 delivered to Associate Prof. Dr. Do Van Manh

Hitachi Global Foundation, established in 1967, introduced the Asian Innovation Awards in 2020 to honor notable achievements of individuals and teams in science and technology that greatly contribute to the development of the community.

On October 30, 2020, Hitachi Global Foundation decided to deliver this award to Associate Prof. Dr. Do Van Manh from the Institute of Environmental Technology (under Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology).

Dr. Manh is highly appreciated for his research on the implementations of advanced biogas to exploit sludge from beer and sugar manufacturing plants to produce energy and organic fertilizer. The research clearly contributes to environment protection and sustainable development for the Central Highlands and South Central area.

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