Prof. Chai Siang Piao

Deputy Head of School (Research)
School of Engineering
+603 5514 6234
Room 5-4-27

Personal statement

Prof. Dr Chai Siang Piao is currently the Professor of Chemical Engineering, the Deputy Head of School (Research) for School of Engineering, and Head of Nano-Analytical Platform at Monash Malaysia. Prof. Chai’s research focuses on reaction engineering and advanced photocatalysis for environmental and sustainable energy applications. He has published more than 100 ISI-papers, accumulating a total citations over 6000 times. Throughout his research career, Prof. Chai has obtained 7 external research grants as a principal investigator with the total grant amount of more than RM1.5 mil. He is the co-investigator for more than 10 external grants funded by various funding agencies with the total funding amount of over RM10 mil. Prof. Chai has won numerous awards and recognition, such as Malaysia’s Research Star Award 2018, Top Research Scientist Malaysia 2018, National Outstanding Educator Award (Research) 2018, Malaysia’s Research Star Award 2017, etc. Prof. Chai is also an editorial board member for 5 international journals, grant assessor for national and international funding agencies as well as scientific reviewer for more than 60 ISI-journals.

Academic degrees

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 2008
  • Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) (Chemical Engineering), Universiti Sains Malaysia, 2004

Professional affiliations

Member of International Professional Bodies

  • Institute of Chemical Engineers (IChemE), Chartered Engineer

Research Interests

In recent decades, significant endeavours have been dedicated in resolving the escalating energy and environmental problems which have raised to an alarming rate. Photocatalysis, a process which drives chemical transformations by harvesting solar light in the presence of a catalyst, has emerged as a promising route to address these challenges. This technology appeals to be sustainable and less energy consuming due to its prominent feature of utilizing inexhaustible solar energy as the main driving force. Our research activities primarily focus on the rational design of novel, robust nanostructured materials for the applications in solar energy production and environmental remediation, which include pollutants degradation, hydrogen and oxygen evolution by water splitting as well as carbon dioxide photoreduction into hydrocarbon fuels such as methane and methanol. These projects are funded by Science Fund (MOSTI), NanoMITe -LRGS and FRGS (MOHE).

Research Projects

Title: Photocatalysis for Sustainable Energy Production and Environmental Remediation

Our research primarily focuses on rational design and fabrication of novel photocatalytic materials ingeniously arranged in nano-platform. The developments include a highly efficient Z-scheme system for overall pure water splitting to produce hydrogen and oxygen. We also construct low bandgap energy nanocomposites for carbon dioxide reduction into energy-rich hydrocarbon products, pollutants degradation, fine chemicals synthesis and disinfection.


Units taught

CHE3164 - Reaction Engineering

Local grants

  • Band Structure Engineering of Semiconductor Photocatalysts with Tunable Band-edge Potential for Efficient Carbon Dioxide Photoreduction and Photocatalytic Water Splitting, Chai Siang Piao, 4/2018 - 3/2020, MRSA-FRGS, RM300,000
  • Development of highly efficient Z-schematic photocatalysis system with enhanced electron transfer for overall water splitting under visible light irradiation, Chai Siang Piao, Aug 2016 - July 2019, FRGS, RM118,000
  • Chemical conversion of GHGs to value-added products over nanomaterials, Chai Siang Piao, 2015-2020, NanoMITe-LRGS, RM250,000

Current supervision

Kong Xin Ying

Development of Highly Efficient Bismuth-Based Nanomaterials for Photocatalytic CO2 Reduction into Energy-Rich Hydrocarbon Fuels

2015 - Present

Monash University Malaysia

Ng Boon Junn

Development of visible-light-active all-solid-state Z-scheme system for highly efficient overall water splitting

2015 - present

Monash University Malaysia

Chew Yi Hao

Development of highly efficient solar-driven photocatalyst for simultaneous photocatalytic H2 and O2 production via overall water splitting

2017 - present

Monash University Malaysia

Tang Jie Yinn

Development of visible-light-active graphitic carbon nitride-based nanomaterials for enhanced photocatalytic CO2 reduction into renewable energy-rich fuels

2017 - present

Monash University Malaysia

Teh Yee Wen

Surface defect engineering of nano-photocatalytic materials for highly efficient photocatalytic carbon dioxide reduction performance

2018 - present

Monash University Malaysia

Michell Chee Kim Ting

Solar-driven Water-Splitting via Z-Scheme photocatalyst

2018 - present

Monash University Malaysia

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Local Award/Recognition/Exhibition/Stewardship

  • Malaysia’s Research Star Award (MRSA) - Ministry of Education, 2018
  • Top Research Scientists Malaysia (TRSM) - Academy of Sciences Malaysia, 2018
  • National Outstanding Educator Award (Research category) - Educoop, 2018
  • Malaysia’s Research Star Award (MRSA) - Ministry of Higher Education, 2017
  • Pro-Vice Chancellor’s Award for Research Excellence - Monash University Malaysia, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
  • Gold Medal - Malaysia Technology Expo (MTE), 2012
  • Gold Medal - Expo, Science, Technology and Innovations, 2004

International Award/Recognition/Exhibition/Stewardship

  • Top Paper Award - Nano Research, 2016, 2018
  • Gold Medal - International Trade Fair–Ideas-Inventions-New Products–Nuremberg (iENA), 2009, 2014
  • Gold Medal - 33rd International Exhibition of Invention, New Techniques and Products of Geneva, 2005