Professor Yee-Kwong Leong
BAppSci Sci.U.Malaysia, PhD Melb., FIEAust., Sr MAIChE, MAusIMM, Professor
Yee-Kwong Leong is a professor of chemical engineering at the University of Western Australia.
He is ranked as a top 2% world scientist by the Stanford University in 2019 and 2021. He has over 150 journal and more than 60 refereed conference publications. He has worked on suspension processing research particularly in the area of surface chemistry and rheology, for over 30 years.
Some of his research results and data on colloidal forces and rheology were reproduced in Chemical Engineering Textbooks; Rheology and Structure of Complex Fluids (1999) and Colloidal Suspension Rheology (2012). He has a mathematical model named after him for describing the ageing behaviour of thixotropic clay gels. More recently he discovered the true mechanisms of time dependent behaviour of clay gels.
He found that electrostatic double layer (EDL) repulsive force governs the development of the gel network structure and is responsible for the time-dependent behaviour. He also discovered that the microstructure of monodisperse nanodisotic Laponite gel was formed from sheets instead of disks contradicting the widely accepted model.
Recently he made a number of commercially useful discoveries – i) a new method for safe storage of tailings in the dam by using a UWA patented composite phosphate-based additives to reduce the concentrated tailings viscosity so it can be pumped easily to the dam and then used a calcium-based neutralising additive to turn liquid tailings into a paste again for storage and ii) a range of cost effective UWA patented composite additives for mining mine iron ore achieving 54 to 60% Fe content from tailings with 44-55% Fe.