School of Physics - Universiti Sains Malaysia

Lim Koon Ong

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   Medical Biophysics, Bioenergy



Emeritus Prof Dr Lim Koon Ong was born in Malacca on January 1st, 1946. He received his primary school education at the Tranquerah English School and his secondary school education at the Gajah Berang Secondary English School as well as the Malacca High School, where he obtained his Higher School Certificate in 1966. With his excellent results, Prof Lim proceeded to Canada for his higher education under a Colombo Plan Scholarship.

He graduated with a BSc (First Class Honours) in Physics from Queen’s University, Canada in 1971 and a Bachelor of Education in 1972. In 1973 he proceeded to read for a doctorate degree in Biophysics at the University of Western Ontario, Canada where he successfully obtained his PhD in 1976.

Prof Lim began his academic career when he was appointed as a lecturer in the School of Physics, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) in December 1976. While in the School of Physics, he successfully introduced three new programmes of study i.e. the Applied Physics Programme, the Diploma in Laboratory Programme and the Engineering Physics Programme.

Prof Lim had also served as Deputy Dean, Acting Dean, Chairman of the Engineering Physics Programme, Chairman of the Matriculation Programme (Physics), as well as Coordinator of the Diploma in Laboratory Technology Programme which was jointly offered by the Pure Science Schools, and the School of Mathematical Sciences. Due to his academic achievements, he was appointed as an Associate Professor in October 1984 and a Professor in August 1994.



Besides his teaching and administrative duties, Prof Lim was also active in research. His research interests were in Biophysics and Bioenergy (biomass). To date he had published more than 120 articles as well as 4 books in the Malay Language. In the field of Biophysics, he was one of the world’s first to study the mechanical properties of human heart valves. He also published papers on blood flow as well as heart sounds. In the area of Bioenergy, he was one of the first in the country to investigate the use of biomass as a renewable source of energy. Due to his research efforts and other academic contributions, Prof Lim was elected as Fellow of the Academy of Sciences, Malaysia and Fellow of the Institute of Physics, Malaysia.



Besides his academic and administrative duties, Prof Lim was also active in numerous committees and organizations outside the University. For example in April 2010 he was appointed as the First Head of the Science and Mathematics Cluster, the National Council of Professors by the Prime Minister of Malaysia. He was once invited by the Nobel Committee, The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences to suggest candidates for the Nobel Prize in Physics.

From 2011 to 2013 Prof Lim was the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic Affairs and Research) of UCSI University. In his 2 years at UCSI, he successfully revamped the university’s academic and faculty structure as well as refining and putting in place academic procedures for a smoother running of the university. He was also instrumental in setting the direction of UCSI University and formulating its strategic plan.

Besides the Colombo Plan Scholarship, Prof Lim also won various other fellowships such as the Nellie Farthing Memoral Fellowship, the Canadian Heart Foundation Fellowship, the Ontario Heart Foundation Fellowship and the ASAIHL Fellowship. He was also awarded the Pingat Jasa Kebaktian (1994) and the Bintang Cemerlang Negeri (2009) by His Excellency the Governor of Penang and the Darjah Seri Sirajuddin Perlis (2010) by His Royal Highness, the Raja of Perlis. In March 2011 Universiti Sains Malaysia conferred upon him the title of Emeritus Professor, the first staff in the School of Physics to be conferred the title.

In addition to his duties as an Emeritus Professor at USM and since 2014, Prof Lim is also a Visiting Professor at Toyohashi University of Technolgy, Japan. In February 2016 he was appointed as a member of the Board of Governors of UCSI College. The College is located in Kuala Lumpur. In that same year he was also appointed by the State Government to sit on the Selection Committee of the Penang Future Foundation.

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The Dean, School of Physics,
Universiti Sains Malaysia,
11800 USM,
Penang, Malaysia

Tel : 604 653 3200  |  Fax: 604 657 9150  |   Email :  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. |