16th – 19th November 2020, Virtual Osaka, Japan

Written by: Mohammad Faizal Ahmad Fauzi, Chair for the R10 Newsletter Committee

With the theme Advancing Technologies for Sustainable Development Goals to Transform Our World, the 2020 IEEE Region 10 Conference (TENCON2020) were successfully held from 16th to 19th November 2020 by the IEEE Japan Council. The 35th edition of TENCON was initially planned as physical event to held in Osaka, Japan, but due to the COVID19 pandemic, it was changed to a fully virtual event instead using the Zoom platform.  The conference consists of keynote speeches, special sessions, invited sessions, as well as the regular parallel sessions. 257 papers were presented throughout 3 days, divided into 46 tracks which covers various electrical and electronic engineering disciplines.

The conference started from Tuesday 17th November 2020. TENCON2020 General Chair, Takao Onoye and Honorary Chair, Isao Shirakawa welcomed all participants to the conference. The Technical Program Chair, Minoru Okada then presented the technical report, where he informed that the conference received 426 papers submission from 22 countries. After careful review, 289 papers were accepted for presentation (67% acceptance rate) at the conference, in which 257 papers were eventually presented. The highest number of submission comes from India which made up 31.3% of the total submission, followed by the Philippines (23.3%) and Japan (12.9%).

The opening ceremony was proceeded with the address by IEEE Region 10 Director, Akinori Nishihara, and IEEE President, Toshio Fukuda. In the afternoon session, Md. Altaf-Ul-Amin from Nara Institute of Science and Technology delivered the first plenary talk on Applications of KNApSAcK Database and DPClus Algorithm: Plants to Metabolites to Target Proteins in the Context of Jamu Medicines and IBD Gene Prediction. The first day also saw 16 regular sessions as well as 2 special sessions (Recent Advances on Autonomous Mobile Robots) conducted in 6 parallel tracks. All presentations were pre-recorded with the presenter taking up the questions live following their played-back presentation.

The second day saw another keynote speech delivered by Keisuke Fujii from Osaka University, where he discussed the topic on Quantum Computing: State of the Art and Prospects. Besides, it also features the first invited session on IEEE Region 10 Special Industry Track. Welcomed by the Industry Relations Chair, Chris Lee and chaired by Sugie Toshihiko, the session lined up 4 prominent speakers namely Kazuo Yano, Kazuko Ishikawa, Stefan Winkler and Davis Chen. The second day also saw a session specially conducted for the winners of the 2020 IEEE R10 Postgraduate Research Paper Contest to share their excellent research work. Another 16 regular sessions as well as a special session on New Trends of Biometrics rounded up the second day of the conference.

The third and final day of the conference saw another 2 invited sessions on R10 YPC-PAC Workshop: How to Plan and Manage Online Contest, organized with the support of the R10 Young Professionals Committee (YPC), and Engaging More Women in Technical Activities: Following SPS and PES Models, with the support of the R10 WIE Committee. The YPC-PAC workshop, chaired by R10 YPC Chair, Takuo Suzuki, featured 3 excellent young speakers, namely Takashi Yoshida, Shravan Kumar Kalyankar and Navaneethakrishnan Ramanathan, sharing their experiences in managing online contests and discussing the establishment of a fair and adequate judging committee.

The WIE track, co-chaired by R10 WIEC Chair, Emi Yano and IEEE SPS WISP & 2017-20 IEEE PES WIP R10 Representative, Celia Shahnaz, lined up 6 prominent women speakers including the 2021 IEEE WIE Chair, Jenifer Castillo; 2021 IEEE Signal Processing Society President, Athina Petropulu; and 2021 IEEE Power and Energy Society President, Jessica Bian. Celia Shahnaz, Ruomei Li and G. Bhuvaneswari completes the list of excellent speakers for the session. In this special WIE track, participants found motivation and realized the value of WIE utilizing the advantage of virtual mode while learning the opportunities to engage in different technical societies, such as SPS and PES. Another 14 regular sessions were carried out before the closing ceremony brought the 35th edition of TENCON to an end.

Four papers were selected for TENCON2020 Student Paper Awards; 2 from special sessions, and another 2 from the regular sessions. The four papers are:

Special Session:

  1. Improved Double-Tree RRT* Algorithm for Efficient Path Planning of Mobile Robots, Liquan  Jiang, Shuting Wang, Jie Meng, Xiaolong Zhang, Yuanlong Xie
  2. An Efficient and Robust Approach to Solve the Kidnapped Robot Problem Considering Time Variation, Jie Meng, Shuting Wang, Gen Li, Liquan Jiang, Yuanlong Xie, Haodong Sun, Chao Liu

Regular Session:

  1. Individual Learning Effectiveness Based on Cognitive Taxonomies and Constructive Alignment, Phat Huu Nguyen, Preecha Tangworakitthaworn, Lester Gilbert
  2. A Concentric Double-Ring Resonator Based Plasmonic Refractive Index Sensor with Glucose Sensing Capability, Md. Farhad Hassan, Infiter Tathfif, Mohammed Radoan, Rakibul Hasan Sagor

Overall the 2020 edition of TENCON, the flagship conference of IEEE Region 10, was very successful despite the virtual mode, with 534 total number of participants (i.e. Zoom unique sessions). Well done to the organizing team from the Japan Council, led by Prof. Takao Onoye. See you in Auckland, New Zealand in December 2021 for the 36th TENCON!