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Lim Seh Chun

Advisor, Special Projects, Office of Provost

Telephone: +65 6499 4567
Research Areas:
Material Science

Pillar / Cluster: Engineering Product Development


Seh Chun began his role at SUTD in May 2014. Prior to joining SUTD, he was the Deputy Dean of Engineering at the National University of Singapore (NUS). He also oversaw the Design-Centric Programme in the NUS Engineering Faculty. During that period, he chaired the NUS Institutional Laboratory Safety Committee, and was a member of the NUS Nominating Committee for Honorary Degrees and Emeritus Professorships. He was also the former Head of the NUS Department of Mechanical Engineering, Chief of Staff at the NUS President’s Office/Vice-Chancellor’s Office, Acting Director of Institutional Resources, and an Associate President. He was appointed the first Chairman of the NUS University Promotion & Tenure Committee, and served as Chairman of two NUS business entities: Singapore University Press and WizLearn Pte Ltd.

Seh Chun is well known internationally for his work with Prof Mike Ashby of Cambridge University in the development and construction of wear-mechanism maps. He has made invited presentations at prestigious international conferences, including the Gordon Research Conference in Tribology and the World Tribology Congress. He has been involved in organising international conferences in areas such as Engineering Materials and Tribology, including chairing the first International Conference on Advanced Tribology, Singapore; and co-chairing the series of International Conferences on Materials for Advanced Technology ICMAT2003 to ICMAT2009, Singapore. He has also served as member of Scientific or Advisory Committee of a number of international conferences in Tribology and Materials Education. He co-organised with Prof Mike Ashby the first, second and third Asian Symposium on Materials Education held in Singapore in December 2014, 2016 and 2018 respectively. A fourth symposium is being planned.

Seh Chun served as a member of the review panel for the A*STAR Joint Council Office (JCO) project grants from 2012 to 2016 and is currently a member of the A*STAR SERC Audit Committee. He also sits on the Board of SBS Transit Ltd and was on the Board of the Singapore Symphony Orchestra until 2017. He is presently Chairman, Singapore School of Science and Technology Board of Directors.


  • 1977 BA (Hons) Engineering Science, Oxford University
  • 1983 MA, Oxford University
  • 1983 MEng National University of Singapore
  • 1986 PhD Cambridge University

Research Interests

  • Tribology of engineering materials

Awards and Achievements

  • 1973 Physics Prize, National Junior College, Singapore
  • 1974 Overseas Merit Scholarship, Singapore Public Service Commission (PSC)
  • 1975 Senior Merchant Taylors Scholarship, St John’s College, Oxford
  • 1975 Book prize, St John’s College, Oxford
  • 1982 Overseas Graduate Scholarship, National University of Singapore (NUS)
  • 1991 Fellow, The Institution of Mechanical Engineers, UK
  • 1991 Chartered Engineer (CEng), UK
  • 1993 Fellow, The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, UK
  • 1994 Professional Engineer (PEng), Singapore
  • 1996 Good Service Medal (Singapore Armed Forces)
  • 2003 National Service Medal (Singapore Armed Forces)
  • 2005 Public Administration Medal (Silver)
  • 2006 Long Service Medal
  • 2012 Fellow, The Institution of Engineers, Singapore

Selected Publications

  • Lim SC and Brunton JH, “A dynamic wear rig for the scanning electron microscope”, Wear, Vol.101, 1985, pp. 81-91.
  • Lim SC and Ashby MF, “Wear-mechanism maps”, Acta Metallurgica, 35, 1987, pp. 1-24.
  • Lim SC, Ashby MF and Brunton JH, “Wear-rate transitions and their relationship to wear mechanisms”, Acta Metallurgica, 35, 1987, pp. 1343-1348.
  • Lim SC, Ashby MF and Brunton JH, “The effects of sliding conditions on the dry friction of metals”,Acta Metallurgica,  37, 1989, pp. 767-772.
  • Lim SC, Liu YB, Lee SH and Seah KHW, “Mapping the wear of some cutting-tool materials”,Wear, Vol. 162-164, 1993,  971-974.
  • Lim SC, Lim CYH and Lee KS, “The effects of machining conditions on the flank wear of TiN-coatedhigh speed steel tool inserts”, Wear, Vol. 181-183, 1995,  901-912.
  • Lim SC, “Recent developments in wear-mechanism maps”, Tribology International, 31, 1998, pp. 87-97.
  • Lim SC and Lim CYH, “Effective use of coated tools – the wear-map approach”, Surface &Coatings Technology,  139, 2001, pp. 127-134.
  • Lim SC, “The relevance of wear-mechanism maps to mild-oxidational wear”, Tribology International, Vol. 35, 2002, pp.717-723.
  • Lim CYH, Lim SC and Gupta M, “Wear behaviour of SiCp reinforced magnesium matrix composite”,Wear, Vol. 255, 2003, 629-637.
  • Lim SC, “Wear maps”, in Encyclopedia of Tribology, Q. Jane Wang and Yip-Wah Chung (ed), Springer-Verlag, 2013, pp 4007-4012.
  • Sinha SK, Satyanarayana N and Lim SC (ed), “Nano-tribology and Materials in MEMS”, Springer-Verlag, 2013, ISBN 978-3-642-36935-3.
  • Lim SC, Batchelor, AW and Lim CYH (eds. for Wear Division), “ASM Handbook Volume 18: Friction, Lubrication and Wear Technology”, ASM International, 2017, 1108 pp.