Photo of Yunji Chen

Computer & electronics hardware

Yunji Chen

Accelerate the era of intelligence

Year Honored


"Cambrian" is the name of the geological era that experienced an explosive emergence of life on Earth 600 million years ago. But today it has a new meaning. It represents the new heights, new speeds, and new dimensions of Chinese AI processor development. Now, on the eve of the artificial intelligence explosion, it is Cambrian’s AI processor research team led by Yunji Chen that has picked up the mission of leading human society from the information era to the intelligent era. The Cambrian team was born out of the Institute of Computing Technology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. They are pioneers in the global artificial intelligence field and is committed to building core processor chips for all types of intelligent cloud servers, intelligent terminals, and intelligent robots.

As for Yunji, he was a child prodigy starting school at age 5, entering middle school at age 9, being accepted into the University of Science and Technology of China School for the Gifted Young at age 14, and earning his Ph.D. from the Chinese Academy of Sciences Institute of Computing at age 24. Being a young scientist, his academic career is equally impressive, being promoted to researcher at age 29 and being awarded the China Youth Science and Technology Award and Young Scientist Award of Chinese Academy of Sciences at age 33.

But contrary to what people may think, Yunji doesn’t think he’s good at studying. He admitted that during his 19 years as a student, not only was he rarely in 1st place, he also frequently placed at the bottom of his class. However, he has the advantage of being able to stay very calm and becoming even calmer in the face of major events. So, for key examinations that would affect the direction of his life (such as the college entrance examination and the graduate studies entrance examination), he never made mistakes.

Reflecting on his childhood, one thing worth mentioning is his family environment. Growing up, his parents placed great importance on developing his ability to acquire knowledge, and not just instilling specific knowledge. Thanks to his parents, Yunji always believed he would eventually go on the path of academic research. After entering the University of Science and Technology of China, his graduate supervisor, Prof. Weiwu Hu, greatly influenced him as well, eventually leading him to a career of processor research, as they are both devoted to developing processors that can meet the needs of the intelligence era.