NANJING, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- Qian Qihu, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAE) who won the country's top science award this month, has decided to donate all his prize money to help poor children receive an education.
Qian, 82, together with another academician Liu Yongtan, was awarded 8 million yuan (1.18 million U.S. dollars) each for outstanding contributions to scientific and technological innovation in early January.
He set up the theoretical system for China's modern defense engineering and contributed to creating a below-ground defense infrastructure.
Qian said on Tuesday he has decided to use the money to set up a student aid fund in his hometown, the city of Kunshan, eastern China's Jiangsu Province, to help more poor children gain access to school.
Since 2006, Qian has personally assisted 17 poor students in Kunshan with funding of more than 200,000 yuan, said the local authority.
"To serve the country and the society is the duty of a soldier. Receiving the award is definitely an honor, but it also means more responsibilities," said Qian, a professor with the Army Engineering University.
Qian's charitable behavior has been praised by numerous Chinese netizens. Many people paid tribute to him and said they were deeply touched.