A 'living lab' as test bed for water and green technologies

Sembcorp Industries' facilities here will be Singapore's first industrial "living laboratory" for test-bedding water and environmental technologies.

The company has entered into a partnership with the Economic Development Board (EDB) to grant firms providing these technologies access to its proprietary wastewater treatment and waste-to-energy facilities on Jurong Island.

Companies will be able to use the facilities to conduct research and development in areas such as smart water systems.

Sembcorp and EDB will also jointly invest up to a total of $8 million to support the commercialisation of research and development projects in the water and environmental fields.

Proposals from companies which provide these technologies will be jointly evaluated by Sembcorp and EDB for their scalability, technological merits and economic impact.

Sembcorp's researchers and engineers will then work with successful applicants to test-bed their new technologies in actual industrial settings.

'GLOBAL HYDROHUB' BOOST

It is also aligned with Singapore's aspiration to be a living lab where companies can develop, test and commercialise urban solutions in a real-life setting before scaling up for the region and beyond.''

EDB ASSISTANT MANAGING DIRECTOR LIM KOK KIANG, on the initiative by Sembcorp Industries

If the technologies are successful, they could be deployed in Sembcorp's global operations.

This will give smaller players which do not own any infrastructure the chance to scale up their technologies and develop a track record, Sembcorp said yesterday.

"As a global water and energy company with a rich history of being technology- and innovation- driven, we hope that we will be able to contribute towards raising the profile of Singapore as a hub for applied R&D, and at the same time, support the long-term growth of the water and energy sectors," said Sembcorp group president and chief executive Tang Kin Fei.

EDB assistant managing director Lim Kok Kiang said the initiative will strengthen Singapore's position as a "global hydrohub" and provide another pathway to commercialise water research investments.

"It is also aligned with Singapore's aspiration to be a living lab where companies can develop, test and commercialise urban solutions in a real-life setting before scaling up for the region and beyond," he added.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 19, 2015, with the headline 'A 'living lab' as test bed for water and green technologies'. Print Edition | Subscribe