Temasek Poly to work with SMEs to turn ideas into products in a 'biofactory'

SINGAPORE - Imagine a "biofactory" where firms bring in raw products like ideas and get them made into quality products.

This is what is on offer at Temasek Polytechnic's School of Applied Science, which announced on Wednesday that it will partner local enterprises to become a one-stop applied science project incubator. Here, staff and students will work with industry partners to turn ideas into commercial products and services.

The new biofactory concept is focused on three areas - agri-food technology, medical technology and renewable resources technology, and will build on the school's existing work with the industry.

"In the last five years, we have been helping the SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) extensively," said Dr Ong Seng Poon, the school's deputy director for capability development, in a speech at the school's Applied Science Show on Wednesday.

The showcase of more than 40 research projects on topics from ornamental fish farming to food testing was attended by nearly 300 industry partners at the polytechnic's campus.

"We have conducted more than 6o analytical science-related projects with more than 50 SMEs in Singapore. We help them innovate to move up the value chain," said Dr Ong.

The school also helps resource-constrained SMEs defray costs by tapping into available government funding. In the last two years alone, the school has secured more than $2 million in research grants.

Also in the works is a new Veterinary and Aquaculture Centre, and a seven-storey East Wing building that will be ready next year. The East Wing will house two floors of research facilities, including a nanotechnology, a biotecnology, and a molecular diagnostics laboratory.