Launch of DuPont Thermal Testing Unit in Singapore

SINGAPORE - A unit to test the effectiveness of flame-resistant materials, and to further their development, was launched Wednesday (May 18) at DuPont's facility in Tuas.

A feature of the launch, watched by 120 delegates, was a demonstration in which a mannequin, clad in DuPont's flame-resistant garment, Nomex, was exposed to an artificial flash fire of up to 1000 deg C.

A total of 122 heat sensors on the Thermo-Man Testing Manikin gauge the degree of burns and the percentage of survivability when different flame-resistant garments on it are exposed to flash fires.

The first in Asia Pacific, the testing unit is also one of five facilities worldwide, including those currently operating in the United States, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates and Brazil.

According to DuPont Corporate Counsel, John Gray, Nomex could possibly increase the chance of surviving a fire by 80 per cent.

The company's global business director, Dr Yi Zhang, invited samples and ideas from government agencies, corporates and non-governmental organisations to research and develop in the facility, saying "this advanced testing facility will help to save lives by simulating worst-case scenarios and advancing worker safety protection."

Members from the Singapore Police Force (SPF), Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) and the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) were present at the launch.

Ms Cindy Koh, Director, Energy & Chemicals, EDB, said that investments like DuPont's facility reinforced Singapore's value as a strategic base, saying "Companies can leverage Singapore's research ecosystem and geographical proximity to their customers to quickly develop solutions and tackle complex problems."

Correction note: This article has been updated to correct the spelling of the name of DuPont's global business director. We are sorry for the error.