Dutch Technology Foundation, Hyflux to jointly fund, execute membrane research program

June 23, 2009
SINGAPORE, June 23, 2009 -- Dutch Technology Foundation and Hyflux Limited have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to jointly fund and execute an STW Research Partnership Program on advanced membrane separation technologies...

SINGAPORE, June 23, 2009 -- Dutch Technology Foundation (STW) and Hyflux Limited (Hyflux), one of the world's leading providers of integrated environmental solutions, today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly fund and execute an STW Research Partnership Program on advanced membrane separation technologies.

The MOU was signed by Hyflux Group Deputy CEO & CFO Mr Sam Ong and the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA) Area Director Ms Linnie MacKenzie on behalf of STW. The MOU was signed during a media event held along side Singapore International Water Week 2009, and witnessed by Hyflux's Group CEO Ms Olivia Lum and PUB Singapore Chief Executive Mr Khoo Teng Chye.

A new initiative mooted by the STW, the Program aims to stimulate more effective cooperation between academia and industry to create technological breakthroughs in inorganic membrane separation technologies that can accommodate applications with extreme temperatures, pressures and pH values. The Program's broad direction will be set with industry input, and universities will be invited to submit PhD and post-doctorate proposals in an open tender. These proposals will be jointly evaluated by qualified representatives of STW and Hyflux. Work will be carried out on selected proposals in both university and industrial laboratories in a practical environment under the guidance of university professors and industry staff. The first collaboration of its kind for Hyflux, the Program is expected to draw the best academic researchers in the Netherlands.

Administered by a team made up of representatives from a cluster of Dutch universities, Hyflux's inorganic membrane R&D and technology commercialization teams, the Program is expected to last between two to four years. The budget of EUR 3 million will be co-funded equally by STW and Hyflux.

"There is an immediate need and huge market potential for membrane separation technologies in replacing costly and high energy-consuming distillation processes in petrochemical industries. In this respect, Hyflux is a natural fit as our partner as its proprietary inorganic hollow fiber membrane concept is based on delivering cost-effectiveness while maintaining the typical compactness of polymeric hollow fiber membranes," said Dr Eppo Bruins, Director of STW. "This first partnership with leading water company Hyflux will further reinforce the reputation of The Netherlands as a research hub with high quality researchers well known for their expertise in ceramic and hybrid membranes. We are therefore very excited in enabling the close collaboration between Hyflux and leading Dutch universities."

Commenting on the partnership, Ms Lum said, "Hyflux has always been a technology-driven company. We are excited at the opportunity to enhance our knowledge base by tapping into ongoing membrane developments through linkages and collaborations with internationally recognized research experts, reputable universities and renowned research institutions worldwide."

STW is the Dutch Technology Foundation. Its aim is to realize knowledge transfer between academic research and users in general and industry in particular.

Hyflux is one of the world's leading technology-driven environmental companies, with operations and projects in Southeast Asia, China, India, the Middle East and North Africa.

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