Current Funded Research Projects and Collaboration

Nano Membrane Water and Energy Research

19.   Conversion of CO2 into CH4 Using HOT-DNA Membrane (2013)
Newly developed two-dimension (2D) HOT-DNA membranes brought in new properties such as flexibility, multifunctional
          while retaining its 1D properties such as not only UV but Vis light application. This proposal is to develop an integrated cost
 effective CH4 production from CO2. The focus of our proposal is to fabricate and assemble heterojunctioned HOT-DNA UF
          membranes and its modules for cost effective CH4 production from CO2 through the study of the flexibility mechanisms of
          heterojunctioned HOT-DNA membrane and the fundamental intersections of heterojunctioned HOT-DNA membrane and its
          biological, chemical, physical, atomic physical and quantum activities. Furthermore in a nano-solid state, the
          fundamentals of the interaction of HOT-DNA membranes and light will be studied in the context of cavity quantum effect
          diffusion.The objective of this project is to develop a HOT-DNA membrane reactor for converting CO
2 into CH4 under
          solar condition. 
18.   Multifuncational Nanostructured Membrane for Clean Water and Energy Production (2012)
The objective of this project is to develop a novel nanofibe/wire/tube membrane with multifuctional properties
        such as anti-fouling, concurrent water purification and energy production.
17.   SPICE --Singapore Process Integration Centre of Excellence--with demonstration in
        Singapore Refining Corporation Pte Ltd. (Jan 2012)

This project is to develop and demonstrate the local competence and technology in the field of
         industrial process integration for optimized solution for increased water, energy and production
         efficiency in refining and petrochemical process by setting up lasting competence centre to service
         the Singapore industry. This project is supported by national Research Foundation (NRF)/EWI.
16.   Derived Bunker Fuel from Waste Oil Sludge (Feb 2012)
This proposal focuses on the new development trend using the latest technology to convert the oil
        sludge regenerated from oil tank cleaning process into consumable bunker fuels. This project is
        supported by MPA.
15.   E4.3--Couple AdvancedOxidation Process (AOP): Sonophotocatalysis for Treatment of 
         Environmental Contaminants in RO Retenate Water, NSF, USA
        The proposed project is to develop a nano structured photocatalyst to remove the contaminants in 
        RO retenate water. The project is supported by NSF, USA and collaborating with Stanford University.
14.  Nano composite materials for spilled oil recovery (2011)
        The proposed project is to develop a nano composite materials with high adsorption capacity and
        easy for spilled oil recovery, dissolved oil and water separation and filtration.


13.  Feasibility Study of Integrating Flexible Dye Sensitized Solar Cells (DSSC) into Flexible
       Sheets for UAV applications (Nov 2009)

       This project is
to fabricate the flexible DSSC using nanostructured flexible TiO2 technology and to
       utilize the special characteristics of flexible DSSC to provide electrical power as a solar sheet module.
       This project is supported by TDSI.


12.  Assembling of Multifunctional TiO2 Nanofiber Membrane for Water Treatment (Dec 08)

      The cost for water reclamation is limited by a fouling problem which is caused by the deposition of the

      foulants on membrane surface such as nature organic matters (NOMs) and bacteria etc. This  project is

      to create a concurrent photocatalytic oxidation (PCO) and filtration membrane for large scale water

      treatment (self generation membrane). Due to the nanosized crystallite (QUANTUM efficiency) of

      TiO2 fiber, the PCO and filtration capability of nanofiber filter are being improved significantly. The

      membrane fouling problem will be minimized/disappear (possible). Thus the proposed project is to

      overcome the fouling problem of polymeric membrane and come up with robust and free standing TiO2

      nanfiber membrane for concurrent PCO and filtration. This project is supported by National Research

      Foundation (NRF)/EWI.


 11 Development of flexible DSSC for Commercial Application (Dec 08)

      Low cost fabrication and device stability are two main factors that hamper the commercialization of the 

      dye  sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). This project aims to solve these problems by fabricating flexible

      DSSCs. During the project, several new areas will be explored, which include the fabrication protocols

      for TiO2 fiber/tube/membrane, new concept of dye sensitizers, and new strategies for device

      fabrication. This project is supported by National Research Foundation (NRF)/Clean Energy Research

      Program (CERP).



10.    Concurrent Hydrogen Production and Water Purification Using TiO2 Nanofiber/Microsphere


9.    TiO2 Nanofiber Membrane for Removal of Marine Microorganisms (Dec 2008)  

        The robust and free-standing multifunctional ultrathin TiO2 nanofiber membrane acts as both filtration

        membrane and photocatalyst in water technologies. In the presence of ultraviolet light, the crystalline

        TiO2 nanofiber is known to produce strong oxidant and exhibit quantum size effects. These unique

        properties give rise to various applications particularly in (1) removing marine microorganisms from

        water, (2) producing cost effective commercial filtration membranes that could dramatically reduce

        the cost of water production and (3) treatment of Ballast water for safe discharge.  This project is        

       supported by Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore. 


8   TiO2 Nanofiber/tube/microsphere Membrane Solar Cell (Oct 2008)


         This project aims to fabricate dye  sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) for maritime and port application

         using TiO2 technology. This project is supported by Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore.


7.    Illustration Fouling Mechanism of Ultrafiltration Membrane in Water Treatment Systems

          NOM Fouling on UF Membrane       Clean UF Membrane Surface     

         NOM Fouling on UF Membrane             Clean UF Membrane                  Cross-flow Membrane Fouling Test  System


6.    Nanostructured, Nanofiber/tube, Hollow Mesoporous Microsphere & Its Membrane

        Collaborators:  Stanford University and PUB   


         Nano-structured TiO2 microsphere photocatalyst                  Nanostructured hollow TiO2 microsphere photocatalyst


        TiO2 nanofiber and TiO2 nanotube                                        Free-standing & flexible pure TiO2 nanofiber membrane


5.    Nano-structured Photocatalyst for Membrane Fouling Control

        Collaborators:  Stanford University and PUB

          TEC Award from Prime Minister's Office, Singapore

Click Here for News Release        

Nano MembraneFiltration MembraneNano TiO2

  TiO2 Nanostructured Photocatalytic Microsphere for Membrane Fouling Control (above)

  TiO2 Microsphere and Membrane Water Treatment System: A Pilot plant at CCK Waterworks Singapore (below)


4.    Filtration Membrane Fouling Mechanism and Control

         SEM Cross Section of Filtration MembraneConfocalMembrane Fouling


3.    Anammox Membrane Bioreactor and Membrane Biodigestor for Water Reclamation

Collaborators:  Stanford University and PUB

  MBR   MBR  

 Aerobic MBR has been used since 1999


This MBR system consists of 3 sections by baffles, the COD removal, the anoxic N removal and the membrane filtration


 Aerobic membrane biodigestor (MBD)

  Anammox membrane bioreactor  

2.     Nanofiltration Membrane for Water Reclamation

  NF Surface NF Smooth Surface       
   The manufacturing of semiconductor integrated circuit (IC) chips with indium phosphide (InP) produces

           toxic wastewater that requires proper treatment prior to safe discharge. In this work, a few nanofiltration   

           (NF) membranes were applied to the separation of both suspended InP particles and dissolved indium

           (In3+) from the wastewater. This study focused on (a) the performance of such a NF process under

           various operating conditions; (b) effects of electrochemical potential of indium, as a multivalent cation, on

           nanofiltration; (c) colloidal fouling of the membranes and the associated impacts on nanofiltration, and (d)

           modeling of nanofiltration processes.                                                                 

1.     MF/UF Membrane and RO Membrane for Water Reclamation




Click Here for More Membrane Water Research

Stabilization/Recrystallization for Waste Reutilization


1.    Pre-processing Marine Clay for Direct Land Reclamation (December 2011)
       This project is to use chemical additive to treat marine clay for direct land reclamation application. The objective is to

       improve the consideration performance of marine clay. This project is supported by MPA.


2.    Converting Dredged and Excavated Marine Clay into Hierarchically Structured Land Reclamation
aterial Using Re-stabilization Technology (April 2010).

This project is to (1) design the matrix use the “concept of waste to treat waste”; (2) to evaluate the physical
       and engineering properties of the land reclamation material; (3) design and evaluate the possibility of large
       scale commercial application.


3.    Converting Contaminated DredgedClay and Industrial Wastes Into Value-added Products

       Collaborators MPA, Subana and NES 

       TEC Award from Prime Minister's Office, Singapore

         Dredged Waste to Aggregate

The dredged materials with heavy metal content exceeding the levels set are mainly from rivers, shipyard and harbour basins, and cargo terminals and have to be disposed at current offshore dumping ground. Industrial wastes are generated by more than 2,000 companies in Singapore and required treatment to render them safe for ultimate disposal at dumping ground as well. The current dumping group will be filled by 2008. There is an urgent need to search a best alternative solution for not only reutilizing the dredged materials and the industrial wastes into value added products but also preventing heavy metal leaching problem. We had a joint project consisting MPA, Surbana, NE and NTU to look into the problems of contaminated dredged materials and industrial waste in Singapore at pilot scale. The joint project was supported by TEC to conduct a pilot test to (1) confirm the technology and process in a mass production level, (2) to test the products for applications such as land reclamation fill, road construction and building projects, and (3) to estimate the operational and costing parameters for setting up a full scale commercial plant.  The TEC project was implemented on the 15 July 2004 and completed on 30 December 2005.


3.    Converting Sludge from Waterworks into Value-added Products Using Frontier Recrystallization Technology

       Collaborators:  Stanford University and PUB

         Alum Sludge Aggregate

4.    Reutilization of Steel-making By-product into Asphalt Pavement Material

       Collaborator: NatSteel

         PavementWaste to Pavement Material