June 29, 2010

Inauguration of Toray Singapore Water Research Center
- Toray's Water Treatment R&D Base in Singapore -

Toray Industries, Inc. (headquarters: Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan; President: Akihiro Nikkaku; hereinafter referred to as "Toray") today announced that it held the opening ceremony for Toray Singapore Water Research Center (TSWRC), its water treatment technology research and development base in Singapore, today at its booth at the Singapore International Water Week 2010 site.

The ceremony was graced with the presence of the Minister for Environment and Water Resources Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Chief Executive Khoo Teng Chye from the Public Utilities Board (PUB), Assistant Managing Director Yeoh Keat Chuan from the Economic Development Board (EDB) from the Singapore side, while former Prime Minister and Asia-Pacific Water Forum Chairman Yoshiro Mori, Vice Minister Taizo Mikazuki from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, and Ambassador Makoto Yamanaka from the Embassy of Japan in Singapore attended from the Japanese side. From Toray, Chairman & CEO Sadayuki Sakakibara, Senior Vice President Koichi Abe, who also serves as General Manager of Water Treatment & Environment Division, and Vice President and General Manager of Research & Development Division Yuukichi Deguchi among other officials attended the ceremony.

TSWRC was established in August 2009 at the Nanyang Environment & Water Research Institute (hereinafter referred to as "NEWRI") of Nanyang Technological University (hereinafter referred to as "NTU") with the aim of conducting research and development of water treatment technology based on Toray’s water treatment membranes. Prior to the establishment, Toray and NTU signed a memorandum of understanding in June 2009 and Toray has been carrying out research centered on membrane-based water treatment technology jointly with Prof. Ng Wun Jern, an international authority on wastewater treatment technology.
"NTU is pleased that the Nanyang Environment & Water Research Institute is the choice partner in Toray’s R&D efforts to develop cutting-edge water treatment technologies. The setting up of the Toray Singapore Water Research Centre at NTU is a testimony of NEWRI's strong links with global industry partners and NTU’s strength in water and environmental sustainability research. By leveraging on the expertise of both institutions, I am certain that we will see breakthroughs in water technologies that will benefit Singapore and beyond." said Prof Ng.

Furthermore, based on a memorandum of understanding signed in December 2007, Toray has been conducting pilot tests jointly with PUB on recycling of wastewater using polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) hollow fiber ultrafiltration (UF) membranes modules and 16-inch large-sized reverse osmosis (RO) membrane module.

At the TSWRC, Toray will further enhance the ongoing joint research test-bedding projects with PUB and plans to start a pilot test for recycling wastewater combining membrane bioreactors and RO membrane. Toray also plans to utilize NTU’s internship program to enhance its collaboration with the university. It plans to increase the number of the research staff at the center to about 50 people in 2015 and develop TSWRC into the core water treatment research and development base after the research centers in Japan and China.

Toray began research on RO membrane in 1968, and during the course of these 40 years it has been making continuous efforts to study and develop water treatment membranes. Toray has developed and currently offers all of the four types of water treatment membranes of RO, nanofiltration (NF), UF and microfiltration (MF) membranes. Toray is the world’s only membrane manufacturer that produces and supplies all the different types of membranes. Toray’s water treatment membranes, which are advanced materials developed using its comprehensive and unique technological capability based on synthetic organic chemistry, polymer chemistry, biotechnology and nanotechnology, has been internationally acclaimed. Toray’s proven track record in supplying high-performance membranes employing nanostructure control technology to major plants in Singapore include the high boron rejection RO membrane elements for the Tuas Seawater Desalination Plant with the capacity to produce 136,000 cubic meters of water per day and the low fouling RO membrane elements for the Changi NEWater plant with a capacity to produce 228,000 cubic meters of water per day.

Toray’s international R&D network spreads over Japan, South Korea, China, the U.S. and Singapore and it currently conducts water treatment technology-related research and development in Japan, China and Singapore. With TSWRC operations moving into full swing, Toray aims to step up global water treatment research and development efforts to further reinforce its presence in the water treatment business made possible by the world’s best water treatment membranes and application technologies.

【Profile of Toray Singapore Water Research Center】

Name Toray Singapore Water Research Center (Abbr.: TSWRC)
Representative Dr. Tadahiro Uemura, Director, Toray Industries, Inc.
Location Nanyang Environment & Water Research Institute (NEWRI),
Nanyang Technological University
Established  August 2009
Research themes Applied research and development of technology related to Toray’s water treatment membranes and associated technologies. Essentially the research will be carried out jointly with Prof. Ng, Executive Director of NEWRI, who is an international authority on sewage treatment technology.

Objective of TSWRC and expected outcome:

Aim Expected outcome
1 Develop innovative water treatment technologies and nurture human resources
  1. - Acquire advanced element technologies and latest information in joint research with NTU
  2. - Nurture global human resources by dispatching Toray engineers (joint researchers) to Singapore
  3. - Nurture human resources by enhancing technical capabilities of locally hired technicians
2 Improve efficiency in development and business promotion (taking advantage of human resources and accumulation of market information through overseas collaboration)
  1. - Improve the efficiency of Toray’s technological development by utilizing outstanding talents from partner universities
  2. - Develop effective technologies through acquisition of customers and grasping of market trends and information
  3. - Bolster Toray’s collaboration with TAS leveraging the presence of Toray technicians
3 Build relationship of trust with PUB, researchers and water treatment-related companies
  1. - Build favorable business relationships with influential and key figures in the industry
  2. - Carry out pilot tests to reinforce the track record of Toray’s water treatment technology
  3. - Enhance Toray’s presence through collaboration with PUB and researchers
  4. - Ensure appropriate and close communication through collaboration between Toray technicians and TAS and enhance the relationship of trust

【Toray Group’s water treatment research and development structure】