Blue Gold

1 Jul 2012                       

TechXchange in session

The world is getting more crowded and cities are growing more rapidly than ever. With such unprecedented expansion, the demands placed on a city’s water infrastructure may be pushed to its limits.

The TechXchange Workshop held at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre aimed to provide innovative solutions to these pressing issues. The workshop attendees consisted mainly of venture capitalists, investors and 21 local and international start-ups, all aiming to bring new, high-tech water solutions to the world.

From the start of the workshop, it was clear that while all the solutions presented would be environmentally-friendly, business was the name of the game at the end of the day. The entrepreneurs not only had to provide game-changing and exciting new ideas, but also financially viable solutions.

One such company was Hydrovolts, a manufacturer of new in-stream hydrokinetics water turbines. Not only does their product bring something new to the table – the company has created a new, more efficient turbine – it can also be “dropped-in” anywhere without the need for any dams or construction. This dream combination of innovation and commerciability was what the investors and capitalists were looking for.
Local start-ups were also in the spotlight. Tan Cher Seng, Managing Director of Natflow, was present to explain how their innovation allows buildings and factories to recycle the structure’s waste energy from air-conditioning for heating and desalination. The result is an almost zero-energy solution for desalination.

Before attending this workshop, I always had this notion that sustainable water solutions were a very “soft” subject. Little did I know so many brilliant minds and so much funding are invested into the growth of physical infrastructure and technology involving such a basic necessity – water.

By Dillion Tan


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