Innovation call launched by NEA and SPRING Singapore for cleaning and waste management industry

The National Environment Agency (NEA) and SPRING Singapore have jointly launched an innovation call to encourage greater use of technology and automation to increase the overall productivity in the cleaning and waste management industry.  This call is based on the Environmental Services Industry Transformation Map (ES ITM) launched in December 2017,

The objective is to evaluate and test-bed suitable technologies that can improve the efficiency of both NEA and industry operations related to cleaning and waste management, and support local Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)/start-ups in developing competitive technologies for application in the Environmental Services sector.

NEA and SPRING are inviting interested qualifying parties to submit proposals that can address the four problem statements, two of which are from the cleaning industry and two from the waste management industry. The call closes on March 31, 2018.

Cleaning Industry

A safe, efficient and cost-effective kitchen exhaust duct (KED) cleaning solution

KEDs have to be cleaned regularly to prevent grease accumulation inside the ducts which poses potential fire hazards. Currently, KED are degreased manually by cleaners which is time-consuming and labour-intensive. Cleaners are equipped only with spray bottles of degreasing agent and, scrappers and cloths to scrape and wipe off the grease. They have to crawl through the ducts and work within confined spaces. They are also unable to clean hard to reach areas, especially long vertical ducts.

The proposed solution should be able to clean all parts of KED. In addition, the proposed solution should be less labour-intensive and time-consuming, less intrusive (i.e. does not require cutting of access panels) and provide higher cleaning standard. The equipment should be remotely operable and it should be able to take photos or videos or both of the conditions of the duct and also the cleaning process.  The total power consumption of equipment(s) used should not exceed power supply allowable in the premise.

The working prototype should be ready for evaluation 6 months after the start of project, and the fully functional end-product must be deployable for a pilot after 10 months.

A self-cleaning toilet to enhance productivity of cleaners and improve toilet cleanliness for users

A solution is required to facilitate a self-toilet cleaning system that can be activated upon reaching a number of uses and/ or scheduled basis. The automated self-cleaning equipment used must be able to operate in wet environment and should not intrude on the privacy of toiler users.

The system should be able to collate data on toilet usage and breakdown etc., analyse and translate such data into reports and findings. It should provide this data on web-based dashboard to allow users to access remotely on smartphone, iPad and PC etc.

The proposed solution should allow integration with other systems when required and upgrades to the latest operating system. There should be adequate protection from cyberattacks, unauthorised access etc.

The working prototype should be ready for evaluation 6 months after the start of project, and the fully functional end-product must be deployable for a pilot after 10 months. 

Waste Management Industry

Reducing the physical strain of the work crew in waste collection operation

Each public waste collection team requires 2 crew members to perform collection from a mix of bin types on different road conditions. The collection process may require the crew to push and pull the bins against uneven terrains, up/down slopes, against drains, gutters and kerbs. Certain routes require waste collection crew to collect from trade premises with 660L bins which may weigh as heavy as 300-400kg.

The proposed solution should be an assistive technology to aid in the waste collection crew’s daily operation to collect heavy bins from a variety of road conditions. Improving productivity and safety, along with portability and cost-effectiveness of the device are important criteria.

Developing a cost-effective and efficient on-site non-domestic mixed waste treatment system

NEA is seeking an on-site waste treatment system within existing premises’ waste management facility to effectively treat their own general wastes.

Currently, the only type of waste treatment installed at facility level is on-site food waste treatment machines. General waste is collected by licensed general waste collectors (GWCs) for incineration.

The challenge is to look for a versatile system to effectively and efficiently treat the general waste to higher value by-product such as electricity, hot water, etc. Another key challenge is to propose a system which can function within the waste management facility in existing premises, such as bin centres.

Featured image: ProjectManhattan/ CC BY-SA 3.0 

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