Membrane Technology (SMTC)

The domain of membrane technology (SMTC) established in January 2008 to do fundamental and applied research in membrane technology. In particular, it has a mission to be a world-class research unit in membranes for the environment, water, energy and cleaner production. This is achieved through combining multidisciplinary talents at NTU as well as working closely with government institutions, other universities and industry partners to bring the outcomes of the research activities to larger scale through collaborative projects.

From fouling in the reverse osmosis process to ultra-thin hollow fiber and seawater desalination, membrane technology has a profound impact in the circular water economy. In support of the sustainability journey towards lowered energy consumption drives us towards better membrane technology development through areas such as systems design. Our applied research in Membrane technology is on its mission to be world-class cleaner environment, water, energy and production, combined with multidisciplinary talents at NTU, government institutions, other universities and industry partners through collaborative projects. 

Areas of research

SMTC research into membrane technologies targets solutions for water, environment, energy and cleaner production: ​

Novel membranes

  • FO/PRO 
  • Low pressure NF 
  • Membrane distillation
  • Biomimetic​

Enhanced module & system design

  • Multi-stage approach
  • 3D printed spacer & module

Fouling controls and sensors 

  • Preventing membrane damage
  • Optimizing performance

Novel Membrane Bioreactors (MBRs)

  • AnMBR
  • Extractive MBR
  • Fluidized bed MBR

Development of High‐Performance Membranes for the Recovery of Methane from Anaerobic Digestion Processes

1.SMTCposter_High‐Performance membranes for methane recovery

Scale up of Aquaporin based biomimetic hollow fiber membranes for water reuse and desalination


High Recovery Seawater Desalination by Energy‐Efficient Reverse Osmosis (EERO) Processes

3.SMTCposter_High Recovery Seawater Desalination by EERO

Electrical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) for Fouling Detection in Reverse Osmosis (RO) Process

4.SMTCposter_EIS for fouling in RO process

Characterizing the pore‐size distribution of membranes via evapoporometry (EP)

5.SMTCposter_Characterizing the Pore‐Size Distribution of membranes via EP

Gravity-Driven Membrane (GDM) Filtration for Seawater Pretreatment

6.SMTCposter_Gravity-Driven Membrane (GDM) filtration

Low-pressure hollow fiber nanofiltration (NF) membranes for softening of high salt concentration water

7.SMTCposter_Low-Pressure Hollow Fiber NF membrane for high salt concentration water softening

Towards high recovery in water reclamation processes: high performance NF-MBR+RO system

8.SMTCposter - high Performance NF-MBR+RO

Online monitoring of transparent exopolymer particles by a novel membrane-based spectrophotometric method

9.SMTCposter_monitoring TEP

Development and application of high‐performance air separation membranes for oxygen‐enhanced waste‐to‐energy incineration 

10.SMTCposter_high performance air separation membrane

Pilot‐scale study of pressure‐retarded osmosis for osmotic power harvesting using real wastewater brine

11.SMTCposter_pilot study of pressure retarded osmosis for harvesting using brine

Supporting module design, fabrication and operation to harness the benefits of HAOPs (heated aluminum oxide particles) for fouling control as a novel pretreatment in practical membrane-based water processes

12.SMTCposter_module deisgn and fab of HAOPs


SMTC has a dedicated laboratory of 1000 m2, equipped with state-of-the-art research facilities and supported by advanced analytical instruments to enable high quality membrane research, including: field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), fourier transform infrared (FTIR) microscopy, suface potential analyzer, porometer, liquid chromatography-organic cabron detector (LC-OCD), electrical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), ultrasonic time-domain reflectometry (UTDR), optical coherence tomography (OCT), etc.

For a list of publications from SMTC, please click here

Please click for SMTC's brochure: 

SMTC brochure

SMTC research enquiries: Associate Professor Chong Tzyy Haur (Deputy Director, Technology Leader) [email protected]  / (65) 6593 8126

SMTC lab safety enquires: Mr Joseph Kwan (Lab Manager) [email protected] / (65) 6513 2393