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Advancing research on vertical greening systems

27 October 2011

Prof Heng and Dr Tsujimura (centre) at the Memorandum of Understanding signing ceremony which was witnessed by SDE Department of Building Head Assoc Prof Tham Kwok Wai (far left) and Executive Vice President and Board Member of Suntory Midorie Ltd Mr Ryosuke Shiomi (far right)

Suntory and NUS representatives at the Hana no Kabe vertical green system

A collaboration between the NUS School of Design and Environment (SDE) and Suntory Holdings Limited paves the way for the research and development of vertical greening systems. SDE Dean Prof Heng Chye Kiang and Suntory's Managing Executive Officer Dr Hideo Tsujimura signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on 25 October 2011.

At the signing ceremony, Prof Heng said: "This collaborative effort between NUS and Suntory demonstrates our commitment to exploring innovative and viable solutions in the area of vertical greening systems." He added that through the collaboration, there will be exchange of scientific, academic and technical information as well as opportunities for the commercialisation of technologies.

On the collaboration, Dr Tsujimura noted: "We are very happy to sign this MOU with NUS to explore exciting opportunities in research and other areas, to further develop vertical greening systems, in turn creating a more sustainable environment for future generation."

Dr Tsujimura said Suntory hopes to make significant contributions towards Singapore's transformation from a "garden city to a city in a garden". Through Suntory Midorie Limited, Suntory has installed a two by three-metre green panel at SDE. The panel is equipped with Pafcal, a urethane-based spongy gardening material that serves as a soil substitute for growing plants.

Suntory has developed the novel "Midorie no Yane" or rooftop greenery system and "Hana no Kabe" or flower wall which brings greenery to wall surfaces without the need for soil. These revolutionary systems featuring Pafcal resolve the problems traditionally associated with creating roof gardens and green walls.

The green panel will add to the existing systems and equipment at SDE's Greenery Technology Laboratory which houses state-of-the-art technologies to introduce plants into buildings.

The NUS-Suntory MOU Signing Ceremony was followed by a seminar on creating comfortable green spaces in urban landscapes, and enhanced solutions to the heat island phenomenon. The seminar was conducted by Mr Katsuro Miyagawa, a specialist from Suntory's Institute for Plant Science.