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New 3D-printed industry technology tested at Curtin Malaysia’s pilot plant

Media release

New 3D-printed structured packing technology that offers cleaner and more efficient gas separation and chemical processing across various industries will be tested at Curtin Malaysia’s pilot plant.

The collaboration, made possible by the support of the Federal Government’s Accelerating Commercialisation program, will ensure the SpiroPak project can be tested at operational scale at the Sarawak Biovalley Pilot Plant, a purpose-built research and development facility at Curtin Malaysia.

The new technology, developed by a team of Curtin researchers, enables greater efficiencies in the material separation of large-scale chemical processing industries such as chemicals manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, LNG and food. Using 3D-printed technology, the SpiroPak’s unique helicoidal flow path sets it apart from other structured packing, enabling a smoother flow and more efficient separation of many different gases and liquids.

Curtin University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research Professor Chris Moran said the Accelerating Commercialisation program offered researchers, entrepreneurs, small and medium businesses access to expert advice and funding to help get a new product, process or service to market.

“This Curtin technology has the potential to save chemical manufacturing and processing industries million of dollars each year by offering a more effective and energy-efficient separation process,” Professor Moran said.

“Receiving this support from the Federal Government’s Accelerating Commercialisation program will help take SpiroPak’s innovative technology a step closer to being used widely across a range of industries, turning leading research into real-world solutions.”

Curtin University Commercialisation Director Mr Rohan McDougall said the team behind SpiroPak was named the overall winner at the 2019 Curtinnovation Awards, which will be held again in September.

“Curtin is committed to fostering a culture of innovation and helping researchers who develop novel concepts or inventions to assess the commercial viability of their products or services and the best method of bringing it to market,” Mr McDougall said.

“With this support from the Federal Government, the SpiroPak team will be able to demonstrate the technology’s use in various industries, including through a full-scale trial at Curtin Malaysia’s Sarawak Biovalley Pilot Plant.”

Curtin Malaysia was Curtin University’s first international campus when it opened in 1999. Located in Miri, Curtin Malaysia offers a unique cross-cultural learning experience with students from more than 50 different countries and teaching staff from more than 15 countries.

The Accelerating Commercialisation program is part of the Entrepreneurs’ Program run by the Federal Government.

For more information about the program, visit here.