News Details | 15-Oct-2010

NTU and TUM jointly set up new research centre

The new TUM-CREATE Centre for Electromobility signs MOUs with eight leading industry partners at its opening and plans to launch its first prototype by 2013

A new research centre was opened at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) today that will conduct research in electromobility and put Singapore on the world map for sustainable transportation solutions. A prototype of an electric car is targeted to be completed by 2013.

The TUM-CREATE Centre for Electromobility is jointly sponsored by the Technical University of Munich (TUM), NTU, and the National Research Foundation’s Campus for Research Excellence & Technological Enterprise (CREATE) programme, an initiative that attracts elite international research universities to set up research centres here in collaboration with Singapore-based institutions.

TUM-CREATE today signed Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) with eight leading industry partners at the official opening of its Centre for Electromobility.

Working with the eight partners – EADS Singapore, Gemalto, IBM Singapore, Infineon Technologies Asia Pacific, Robert Bosch (South East Asia), Siemens Aktiengesellschaft, Singapore Technologies (ST) Kinetics, Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS) - TUM-CREATE hopes to attract more research groups and experts for the development of a prototype electric car.

Besides industry collaborations, TUM-CREATE has also partnered NTU to conduct research on electric car and battery technologies, energy storage as well as the related technology and infrastructure to support these areas.    

Dr Tony Tan, Chairman of the National Research Foundation and the Guest-of-Honour at the opening event, witnessed the signing of the agreements together with TUM President, Professor Wolfgang A. Herrmann and NTU President, Dr Su Guaning. 

Representing TUM-CREATE were its Corporate Director, Dr Markus Wächter and Co- Scientific Director, Professor Lam Khin Yong who is also NTU’s Associate Provost for Graduate Education & Special Projects.  They signed the MOUs with Mr Gan Yeow Beng, Vice-President & Head of EADS Innovation Works Singapore, Mr Foong Sew Bun, Chief Technology Officer, IBM Singapore, Mr Emmanuel Brouillet, Germalto Director, Mr Andrew Chong, Regional President and Managing Director, Infineon Technologies Asia Pacific, Dr Oliver Wolst, Senior Manager (Research and Technology Center Asia Pacific), Bosch, Dr Gernot Spiegelberg, Vice President Group Strategy, Siemens, Dr Richard Kwok, Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Officer, ST Kinetics, and Prof Joachim Luther, SERIS Chief Executive Officer.

The TUM-CREATE Centre for Electromobility will capitalise on TUM and NTU’s complementary strengths in research and development as well as their long- standing strong academic collaborations to meet the demand for a new paradigm in urban e-mobility fusing safety and energy efficiency.
“The TUM-CREATE Centre for Electromobility is well-poised to tap on the vast German engineering experiences, in partnership with our local universities and Singapore-based industry to create innovative solutions, to address the individual and public transport needs, which would allow Singapore to take a significant step towards the realization of electric-mobility,” said Dr Tan.

Under the TUM-CREATE initiative, 40 faculty members from TUM and NTU will work in Singapore supported by 100 researchers, including PhD and Masters students from both countries.

The project team hopes to complete a prototype of an electric car, in a year’s time. Named MUTE, which is inspired by how quiet this vehicle is when it travels, the electric car will make its first public demonstration at the Frankfurt Autoshow in September 2011. This will be followed by fleet tests in Singapore in 2011 and 2012. The Programme aims to demonstrate by the year 2013 how electromobility solutions can be ideally suited for tropical megacities, such as Singapore.

"We need to be present in the Asian metropolitan centres where technological progress is unhindered and unobstructed," said Professor Wolfgang Herrmann. “I see this cooperation as a model for the internationalisation of German research universities, as a strong presence in other countries could enhance their performance and impact at home. Each of our countries has a highly skilled, educated workforce and a desire to pioneer clean technologies that will seed new industries," added Prof Herrmann, who began building the university's presence in Singapore through TUM Asia, a decade ago.

Commenting on NTU’s involvement in TUM-CREATE, Dr Su Guaning said: “Sustainability and energy research are key thrusts for NTU. The university, through the Energy Research Institute @ NTU (ERI@N), aims to advance research that improves efficiency of the current energy systems while maximising synergistic effects of alternative energy sources. We see our collaboration with TUM-CREATE as a partnership of research excellence and value creation. With our excellent track record in engineering research and our thriving research environment, NTU hopes to share our expertise in energy research and contribute significantly to the creation of a new paradigm of electric vehicles.”

Added NTU’s Provost, Professor Bertil Andersson, who was instrumental in sealing NTU’s collaboration with TUM: “Although the Singapore auto market is relatively small, electric vehicles will be the next revolution in transportation. Singapore is well-placed to be the test bed for technologies and infrastructures supporting such vehicles and this can then be exported to other countries in Asia.  Research in these areas will help to create a new high-technology electronic vehicle industry in Singapore, which will benefit the economy in the near future and align with NTU’s profile and leading position in the world in sustainability research.”

Said Corporate Director of TUM-CREATE, Dr Markus Wächter: “TUM-CREATE, set up in collaboration with NTU will be a model for a unique partnership between the world’s two leading universities in German and Singapore. We look forward to having our PhD students on board for our joint PhD programme with NTU in electromobility and to kick start the research in electromobility solutions in the coming months. With our combined strengths, I believe that we will be grooming the future talents and leaders in E-Mobility.”

Professor Markus Lienkamp, Scientific Director of TUM-CREATE further added that, “The complex yet compact urban structure of Singapore is ideally suited to develop and test a comprehensive electric mobility system for a megacity.”

Media contacts:

Nanyang Technological University

Esther Ang
Manager, Corporate Communications Office
Tel: +65 6790 6804; Mobile: +65 9113 9654; Email:

German Institute of Science and Technology –TUM Asia
Natalie Toh
Manager, Communications
Tel: (+65) 6 777-7407; Fax: (+65) 6 777-7236; Email:

About Nanyang Technological University 

About Technische Universität München (Technical University of Munich)
For more than 140 years, the Technische Universität München has been combining scientific expertise with an entrepreneurial mindset. In our capacity as one of Europe’s leading research universities, we pin our hopes on the vast range of human skills, identifying and sponsoring talent. We create teams by pooling new strengths. This leads to top performance and supports Corporate Identity.

Today, our graduates are active throughout the globe; our professors are at home on an international platform. Our success is based on numerous components: competence in one's field of special interest; co-operations between associate departments; cross-curricular, transdisciplinary team spirit, alliances with professional practice. Unafraid of taking risks, we are breaking new scientific ground. Ingenuity and normality, ivory tower and workbench, lecture room and laboratory, traditional beer brewing and 'virtual reality' – the Technische Universität München nurtures all these features under its collective roof.

Ever since the TUM was founded as a 'polytechnic school' in 1868, we have been playing an active role in transforming Bavaria from an agricultural state to a high-tech location. Rooted in this tradition we created a powerful international network. We are now an international university. With roughly 400 professors and 7,000 additional staff, we offer academic and research opportunities to nearly 23,500 students. More than 15 per cent of its staff and nearly 20 per cent of its students come from abroad, creating a university culture which is cosmopolitan and hospitable. In Europe and worldwide, TUM maintains nearly 400 university partnerships, and collaborates with many international research institutions.

TUM is currently one of the prestigious institutions selected for an award of excellence as part of the “Excellence Initiative” launched Germany in 2006.  It achieved top results in all its core fields of education and research: engineering and economics, natural and life sciences, medicine and sports. In addition interdisciplinary programs offer many opportunities to carry out innovative projects. In its entire academic and research fields, TUM is dedicated to insuring that new knowledge and products will move towards to improve the quality of human life and protect the environment.

Technische Universität München (TUM) is one of the most innovative institutions of higher education in Germany and is dedicated to generating and communicating highly specialised research and to providing excellent academic education.

TUM has a subsidiary in Singapore, the German Institute for Science and Technology –TUM Asia (“TUM Asia”). Through GIST-TUM Asia, TUM is currently offering five MSc programmes and one BSc programmes in Singapore, three of these are offered jointly with NTU, the remaining two MSc programmes are jointly offered with NUS, and one MSc programme is a pure TUM degree.

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About German Institute of Science and Technology - TUM Asia
The German Institute of Science and Technology – TUM Asia (“TUM Asia”) commenced operations in Singapore in 2002 as a subsidiary of Technische Universität München (TUM). German Institute of Science and Technology – TUM Asia  (GIST – TUM Asia) is a 100% subsidiary of Technische Universität München (TUM) in Singapore and the result of the first ever German-Asian university partnership. Through joint Master programmes with Singapore’s world renowned universities, National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU), GIST-TUM Asia aims to bridge academic education, industry knowledge and research to qualify young professionals for technology oriented leadership roles in a competitive global economy. The latest addition to our courses is a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Information Technology. GIST-TUM Asia is supported by the Singapore Government through the Economic Development Board (EDB), and by the German Government through the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). Technische Universität München (TUM) is one of the most innovative institutions of higher education in Germany and is dedicated to generating and communicating highly specialised research and to providing excellent academic education.

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