The consortium of Tuas Power and ST Engineering, along with PUB, Singapore’s National Water
Agency, have officially opened Singapore’s fifth desalination plant. Located on Jurong Island, the Jurong Island Desalination Plant (JIDP) has a daily capacity of up to 137,000 cubic metres (about 30 million gallons) – the equivalent of 55 Olympic-sized swimming pools of water.
Constructed under the Design, Build, Own and Operate (DBOO) model, JIDP will be operated by TPSTM Water Resources Pte Ltd – the Joint Venture company formed by the Tuas Power-ST Engineering consortium – for a 25-year period.
Spanning over 3.7 hectares, which is about the size of five football fields, JIDP receives seawater
from Tuas Power’s Tembusu Multi Utilities Complex (TMUC) for processing into potable water.
JIDP’s co-location with TMUC allows it to derive synergies in resources such as sharing of seawater
intake and outfall structures, as well as energy from in-plant generation facilities. Due to the colocation, the plant is about 5% more energy efficient compared to conventional desalination plants,
which translates to annual energy savings sufficient to power nearly 1,000 HDB households.
Building a full-fledged desalination plant on existing infrastructure called for innovative engineering
solutions, from creating modular systems in different areas of the desalination process to the prefabrication of equipment such as the reverse osmosis units.
The plant is also highly automated – a three-man team can run the entire plant’s operations from its
control room. In addition, JIDP incorporates the latest proven water treatment equipment and
membrane technologies such as dissolved air flotation, ultra-filtration, and reverse osmosis.
The design and construction of the JIDP has provided ST Engineering the opportunity to leverage
their expertise in large scale engineering projects in the marine sector to deliver complex
environmental engineering solutions. The result is an energy efficient, technologically advanced, less
labour intensive and weather-resilient water source that meets Singapore’s water needs.
Leveraging on TMUC’s existing infrastructure for seawater intake, the synergies between JIDP and
TMUC have enabled operations to save approximately 5,000 Megawatt hours per year. That is
almost 1,000 HDB households’ energy consumption annually, making JIDP one of the more energy
efficient desalination plants in Singapore.
9 Desalinated water is one of Singapore’s Four National Taps, and a weather-resilient source that
contributes to the nation’s long-term water supply sustainability. The other four desalination plants in Singapore are the Singspring (2005), Tuas South (2013), Tuas (2018) and Marina East (2020) plants.