SIT Launches First-of-its-kind Centre for AI in Collaboration with NVIDIA

  • The SIT Centre for AI offers comprehensive end-to-end services with co-supervision by experts from both SIT and NVIDIA
  • It serves as a gateway for increased AI adoption across industries, better development of students’ competency in AI, and a boost in the AI talent pipeline
AI experts from SIT and NVIDIA

Applied research projects at the new SIT Centre for AI will be supervised by AI experts from both SIT and NVIDIA, including Dr Ng Aik Beng (second from left) and A/Prof Daniel Wang Zhengkui (second from right). (SIT Photo: Keng Photography)

The Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) today announced its new Centre for AI built in collaboration with NVIDIA. The Centre aims to bolster AI adoption across industries as well as develop an AI talent pipeline that will contribute to Singapore’s aim of tripling the number of AI practitioners within the next five years.

The SIT Centre for AI has commenced research & development (R&D) projects to accelerate industry and government adoption of AI. It offers comprehensive end-to-end technological support, innovative solutions, and co-supervision by SIT and NVIDIA experts to industry partners. It is dedicated to assisting the industry with the customisation and refinement of foundational and generative AI models, as well as fostering the development of cutting-edge AI applications tailored to meet specific needs.

SIT’s undergraduate and postgraduate students enrolled in Infocomm Technology (ICT) programmes and the Industrial Doctorate and Industrial Master (ID/IM) programmes have also begun to work on real-world projects powered by relevant NVIDIA AI technologies that will greatly upskill them.

Professor Susanna Leong, Vice President (Applied Research), SIT, said, “As AI continues unlocking new capabilities for industries across the world, we look forward to forging ahead in nurturing talent and building the competencies of the next generation for the thriving AI industry. The inauguration of this Centre, built in collaboration with NVIDIA, symbolises our dedication to fostering an AI ecosystem of creators and users for businesses and talents to thrive on the global platform to address the evolving landscape of generative AI.”

Dr Ng Aik Beng, Senior Regional Manager of the NVIDIA AI Technology Centre, said, “Generative AI is ushering in a new era of economic opportunity. Through our collaboration with SIT, NVIDIA aims to support research and development to help organisations accelerate AI adoption throughout the region.”

Centre for AI offers comprehensive end-to-end AI solutions

This centre, which SIT and NVIDIA are collaborating on, is the first of its nature and scale in the region. The Centre offers a comprehensive suite of AI solutions from inception to full-scale implementation. Both SIT and NVIDIA are co-supervising applied research projects to assist potential AI adopters in their transition, to prime them for the future AI economy. This will equip corporations, including SMEs, with the tools and support they need for successful AI integration.

With the Singapore government investing $1 billion into AI over the next five years[1], the potential of AI to help businesses stay competitive is clear, and the Centre aims to bridge the AI expertise gap between industries and their capabilities.

The Centre is aligned with the Singapore government’s efforts to accelerate AI adoption. “AI can be a force multiplier for the Singapore economy, and the government is working to accelerate AI adoption in sectors and companies that Singapore can be best in class,” said Mr Chan Ih Ming, Executive Vice President of the Singapore Economic Development Board. “By making it easier for businesses to become AI innovators, the SIT Centre for AI in collaboration with NVIDIA can bridge this gap and catalyse the industrialisation of AI in Singapore.”

The Centre also provides opportunities for SIT’s ID/IM postgraduate students to work on a stream of industry-level projects, with nine students already involved in AI projects leveraging the new Centre since the start of the year. Undergraduate students can also contribute to AI-related hands-on projects through their Integrated Work Study Programme (IWSP) and industry modules such as the Integrative Team Project (ITP).

More than 10 AI projects set in motion amid campus construction

Co-directed by AI experts from SIT, Associate Professor Daniel Wang Zhengkui, and NVIDIA, Dr Ng Aik Beng, the AI Centre has begun interim operations in SIT@NYP Building while its permanent space in SIT Punggol Campus is being constructed. The Centre at SIT’s upcoming Punggol Campus, which is situated in the Punggol Digital District, will feature two main spaces – a demo area and a seating area for 50 research engineers and students – within a space of 244 square metres.

Powered by NVIDIA accelerated computing, the Centre will present opportunities for industry partners to testbed AI products. It will further support project collaboration on NVIDIA AI software solutions and access to expert advice from NVIDIA. This includes NVIDIA AI Enterprise software such as NVIDIA NeMo, an end-to-end platform for developing custom generative AI models from anywhere. NeMo includes tools for training, retrieval-augmented generation, guardrailing and toolkits, data curation tools, and pretrained models, offering enterprises an easy, cost-effective, and fast way to adopt generative AI.

SIT has embarked on more than 10 industry projects leveraging AI in collaboration with NVIDIA. These range from protein discovery, social science, computer vision, large language models, digital twins and industrial metaverse, and more. These industry partners include:

  • SMRT Corporation and SIT are co-developing a generative AI (GenAI) system aimed at enhancing safety investigations and reporting. By leveraging GenAI, incident reporting process can be automated, expediting the documentation process. This cutting-edge technology also acts as an additional layer of check that enhances the completeness and accuracy of incident reports. It directly benefits ground staff who are involved in incident reporting and investigation, boosting their productivity and operational efficiency. Powered by GenAI, this system will also facilitate in analysing the incidents, raising warnings, and extracting actionable intelligence. This is in support of SMRT’s ongoing commitment to prioritise and elevate safety standards for their workforce and for the millions of commuters they serve daily.
  • CTMetrix is collaborating with SIT to develop generative AI solutions for creating training data for multi-view X-ray scans of faulty electronic PCBs. This data trains an image inspection AI to accurately detect defects in soldered connections, overcoming challenges like out-of-focus alignment. Additionally, it facilitates swift adaptation to new PCB designs without requiring full model retraining.

Inaugural SIT Industry Day welcomed AI enthusiasts from industry
Along with industry partners including SMRT Corporation, P&G and CTMetrix, SIT hosted a panel discussion at its Industry Day, themed ‘Translation of AI Technology into Industry Applications’, which unpacked the adoption of AI and the future of the technology in various industries. The session, attended by more than 150 attendees from the industry, was followed by demonstrations of AI developed by the Centre’s research projects for real-world problems.

Reps from SIT and NVIDIA at Industry Day Apr 2024

Representatives from SIT and NVIDIA at Industry Day, 2 April 2024 (from left): Dr Pius Parakattil, Senior Director, Beauty, Procter & Gamble, Singapore Innovation Centre; A/Prof Indriyati Atmosukarto, Deputy Cluster Director, Infocomm Technology cluster, SIT; Prof Chua Kee Chaing, President, SIT; Prof Susanna Leong, Vice President (Applied Research), SIT; Dr Simon See, Global Head and Chief Solution Architect, NVIDIA AI Technology Center; Mr Eugene Teh, Deputy Group Chief Data Officer, SMRT Corporation Ltd; Mr Bill Chang, Chairman, SIT's Board of Trustees; Dr Ng Aik Beng, Senior Regional Manager, NVIDIA AI Technology Center; Dr Edward Morton, Chief Technology Officer, CTMetrix; Prof Ian McLoughlin, Cluster Director, Infocomm Technology, SIT; A/Prof Daniel Wang Zhengkui, Co-Director, SIT Centre for AI. (SIT Photo: Keng Photography)

One of the demonstrations was conducted by SMRT to showcase how they gain deeper insights into commuter sentiments, preferences, and areas of concern by harnessing advanced sentiment analysis algorithms. The near real-time sentiment analysis can help SMRT identify and prioritise areas of improvement based on commuter feedback. It will also support them with proactive issue resolution and further augment the public transport operator’s responsiveness to meet the evolving needs of commuters.

Mr Eugene Teh, Deputy Group Chief Data Officer, SMRT Corporation, said, “SMRT is pleased to collaborate with Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) and NVIDIA on AI and data-driven initiatives to enhance our operational efficiency and service standards. This milestone is an expansion of our successful collaboration with SIT since our MOU signing in Nov 2022, which has seen the completion of several key projects under the SMRT-SIT Transport Living Lab. We look forward to jointly exploring more innovative solutions that will support SMRT’s efforts to ‘Do Right, Do Good and Do Well’ as a steward of the public transport network.”As part of the collaboration, SIT and NVIDIA will look to co-host more webinars and conferences to enhance the awareness of AI amongst students, industry and community.

About Singapore Institute of Technology

The Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) is Singapore’s first University of Applied Learning, offering industry-relevant degree programmes that prepare its graduates to be work- and future-ready professionals. Its mission is to maximise the potential of its learners and to innovate with industry, through an integrated applied learning and research approach, so as to contribute to the economy and society.

The University’s unique pedagogy integrates work and study, embracing authentic learning in a real-world environment through collaborations with key strategic partners. Its focus on applied research with business impact is aimed at helping industry innovate and grow. Ready in 2024, SIT’s centralised campus within the larger Punggol Digital District will feature a vibrant learning environment where academia and industry will be tightly integrated with the community.

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