(Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario) – Canada’s colleges play an important role in research and innovation across the country. That’s why we’re funding partnerships between colleges and companies to help provide local students with training opportunities and jobs, while growing local and regional economies.
Today, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport, announced investments to support 94 forward-thinking partnerships to address challenges that affect all Canadians, locally and nationally. These projects will receive over $45 million through the College and Community Innovation (CCI) Program and the College and Community Social Innovation Fund (CCSIF).
Across Canada, this investment will advance research and innovation for years to come and delivers on the Government of Canada’s historic commitment to science. Budget 2018 included $140 million in additional funding for the CCI program over five years and $30 million a year ongoing after that. That means that the CCI program will be funding more lab equipment, more research partnerships with businesses and entrepreneurs, and more learning and training opportunities for students.
The funds will be used to equip the College’s 3D Innovation Lab with a 3D metal printer and a composite materials (carbon fiber, fiberglass, and kevlar) 3D printer, and a 7-axis robotic arm with an integrated 3D scanner.
This equipment will provide local businesses with the opportunity to take part in applied research projects with low risk capital investment, to help test and justify further 3D printing and 3D scanning technologies adoption, discover technology return on investments, and identify unique customer value and competitive advantages. St. Clair College's applied research and educational programs are catalysts to industry innovation and commercialization, and the proposed equipment will be essential to regional, and thus national, success in advanced manufacturing innovation.
The St. Clair College applied research program is strongly aligned with the manufacturing industry needs in Windsor-Essex - the largest sector in Windsor-Essex and Canada's most manufacturing intense region. With the growth rate of advanced manufacturing rapidly increasing, it is essential that St. Clair College support local businesses with regards to innovation and global competitiveness through applied research and student training. As we develop a 3D Innovation Lab for Advanced Manufacturing, housed in the Ford Center for Excellence in Manufacturing at St. Clair College, that will include 3D printing and 3D scanning capabilities. 3D printing will provide new applied research project capabilities in advanced manufacturing product and process design through rapid prototyping, direct digital manufacturing of end use parts, rapid tooling, and tool, die, and mold design and manufacturing. 3D scanning is a complementary technology to 3D printing that will provide new applied research project opportunities in advanced metrology to test the advantages gained by 3D printing applications. 3D scanning also has inherent advantages in regards to part inspection, reverse engineering, and laser alignments that are highly accurate, efficient, reliable and digitally integrated, supporting current industry needs of automation, preventative maintenance, and real-time self-evaluation of individual processing components.
“On campuses across the country, colleges are pursuing exciting research opportunities and at the same time helping companies enhance their products and processes, bringing promising ideas to the marketplace. With research areas ranging from advanced manufacturing to artificial intelligence, the projects being funded today will have real-life benefits for all Canadians.”
– The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport
“NSERC is proud of its role as a convenor and enabler of innovation-driven activities that help businesses compete and thrive through interactions with colleges and polytechnics. Today’s recipients also exemplify how researchers are effective at closely aligning their activities with regional needs to strengthen their communities.”
– Dr. Marc Fortin, Vice-President, Research Partnerships, NSERC
“Partnerships between business and industry and colleges and polytechnics play an essential role in enabling Canada to compete successfully in the global economy. The Canada Foundation for Innovation is proud to support these excellent initiatives through the College-Industry Innovation Fund.”
- Dr. Roseann O’Reilly Runte, President and CEO, Canada Foundation for Innovation
“Manufacturing industries throughout this region will benefit immensely from the new research and testing capabilities made possible by the federal funding of this new equipment at the college,” said St. Clair President Patti France. “Additionally, the opportunity for our students to be involved with this hands-on research will provide them with cutting-edge abilities which they will carry with them into the employment marketplace.”
Office of the Minister of Science