Applied Research Capacity Gets a Boost from NSERC Grants!

Chris Gillis, manager, Applied Research Business Development

It has been a productive building year for Applied Research at Durham College! In the winter we received notification that our Natural Sciences and Engineering Council of Canada (NSERC) Applied Research Tools and Instruments (ARTI) grant applications for not one, but all three grant applications, were successful. Durham College is now the proud recipient of funding for a new rapid prototyper, two growth chambers and a brew line with related lab equipment. 

To date we have installed and commissioned a new Stratasys Fortus 360 rapid prototyper, purchased from local company Cimetrix Solutions Inc. and have one externally funded project starting in January 2015 that will make use of the rapid prototyper, with several more projects in development. The rapid prototyper will support multiple industries that require the ability to develop and refine prototypes made of production-grade thermoplastics.

The second grant was for two growth chambers (a walk-in and a reach-in) to support agricultural research, and these units have now been ordered. A head house extension has been built onto our new greenhouse located near the Centre For Food on the Whitby Campus to accommodate the growth chambers. Several applied research projects are in development along with a five-year grant application submission for an Industrial Research Chair to carry out research in the area of pest management for local crops.

Our third successful grant was for the installation of a small pilot brewing line and associated microbiological lab equipment to support the growing craft beer industry. A variety of applied research projects are anticipated with local craft brewers from the development of new recipes to work on quality control and testing as well as R&D on equipment and control systems.

2015 is shaping up to be a very good year for applied research at Durham College as this new capacity comes on line!