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RDC invests more than $1.8 million in research

The Research & Development Corporation (RDC), the provincial Crown corporation for improving Newfoundland and Labrador’s research and development capacity (R&D), announced on Aug. 18 more than $1.8 million in funding for research projects at Memorial University.

The investment is being made through the Industrial Research and Innovation Fund (IRIF) in research areas relevant to Newfoundland and Labrador, including aquaculture, genetics, healthy aging, energy, earth sciences, and engineering.

The funding for 14 research and development projects is enabling researchers to leverage more than $2.3 million from other funding sources, including the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and industry players.

“This investment supports innovative, leading-edge R&D that is relevant to the province,” said Glenn Janes, chief executive officer of the RDC. “The Industrial Research and Innovation Fund develops, attracts and retains highly-qualified researchers and also encourages collaboration between academic researchers and industry.”

Dr. Ray Gosine, Memorial’s vice-president (research) pro tempore, said today’s investment is key in allowing researchers from the Faculties of Arts, Engineering and Applied Science, Medicine, Business Administration, and Science to further explore their research and areas of study.

“The Industrial Research and Innovation Fund is a significant source of funding for ongoing research and development at Memorial that aligns with the mandate of the RDC,” said Dr. Gosine. “Today’s announcement will allow our researchers to expand their research programs, collaborate with other researchers provincially, nationally and internationally, and to examine significant issues relevant to our province.”

One of the R&D projects being funded is a study examining the optimization of oil reservoir development. Dr. Ronald Haynes, associate professor from the Department of Mathematics and Statistics in the Faculty of Science at Memorial, is receiving $100,000 from IRIF for the project.

“The IRIF funding will be instrumental in securing the necessary computer hardware and expertise to develop mathematical algorithms capable of solving large scale optimization problems of interest to the local offshore oil industry,” explained Dr. Haynes. “Of particular interest is the oil well placement problem. Sophisticated computational techniques will allow virtual, relatively inexpensive, experimentation with problems like finding the best configuration of oil wells to maximize yield.”

A list of the 14 research projects can be viewed at http://today.mun.ca/news.php?news_id=5737.
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