Researchers receive $8.5 million from AIF
By Deborah Inkpen
Memorial researchers were successful in receiving support from the Atlantic Opportunities Agency (ACOA) under its Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF).
Peter MacKay, minister of Foreign Affairs and minister of ACOA, announced March 31 that five research and development projects in Newfoundland and Labrador will receive up to $13.1 million.
Loyola Hearn, minister of Fisheries and Oceans, released details of the projects in St. John’s on behalf of Minister MacKay. The selected projects will be led by private and not-for-profit sectors and academia, along with a number of other partners, and have a total value of $25.6 million.
Dr. Vlastimil Masek, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, received $2.5 million, Dr. Phillip Bording, jointly appointed to the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science and the Department of Earth Sciences, received $3 million and C-CORE, a separately incorporated entity of Memorial, received $3 million, collectively bringing Memorial a total of $8.5 million in funding from AIF.
Dr. Bording leads an international team of experts in the seismic and computer industries as well as academia, to build world class technology for imaging the Earth’s interior. The project will benefit the oil and gas industry through the development of three-dimensional, full-wave equation modelling and inversion software, as well as purpose-built wave equation computer hardware. This will mean better delineation of existing reservoirs and targeted drilling for new reserves. With total costs of more than $6 million, the project will receive up to $3 million from the Atlantic Innovation Fund over a four year period.
Dr. Masek is the principal investigator on a five-year Ocean Network Seafloor Instrumentation project. The initiative will offer long-term, wide-area monitoring of seabed processes, such as geological imaging for offshore oil and gas exploration and reservoir management, as well as earthquake and tsunami detection. With a total cost of more than $4 million, the project will receive up to $2.5 million from the Atlantic Innovation Fund over a five-year period.
C-CORE received up to $3 million from the Atlantic Innovation Fund over three years for Risk Mitigation Strategies for Subsea Infrastructure the project was led by was led by Dr. Shawn Kenny who is a cross-appointment to the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science at Memorial. For this project, C-CORE will work in partnership with
Atlantic-based academic and government researchers, as well as engineering, procurement and construction companies, to build on the region’s existing expertise in ice hazards management. The project will develop world-class capability for commercial engineering services and design recommendations used to manage protection and risk strategies for subsea infrastructure in ice environments.
“ACOA is making key investments in research and development investments that support the economic future and competitiveness of Atlantic Canada,” said Minister MacKay. “It’s about finding new ways of doing things, creating new approaches, new products and services and bringing them to markets around the world. The Government of Canada is committed to supporting these kinds of projects that bring new knowledge, new jobs and new business opportunities to the Atlantic region.”
The announcement comes as part of a series of announcements to release details on the 29 highly innovative research and development projects throughout Atlantic Canada receiving funding from the AIF.
Other AIF projects announced in Newfoundland and Labrador include:
Consilient, headed up by Memorial alum Trevor Adey, received up to $3 million from the Atlantic Innovation Fund over a three year period for the development of advanced wireless middleware for future mobile computing, which includes $150,000 in direct graduate student support for collaborative research activities with the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science in the area of computer engineering;
Terra Nova Marine Company Limited will get up to $1.6 million for a yacht management system.
For full details on the projects, see www.acoa.ca/e/media/press/press.shtml?3512.
Earlier in the day, Minister MacKay also announced the process for accepting proposals for the next round of projects to be funded under the Atlantic Innovation Fund.
Mandatory letters of intent must be submitted to ACOA by May 10, 2006, and complete project proposals must be submitted by June 28, 2006. Detailed information is available at www.acoa-apeca.gc.ca.