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REF NO.: 226

SUBJECT: Memorial University receives $322,296 in CFI funding to support two new researchers
DATE: April 26, 2004

Dr. Christopher Loomis, vice-president (research) of Memorial University, welcomed the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s (CFI) total investment of $322,296 supporting the research of Drs. Kristin Poduska, in Memorial University’s Department of Physics and Physical Oceanography, and Erika Merschrod, Department of Chemistry.

“These awards represent a strategic boost to the research capabilities of these universities,” said Carmen Charette, interim president and CEO of the CFI. “These projects were selected following a thorough assessment process and will help ensure that researchers and graduate students at Memorial have access to a world-class facility and training environment.”

Drs. Poduska and Merschrod were awarded the funds for a specialized facility for in-fluid preparation and characterization of inorganic and biological materials. This unique facility will provide equipment that is essential to two emerging research programs, one developing hierarchically-structured bio-inorganic materials (based in the Department of Chemistry), and the other creating novel electro-deposited materials (based in the Department of Physics and Physical Oceanography). The infrastructure encompasses a powerful suite of instruments for the preparation and study of biological and inorganic materials in aqueous environments. The new materials developed through this research will find use in a number of technological applications, from electronic circuit miniaturization to biomedical implants.

A national announcement earlier today of $29.9 million in funding to 33 universities across the country was made by Ms. Charette and Andy Scott, minister of state (infrastructure), in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

These investments, approved by the CFI board of directors on March 2, 2004, were made under the New Opportunities Fund, providing $23 million for infrastructure support to newly recruited academic staff, and the Infrastructure Operating Fund providing $6.9 million to help with operating and maintenance costs associated with new infrastructure projects.

A complete list of New Opportunities Fund projects, by university, can be found at www.innovation.ca.

The CFI’s New Opportunities Fund enables eligible universities to provide research infrastructure for newly-recruited faculty members, in their first full-time academic appointment in Canadian degree-granting institutions, so that these researchers can undertake leading-edge research. The fund also enables institutions to recruit new faculty members in the areas of research identified as priorities in their strategic research plans.

The Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) is an independent corporation created in 1997 by the Government of Canada to fund research infrastructure. The CFI’s mandate is to strengthen the ability of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and other non-profit institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development that will benefit Canadians.

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