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REF NO.: 23

SUBJECT: Memorial University officially opens Inco Innovation Centre
DATE: Sept. 20, 2005

Today representatives of Memorial University, the provincial and federal governments and Inco Ltd. officially opened the Inco Innovation Centre, a new $17.3 million research and innovation facility located on the university’s St. John’s campus. The impressive-looking glass and steel edifice, built over the structure of a defunct student centre, represents the university’s vigorous commitment to innovation in research and teaching; the new facility will also enhance Memorial’s community-oriented focus.

Inco Ltd. committed $13 million towards the capital cost of the facility and $1 million annually for seven years for operations and maintenance. The federal government — through $13.1 million announced in 2003 under the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) and an additional $10 million announced today under the agency's Business Development Program -- has invested over $23.1 million in support of ongoing research and development in the centre.

Containing some 9,000 square metres, the Inco Innovation Centre houses a wide range of research, business support and educational facilities on three floors. Research related to geosciences, hydrometallurgy and the Voisey’s Bay mineral deposit will be concentrated on the first floor of the building. The first floor contains labs for health, safety and risk engineering, and process engineering and corrosion reduction. The centre was also designed to house a small scale model of a hydrometallurgical plant.

Memorial’s president, Dr. Axel Meisen, stressed the significance of the bright new structure at the centre of the campus. “The Inco Innovation Centre is a beautiful new facility, but the true value of the new building will come from the innovations that the centre will foster at Memorial,” he said. “Thanks to the generosity and vision of Inco and the government of Canada, the Voisey’s Bay deposit will not only provide the jobs and economic growth one would typically expect, but will also pay other critically important dividends for the people of Newfoundland and Labrador by making Memorial University a stronger, more research intensive and innovative institution.”

“Inco is extremely proud to be associated with Memorial," said Scott Hand, chairman and CEO of Inco Ltd. "Our Voisey's Bay project has demanded some of the most innovative partnerships this country has ever seen among private industry, government, aboriginal peoples and educational institutions like Memorial University. We believe that this centre will help to foster and promote the kind of partnerships and innovation that have made Voisey's Bay possible; not just technical innovation, but social, political and economic innovation as well."

"The $23.1 million in federal support for this project is a worthwhile investment on many levels," said Todd Russell, member of Parliament for Labradoron behalf of Joseph McGuire, minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. "It is worthwhile in terms of meeting the Government of Canada's commitment to the Voisey's Bay Development, increasing MemorialUniversity's research and development capabilities, and maximizing economic benefits associated with the project. It also underscores the Government of Canada's commitment to increasing the amount of R&D funding available in Atlantic Canada."

“This is truly a centre for innovation, for invention, for creativity - and I can't think of a better place for this facility than Newfoundlandand Labrador,” said Tom Hedderson, minister of education. “This centre is good for industry leaders, researchers and students alike. As minister of education, I am particularly impressed with what it will offer the students. Indeed, I would hope that this centre will lure the best and brightest students from around the world to Memorial.”

Operations at the new facility will not be restricted to the mining industry. The Inco Innovation Centre will also play a role in social science research and knowledge transfer. For example, the facility houses the offices of Dr. David Natcher, the Canada Research Chair in Aboriginal Studies, and the Centre for Aboriginal Research. In his research, Dr. Natcher is exploring alternative models of community development that take into account not only Labrador’s commercial development versus the subsistence needs of its aboriginal peoples, but also other factors such as aboriginal health, nutritional status, educational achievement, access to desired resources, and aboriginal rights.

Some other units located in the Inco Innovation Centre include:

· Offices of the Major Research Partnerships and the Core Research Equipment and Instrument Training Network (CREAIT)

· Genesis Innovation Works, a development space for new enterprises; other units of the Genesis Group will also move to the building’s third floor in 2006.

· Schoolof GraduateStudies

· Office of Research

Today’s opening ceremony was held in the lecture theatre, what some consider the hub of the Inco Innovation Centre. The large lecture theatre will enable people to come together for learning, business and community development initiatives. The tiered set-up of the lecture theatre is fully equipped for videoconferencing and multimedia presentations and seats up to 300 people. A special room off the atrium and adjacent to the theatre — equipped with a kitchenette and cloak room — serves as a reception area for special events. In addition to regularly scheduled lectures, the theatre will be the site of seminars and colloquia on research ranging from the arts, humanities and social sciences to business and engineering. Equally important will be the community events and special announcements that are a special part of Memorial's outward and community-oriented focus.

As part of the official opening ceremonies, Memorial is hosting a panel presentation aimed at exploring the inspirations of innovation. The panel discussion is titled The Innovation Continuum: Resource-based innovations become the launching pad for global business and includes panelists Siobhan Coady, Newfound Genomics; James Igloliorte, Labrador Inuit Development Corporation; Jamie King, Verafin; Dr. Hilary Rodrigues, Rodrigues Winery & Natural Newfoundland Nutraceuticals; and Nick Sheard, Inco. The panel discussion gets under way at 7:30 p.m.on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2005, in the lecture theatre, room IIC-2001 of the centre. The panel discussion is sponsored by the Genesis Centre and the Leslie Harris Centre for Regional Policy and Development.

The Inco Innovation Centre was designed by John Hearn Architect Ltd. and built by Marco Services Ltd. over the structure of the former Thomson Student Centre (TSC). The TSCwas officially opened May 25, 1968, by Lord Thomson of Fleet, chancellor of MemorialUniversityfrom 1961 to 1968. It served as the focus of student life on the St. John'scampus for over three decades. The TSCwas built in the late 1960s when Memorial had a student population of about 5,000. When the student population soared to 16,000 in the late 1990s, a new centre for student life was placed high on the priority list. The Opportunity Fund campaign enabled the construction of the Smallwood Centre, a university centre that spans the Prince Philip Driveand accommodates a wide range of student-focused university and student union services, as well as a food court and other amenities serving the campus community.

About MemorialUniversity

Memorial is Atlantic Canada’s largest university, with a student enrolment of nearly 18,000, at four locations: St. John’sincluding the Marine Institute, GrenfellCollegein Corner Brook, the Labrador Institute in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, and Harlow Campus in England. MemorialUniversityis the largest R&D enterprise in Newfoundlandand Labrador. The setting, natural resources, cultural heritage, specialized expertise and commitment to the community have led to the creation of renowned programs in areas such as earth sciences, oil and gas studies, cold ocean research, music, linguistics, folklore, archaeology, fine arts, education, genetics, as well as rural health care.

About Inco Ltd.

Inco Limited is one of the world’s premier mining and metals companies and the world’s second largest producer of nickel. Inco is also an important producer of copper, cobalt and precious metals and a major producer of value-added specialty nickel products. In 2004, Inco employed 10,973 people worldwide and had sales of $4.3 billion. Inco’s strength is built on a base of strong and profitable production from our global operations, the broadest range of value-added products in the nickel industry and a worldwide marketing network that extends to over 40 countries. With two of the world’s best nickel ore-bodies, Voisey’s Bay in Newfoundlandand Labrador, and Goro in New Caledoniacurrently under development, Inco is leading the industry in growth to meet future nickel demand.

About ACOA

ACOA is the federal government department responsible for helping to build economic capacity in the Atlantic Provincesby working with the people of the region — in their communities, through their institutions and with their local and provincial governments and businesses — to create jobs and enhance earned incomes.

The Government of Canada has recently strengthened its commitment to Atlantic Canada and Atlantic Canadians by launching a new five-year $708-million initiative to support economic development throughout the region. The Atlantic Investment Partnership-The Second Wave addresses areas which are fundamental to Atlantic Canada’s continued growth–investing in innovation, investing in communities, investing in people, and investing in the business climate. As part of this new commitment, the $300 million Atlantic Innovation Fund is the driving force behind the latest acceleration of Atlantic research and development. The $175 million Innovative Communities Fund assists small and rural communities strengthen their economic base.

With ACOA’s policies and programs, the region now has more R&D activity, more opportunities in rural communities, more exports and foreign investment, and more skilled entrepreneurs, making Atlantic Canada an even better place to live.

Note to editors: Photos of the Inco Innovation Centre are available at www.mun.ca/inco_opening.php

Background

INCO INNOVATION CENTRE

MemorialUniversityof Newfoundland

The Inco Innovation Centre is MemorialUniversity’s new research and innovation facility.

FUNDING

With a construction cost of $17.3 million, the Inco Innovation Centre represents a significant investment in innovation in this province by Inco Ltd., the Government of Canada and MemorialUniversity. Inco has committed $13 million towards the capital cost of the facility and $1 million annually for seven years for operations and maintenance. The federal government –through $13.1 million announced in 2003 under the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) and an additional $10 million announced today under the agency's Business Development Program -- has invested over $23.1 million in support of ongoing research and development in the centre.

FACILITIES

Containing some 9,000 sq. m., the Inco Innovation Centre houses a wide range of research, business support and educational facilities on three floors. Research related to geosciences, hydrometallurgy and the Voisey’s Bay mineral deposit will be concentrated on the first floor of the building.

Also on the first level are labs for health, safety and risk engineering, and process engineering and corrosion reduction. The building is also designed to house a small scale model of a hydrometallurgical plant.

Other research and educational facilities in the Inco Innovation Centre include:

Level 1

Major Research Partnerships and CREAIT Network

Major Research Partnerships is responsible for financial and administrative support for Memorial’s existing major, AIF-funded research projects, and for assisting in the development of new major projects. An innovative approach to maximizing the use of research equipment, the CREAIT Network is an integrated university-wide network of thematic, core research support and training facilities.

Health and Safety Laboratory

Work in this lab will study the safe operation and design of processing facilities, and prevent or minimize their environmental and health impacts. In addition, researchers here will develop new models and methodologies in risk analysis and probabilistic risk assessment.

Corrosion and Sample Reduction Laboratory

This laboratory will initially be used to develop an improved understanding of the corrosion processes and mechanisms that occur while nickel-sulfide concentrate is subjected to hydrometallurgical treatments. Scientists hope this knowledge will help reduce maintenance costs associated with corrosion and decrease production downtime.

Process Modeling and Simulation Laboratory

Researchers in this lab will develop simulation capability for optimizing a wide range of applications related to process engineering.

Core Storage

Drill cores generated from mineral exploration and ore body delineation are an important source of information and material for mineral deposit research.

Process Engineering Hydrometallurgy Laboratory and Pilot Plant

Here research and development of hydrometallurgical processes will take place as scientists study process improvements, innovations in processes, seek enhancement in the performance of materials and solution chemistry, and find efficiencies in process engineering.

Geophysics Laboratory

As part of the Geophysics Research Program, this lab will develop enhanced interpretation methods for gravity data, seismology and integration.

Process Control and Automation Laboratory

Advanced process control techniques will be developed in this laboratory. Initially, the focus of research will be Inco’s hydrometallurgy plant; developing new control techniques for unit operations and plant-wide process control methodologies.

ICPMS Laboratory

The Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICPMS) Laboratory consists of two instruments: a single collector for primarily determining the trace element compositions of minerals, fabricated metals and artifacts; and a multi-collector used for determining the source and history of some sorts of materials.

SEMLaboratory

The Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) Laboratory is used for imaging small specimens at magnifications near 50,000 times their actual size. The SEMis equipped with a unique Mineral Liberation Analysis (MLA) unit which is the first ever to use a new technology for high-resolution, ultra-high speed electron detection.

SIMS Laboratory

In the Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) Laboratory a sample surface can be bombarded with a primary beam and the emitted secondary ions measured by mass spectrometry. For the Voisey’s Bay deposit in Labrador, the SIMS will help trace the source of sulphur in the ore system as an advanced exploration tool for deep, hidden ore resources.

Level 2

CanadaResearch Chair in Aboriginal Studies

Given the economic necessities of resource development, coupled with the ever-changing political landscape of aboriginal rights, it is fortunate that Canada Research Chair Dr.David Natcher is providing us with critical and informed analysis of these two areas of public concern. By promoting collaborative relationships with new and existing partners, both internal and external to the university, Dr. Natcher is strengthening Memorial’s research capacity in cultural ecology and the general cultural milieu of Newfoundlandand Labrador.

Centre for Aboriginal Research

The Centre for Aboriginal Research (CFAR) consists of senior research associates, visiting scholars, and graduate students from across Canadawhose research interests focus on aboriginal issues. Aboriginal communities and organizations contribute to and help guide the activities of the centre. This includes identification of research priorities, partnering in proposal development, developing appropriate guidelines and protocols for community-based research, and disseminating research outcomes at the community level.

Genesis Innovation Works

Space in Genesis Innovation Works will be available for technology-based projects with near-term commercial potential, such as short-term R&D projects or trial production runs. Genesis Innovation Works is part of the Genesis Group,the technology-commercialization arm of MemorialUniversity. The other components of Genesis Group are the Genesis Centre, Genesis Research and Genesis Biolabs.

  • RAVEN

The Remote Aerial Vehicle for ENvironmental-monitoring (RAVEN) group at MemorialUniversityis working with industrial partner Provincial Aerospace Limited (PAL) to develop ground breaking technology for maritime surveillance using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).

  • Cathexis Innovations Inc.

Cathexis is a global provider of RFID technology. Cathexis’ offerings include wireless, mobile RFID readers, advanced integration software and RFID application models built on its proprietary RFID Engine architecture. RFID, like barcodes, is a form of automated identification and data capture technology. RFID is ideal in virtually any industry for tagging, tracking and managing assets such as in the supply chain or inventory control.

Schoolof GraduateStudies

The Schoolof Graduate Studiesprovides a focus for graduate activity across the university and supports more than 2,000 students as active members of a large and energetic community of scholars.

Beatrice Watts Boardroom

The Inco Innovation Boardroom is named in honour of the late Dr. Beatrice Watts, a distinguished educator and Labradorian. Naming the room in her honour symbolizes the close ties between the Inco Innovation Centre and Labrador.

Office of Research

The Office of Research acts as a liaison between faculty members and the various research funding organizations. Last year researchers at MemorialUniversitygenerated just over $80 million in external funding in support of their research efforts.

Level 3

While not yet fully completed plans for the third floor of the IIC include:

The Genesis Group

The Genesis Group is comprised of three divisions Genesis Research, Genesis Centre and the Genesis Innovation Works. Genesis Research is the Technology Commercialization arm of MemorialUniversity. This division monitors the research conducted at the university to identify promising discoveries. The division manages the intellectual property, identifies appropriate business partners to whom the technology is transferred or a spin-off company is created to bring the technology to market. Genesis Research also works with industry to identify problems and opportunities and provides access to university researchers to form partnership initiatives.

The Genesis Centre is a support network for technology-based ventures, which have high-growth potential, and are seeking business guidance and capital. The Genesis Centre helps selected enterprises gain access to the marketing, finance and management expertise of world-class mentors and board personnel. It also connects entrepreneurs to the multi-disciplinary expertise resident at Memorial University of Newfoundland. By helping these entrepreneurs develop comprehensive business plans and implement effective advisory boards, the centre prepares promising ventures for private investment.

Genesis Innovation Works

Genesis Innovation Works is located on the second floor of the Inco Innovation Centre but additional space has been allocated on the third floor. This space is intended as dynamic space deliberately designed to enable entrepreneurs and inventors to work together with minimal management constraints to develop innovative ideas at the "fuzzy front end" of technology. The space is designed to allow prototype development, electronic assembly, calibration and testing.

The Innovation Works will also provide space for partnership initiatives in which industry can avail of the world class expertise and facilities at MemorialUniversity.

Multi-disciplinary research space

The Inco Innovation Centre will also house a project research space for community-based interdisciplinary research. The intention is to provide a supportive environment of office and meeting space where widely dispersed groups from a wide array of disciplines can come together to work on common and finite projects with predetermined timelines.

THOMSON STUDENT CENTRE

The IncoInnovationCenterwas built over the Thomson Student Centre (TSC). The TSCwas officially opened May 25, 1968, by Lord Thomson of Fleet, chancellor of MemorialUniversityfrom 1961 to 1968. It served as the focus of student life on the St. John'scampus for over three decades. However, the TSCwas built in the late 1960s when Memorial had a student population of about 5,000. When the student population soared to 16,000 in the late 1990s, a new centre for student life was placed high on the priority list. The Opportunity Fund campaign raised funds for the building of the Smallwood Centre, a university centre that spans the Prince Philip Driveand accommodates a wide range of student-focused university and student union services, as well as a food court and other amenities serving the campus community.

About MemorialUniversity

Memorial is Atlantic Canada’s largest university, with a student enrolment of nearly 18,000, at four locations: St. John’sincluding the Marine Institute, GrenfellCollegein Corner Brook, the Labrador Institute in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, and Harlow Campus in England. MemorialUniversityis the largest R&D enterprise in Newfoundlandand Labrador. The setting, natural resources, cultural heritage, specialized expertise and commitment to the community have led to the creation of renowned programs in areas such as earth sciences, oil and gas studies, cold ocean research, music, linguistics, folklore, archaeology, fine arts, education, genetics, as well as rural health care.

About Inco Ltd.

Inco Ltd. is one of the world’s premier mining and metals companies and the world’s second largest producer of nickel. Inco is also an important producer of copper, cobalt and precious metals and a major producer of value-added specialty nickel products. In 2004, Inco employed 10,973 people worldwide and had sales of $4.3 billion. Inco’s strength is built on a base of strong and profitable production from our global operations, the broadest range of value-added products in the nickel industry and a worldwide marketing network that extends to over 40 countries. With two of the world’s best nickel ore-bodies, Voisey’s Bay in Newfoundlandand Labradorand Goro in New Caledoniacurrently under development, Inco is leading the industry in growth to meet future nickel demand.

About ACOA

The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) is the federal government department responsible for helping to build economic capacity in the Atlantic Provincesby working with the people of the region – in their communities, through their institutions and with their local and provincial governments and businesses – to create jobs and enhance earned incomes.

The Government of Canada has recently strengthened its commitment to Atlantic Canada and Atlantic Canadians by launching a new five-year $708-million initiative to support economic development throughout the region. The Atlantic Investment Partnership-The Second Wave addresses areas which are fundamental to Atlantic Canada’s continued growth—investing in innovation, investing in communities, investing in people, and investing in the business climate. As part of this new commitment, the $300 million Atlantic Innovation Fund is the driving force behind the latest acceleration of Atlantic research and development. The $175 million Innovative Communities Fund assists small and rural communities strengthen their economic base.

With ACOA’s policies and programs, the region now has more R&D activity, more opportunities in rural communities, more exports and foreign investment, and more skilled entrepreneurs, making Atlantic Canada an even better place to live.

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