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New energy and automobile research centres receive $73 million in funding


Oshawa, ON – A total of $73 million in funding from the federal and Ontario’s provincial government is supporting construction of two new research centres at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT).

The first to be announced, the Energy Systems and Nuclear Science Research Centre, has been allocated $45.4-million in funding from the joint federal and provincial Knowledge Infrastructure Program. The new 9,290-sq-m will house UOIT’s programs including courses in wind, solar, hydrogen, hydraulic, nuclear and geothermal energy and will. The centre will conduct leading-edge research in the clean and green energies and technologies of the future economies. It will also promote public-private research and commercialization partnerships.

UOIT is a member of the University Network of Excellence in Nuclear Engineering (UNENE), which includes key industry partners and educational institutions such as Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL), Bruce Power, Cameco and Ontario Power Generation (OPG).

Construction will begin in August and will be completed by March 2011.

“The centre will give this region, the province and Canada the energy solutions and the highly skilled workforce that will power our economy for decades to come,” said Dr Ronald Bordessa, UOIT president.

Also announced was the Automotive Centre of Excellence (ACE-Global) at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), which is receiving a total of $28 million in funding from the federal and provincial governments. The centre is a 13,585 sq-m facility that will house space for teaching and learning, a collaborative research laboratory and industry-sponsored research.

“We are thrilled that both the Harper and McGuinty governments are committed to partnering on a vision that will see ACE-Global become a global leader in designing the clean and green vehicles of the future,” said Dr Bordessa. “This new investment bolsters an industry and community in transition, providing the innovation infrastructure for a prosperous and sustainable future. This is education and research taking a leadership role in the auto recovery, and in the future of transportation in all its modes.”

ACE-Global will be a hub for the entire automotive and aviation sector, luring industry partners from around the world to access the leading-edge facility. Construction of Phase 1 of the high-tech centre began in 2007 at UOIT’s campus in the eastern Greater Toronto Area (GTA). The new funding for phase 2 of the project will expand the centre’s climatic wind tunnel and create the capacity for a rolling road, both of which are key design and testing structures. The wind tunnel is large enough to accommodate cars, buses, trucks, trains and airplane wings.

Construction on this project also begins in August.