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Past Winners

Category 1: Small and Medium-Sized Companies

Advances in Ultrasound Technology
University of British Columbia + Ultrasonix Medical Corporation
Advances in Ultrasound Technology
Advances in Ultrasound Technology
Ultrasonix’s innovative open architecture system gave researchers Robert Rohling and Septimiu (Tim) Salcudean real-time access to the raw data required to develop capabilities for ultrasound machines that were not possible with proprietary models. They then developed novel imaging techniques for new clinical uses and provided technical input to Ultrasonix on the features suitable for research.

Real-time elastography, as an example, allows researchers to distinguish hard tissue from soft. It has the potential to impact cancer diagnosis and treatment significantly, and could lead to substantial savings for our health care system by reducing the number of biopsies required and enabling more accurate treatment. This partnership led to the acceptance of the Sonix RP series as the new standard of ultrasound for research labs worldwide.

Category 2: Large Companies

Novel Technologies for Bioremediation of Groundwater Pollutants
University of Toronto + Geosyntec Consultants
Novel Technologies for Bioremediation of Groundwater Pollutants
Novel Technologies for Bioremediation of Groundwater Pollutants
This partnership, led by researcher Elizabeth Edwards, developed effective techniques for using bacteria to clean up contaminated groundwater sites, mainly those polluted by a common dry-cleaning agent (perchloroethene) and a degreasing solvent (trichloroethene). Linked to significant health problems for more than 80 years, both rank among the world’s most common and persistent groundwater pollutants.

Traditional clean-up costs are exorbitant, and treatment processes are very slow. The researchers created a bioremediation treatment, a microbial culture called KB-1, which destroys contaminants, costs less than half as much as pump-and-treat remedies, works more quickly and requires less energy. More than 200 U.S. and European sites have used the process with promising results, and its use is approved in Canada. The university received significant financial and educational benefits, produced more than 70 scientific articles and attracted international attention.

Category 3: Two or More Companies

A Fruitful Partnership in Green Technologies
Université de Sherbrooke + Enerkem Inc. | Fractal Systems Inc. | CRB Innovations Inc.
A Fruitful Partnership inGreen Technologies
A Fruitful Partnership inGreen Technologies
Since the 1970s, chemical engineer Esteban Chornet has been unveiling the fundamental principles of biomass conversion. Two distinct approaches have emerged. For quasi-homogenous biomass, the key strategy is destructuring, which separates the complex biomass matrix into constitutive families, from which marketable molecules can be produced. Destructuring can be applied to non-biomass feed stocks such as heavy oil and bitumen.

For heterogeneous biomass, such as urban waste, gasification creates a homogeneous intermediate synthetic gas. Subsequent catalytic conversion creates bio-fuels and green chemicals. Enerkem uses gasification in the bio-energy and bio-fuels sectors, while Fractal and CRB work with destructuring technologies. The partnership has created more than 70 jobs in Quebec and Alberta. Enerkem, CRB, Ethanol Greenfield and Quebec’s Ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune have funded a research chair at the university.

Leo Derikx Award

McMaster Advanced Control Consortium
McMaster University + ArcelorMittal Dofasco Inc. | E.I. DuPont Canada | Essar Steel Algoma Inc. | Honeywell Process Solutions | L’Impériale | Johnson Controls Inc. | PepsiCo Foods Canada | Praxair Inc. | Suncor Énergie Inc. | Tembec
McMaster Advanced Control Consortium
McMaster Advanced Control Consortium
In this consortium, member companies partner with a core group of McMaster faculty researchers, led by Chris Swartz, to develop and apply technologies that enhance manufacturing operations and save Canada’s industry-leading companies millions of dollars per year. Process automation uses monitoring systems, statistical analysis and optimization to develop technology that improves efficiency in industry.

The McMaster Advanced Control Consortium (MACC) made significant advances in multivariate statistical methods–analyzing multiple variables to predict outcomes–that have been applied to fault diagnosis systems and used tomonitor operating performance. The researchers pioneered real-time optimization, the continual evaluation and adjustment of operating conditions to increase productivity.MACC’s collaborative structure allows companies to influence research-in-progress and adopt early technology models to gain years of lead time over competitors.