Atomic Layer Deposition Tool – Testing and Process Development - Year two

Currently, no Canadian-based companies are involved in the manufacturing of state-of-the-art research tools for atomic layer deposition (ALD). Angstrom Engineering is a leading manufacturer of similar technologies – physical vapour deposition and chemical vapour deposition – and have identified an opportunity to produce the first ALD research tool manufactured entirely in Canada. ALD is a vapour phase technique that offers sequential, self-limiting surface reactions to deposit thin films with exceptional control over thickness and composition, as well as conformality and uniformity.

Development of a Raman probe for the on-line determination of pulp properties

Pulp and paper producers would profit enormously from an advanced knowledge of the physical and mechanical properties of a fibre product based upon a measure of the pulp while it is still in process. This project aims to develop such a tool. Using a laser backscattering technique called Raman spectroscopy, will calibrate the molecular bar code it reads from an in-process pulp to accurately predict the properties of a paper or other fibre products that can be made from that particular pulp.

Development of a product for outdoor temporary markings

The world is full of painted surfaces of a variety of colours and the paint industry has evolved to improve colours, longer last colour intensity, alter finishing and cover a myriad of different surfaces. However, there has been a lack of development in temporary markings or coatings that last from hours to days. This project explores the development of four paint colours that can be dry sprayed for outside recreational applications, such as temporary lines on a grassy field or a temporary mural. Harnessing the sun’s energy, the colours will fade in definable timeframes.

Synthesis of an irreversible inhibitor of Pol?

One aspect of modern drug development involves understanding how enzymes function in terms of the progress of certain diseases in humans. This MITACS project involves the synthesis of small-molecule labels that can bind to a specific enzyme of interest, so as to better understand the mode of action of this enzyme as related to the progress of cancer. This work will involve the preparation of organic molecules possessing appropriate structural features that will enable selective and irreversible binding to the desired enzyme.

Creation of candidate glucocerebrosidase PET imaging agents

Mutations in the enzyme glucocerebrosidase (GBA1) are the most common genetic risk factor for development of Parkinson’s disease (PD). PD is characterized by the buildup of abnormal protein deposits in the brain, followed by progressive loss of neurons and behavioural symptoms. Numerous studies have noted a correlation between reduced GBA1 activity and increased levels of these abnormal protein deposits in the brain, but the relationship remains poorly understood. The aim of this project is to create an inhibitor that can enter the brain and be used to determine GBA1 in the brain.

Scale-up Synthesis of New-Generation Chiral Cyclobutane-based Bisphosphane Ligands

This research project deals with the development of the next generation of a set of chemicals on an industrial scale that form a catalyst in conjunction with a metal. The new catalysts are intended to be employed by Digital Specialty Chemicals’ customer in the manufacture of plasticizers, paints, and detergents. The intern will focus on the optimized chemical synthesis of critical components toward the final products, as well as the identification of commercially more viable options in terms of solvents used for the process.

PART B- Conversion of CO2 and H2O to Syngas Using Reversible Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (RSOFCs) Technology - Year two

The main objective of this project is to demonstrate the highly promising performance of our world-leading catalysts in a scaled-up solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC) system. SOECs can efficiently convert the greenhouse gas, CO2, or mixtures of CO2 and H2O, to useful chemicals and fuels, while running on excess electricity, thus serving to store intermittent electricity generated by wind and solar.
A leading company (ATCO) has identified our technology as being their first choice for the storage of solar/wind energy through CO2 + H2O conversion to syngas (CO + H2) or ultimately to methane.

PART A- Conversion of CO2 and H2O to Syngas Using Reversible Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (RSOFCs) Technology - Year two

The main objective of this project is to demonstrate the highly promising performance of our world-leading catalysts in a scaled-up solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC) system. SOECs can efficiently convert the greenhouse gas, CO2, or mixtures of CO2 and H2O, to useful chemicals and fuels, while running on excess electricity, thus serving to store intermittent electricity generated by wind and solar.
A leading company (ATCO) has identified our technology as being their first choice for the storage of solar/wind energy through CO2 + H2O conversion to syngas (CO + H2) or ultimately to methane.

Bipolar Membranes for Electrochemical Technologies

Electrochemical water splitting into hydrogen and oxygen gas is a technology of growing importance in the clean energy storage and conversion sector. While this technology has been operating successfully for decades using liquid electroytes, emerging technology uses membranes to provide physical separation of the cathode and anode compartments and thereby separation of the product gases, while allowing ions to flow between electrolytes in order for the electrochemical reactions to occur. The membranes used in electrolyzers are typically acidic, proton exchange membranes (PEM), e.g., Nafion.

Green Chemistry for Green Solvents

A major contributor to smog formation is the release of volatile chemicals into the atmosphere which are emitted from many sources including automobile exhaust and consumer products such as paints. To combat the adverse effects smog has on air quality in North America, agencies such as Environment and Climate Change (Canada) and the Environmental Protection Agency (United States) enforce limits on the types and amounts of chemicals used in industrial applications and consumer products.

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