On March 6, 2018, Xerox, GreenCentre Canada and the Research Innovation Commercialization (RIC) Centre hosted a networking night for students and professionals in the chemical science and electronics industries at the Xerox Research Centre of Canada (XRCC). Xerox, GreenCentre and the RIC Centre are incubators for start-up companies or individuals with materials technology to find funding and bring their innovation to market. Collectively the three companies are known as ‘Innovation4D‘, with a motivation to share and connect students and industry professionals, this networking night successfully initiated in 2017.
Attendees were treated to a facility tour of the Xerox Research Centre of Canada. The first stop was the Pilot Plant scale up facility, where materials innovations from the bench move into stages of process development and then to scale up at an industrial level. Next the Printed Electronics Lab showcased aerosol gels printed on various surfaces. As well as printable antennae which are currently used today in consumer products such as liquor bottles to combat tampering. Last was an inside look into the multiple innovation hubs that are housed in the XRCC. After the tours, we were introduced to Nathan Hordy, Director of Operations at Anomera Inc., a start-up that is fixing the problem of environmentally unsafe microbeads in cosmetic skin care products. Partnering with the XRCC, the start up has since commercialized their cellulose innovation for use in cosmetics and skin care applications that are biodegradable and safe for the environment.
From speaking to the industry and start-up professionals, you get a sense that green chemistry principles permeate throughout these hubs from many standpoints. The environment among members of IntelliFLEX, Chemical Institute of Canada, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) was particularly relaxed, everyone has at least had a chance to learn something and met someone new.
Special thanks to our host organizers Xerox (Matt Hueft), GreenCentre Canada (Andy Pasternak), the Research Innovation Commercialization (RIC) Centre (Pam Banks) and IntelliFLEX for a terrific night!
Extended highlights and photos from this event can be found in the ACCN (Canadian Chemical News)!