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Funds available for collaborative aerospace projects

Jan. 14, 2015, North Bay, Ont. - Local companies, academic researchers and other organizations heard Tuesday how they can tap into millions of dollars earmarked for projects that will aid the aerospace industry.


January 14, 2015
By The North Bay Nugget

Canadore College played host to several aerospace organizations and funding agencies for an information session at its Aviation Technology Campus aimed at spreading the word about funding opportunities for projects that involve collaboration between industry and universities, colleges or research institutions.

Richard Worsfold, director of business development for Ontario Centres of Excellence, who’s been spearheading similar information sessions elsewhere in the province, said the key reason for the meetings is that the recently-created Consortium for Aerospace Research and Innovation in Canada (CARIC) has about $4 million in available funding and will soon begin receiving proposals for collaborative research and technology development projects.

Worsfold said projects could involve an new product or service for the aerospace industry and must involve collaboration with academia. He said projects that represent the best outcomes for the industry will be selected to receive funding. In addition, Worsfold said there are opportunities for groups who team up for projects to leverage funding from other organizations such as his own, as well as the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, also in attendance Tuesday.

“There’s a critical mass here,” said Worsfold, referring to the local aviation and aerospace industry and the decision to hold an information session locally.

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Dignitaries including Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Jay Aspin and Mayor Al McDonald also attended the information session along with representatives of the city’s economic development department and North Bay and District Chamber of Commerce.

Both Aspin and McDonald spoke about local efforts to attract aviation, aerospace and space industries to the city and the momentum those effort have been gaining.

The city is working to attract industry businesses to its Airport Industrial Business Park and Canadore College is expanding its aviation campus and partnering with industry, including Swiss Space Systems, which plans to test and launch sub-orbital satellites in the city.

Aspin suggested the efforts to attract the aviation, aerospace and space industries to the city could lead to a paradigm shift for North Bay similar to that which occurred when the railroads converged in the area and later when NORAD and the Canadian military located here.