University of British Columbia research in areas such as wearable electronics, fish ecology and oil spills received a $9 million boost through the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. The funding was announced on January 9th by Greg Rickford, Minister of State for Science and Technology, along with UBC President Stephen Toope, Vice President Research and International John Hepbrun and NSERC Chief Operation officer Janet Walden.
Among the recipients is Mark Martinez, Director of UBC’s Advanced Papermaking Initiative and faculty associate within the Pulp and Paper Centre. Martinez and his colleagues, Professors Olson, Frigaard and Bamforth will seek to develop a production pathway to manufacture microfibrillated cellulose (MFC) from wood pulp. MFC is a green, sustainable material and the proposed research aims at developing the understanding to manufacturing this sustainably, inexpensively and in large quantities. Since MFC has the potential to displace a number of fossil-fuel derived consumer products that are not environmentally friendly, the team hopes to ensure that Canada leads the inevitable ‘green’ bio-economy revolution with a transformative technology applied to the Canadian pulp and paper industry. The team will combine scientists and engineers, in conjunction with local Canadian industrial sponsors.
PPC Faculty Associate Madjid Mohseni received renewed funding of $4.8 million from the Strategic Network Grant to continue developing innovative and affordable solutions for clean drinking water in small, rural and First Nations communities through the RES’EAU WaterNET network.
UBC received the largest number of grants of any Canadian institution among those announced, according to Prof. Toope. He went on to say “we are extremely proud of the UBC researchers who have been awarded grants in these highly competitive programs.”
Please visit UBC News for the Media Release and for more information on NSERC Funding.
Pulp and Paper Centre, UBC