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RDP Receives Federal Applied Research Grant

Jun 21, 2024
Student working at a printer in the CIM-TAC

A technician uses the ExOne Innovent+, a binder jet 3D printer for metal, ceramics and composites, in RDP's Centre for Innovation in Manufacturing-Technology Access Centre.

Red Deer Polytechnic (RDP) has received a significant Applied Research Tools and Instruments (ARTI) grant from the Government of Canada to help advance applied research and scientific discovery at the post-secondary institution. The ARTI grant received by RDP is valued at $170,802.  

Canada’s Ministry of Innovation, Science and Industry announced the approval of RDP’s application titled Materials Characterization Facility for Metal and Ceramic Additive Manufacturing Assessment. This ARTI grant will help the Polytechnic purchase an optical microscope and metallurgical sample preparation equipment to optimize the 3D binder jetting printing process in the Polytechnic’s Centre for Innovation in Manufacturing -Technology Access Centre (CIM-TAC). 

“We are grateful for this investment from the Government of Canada to help advance our applied research capacity, addressing more industrial challenges and contributing to the prosperity of Alberta,” says Dr. Tonya Wolfe, Associate Vice President, Applied Research. “This grant will also help to enhance teaching and learning at Red Deer Polytechnic and amplify knowledge throughout industry and communities.” 

The CIM-TAC houses the ExOne Innovent+, a binder jet 3D printer for metal, ceramics and composites, which has a variety of industrial applications that include aerospace, automotive and health care. While the ExOne Innovent+ has tremendous capabilities, an optical microscope and metallurgical sample preparation equipment will increase its effectiveness in fabricating ceramics and high alloy steels.  

Administered by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) through the College and Community Innovation (CCI) program, Red Deer Polytechnic’s grant is one of 54 recently announced federal ARTI grants collectively worth $9.4 million. These grants support the purchase of research equipment to enhance the applied research capacity of polytechnics and colleges in partnership with industry.  

As a key hub of the Alberta innovation community, the Polytechnic’s CIM-TAC houses $7.6 million in prototype and advanced manufacturing equipment, including 3D printers, laser scanners and a waterjet cutter. Experts within the CIM-TAC collaborate with clients on applied research, product and process development and improvement through technical services.  

Since 2009, more than 400 industrial projects have been completed in the CIM-TAC to support industry and the province’s economy.  

With a recent $12.9 million investment from the Government of Alberta, the CIM-TAC will increase its capacity and space, expanding from 15,000 square feet to 25,000 square feet. Construction on the CIM-TAC will begin in 2025. 

Read more about the Polytechnic’s applied research, innovation facilities and areas of focus.

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