Ontario's aerospace industry is about to boldly go where it hasn't gone before as the result of a new research and development partnership.
Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) and the Ontario Aerospace Council (OAC) are teaming up with the newly formed Consortium for Aerospace Research and Innovation in Canada (CARIC) to take the province's aerospace sector to new heights in innovation.
The partnership, announced by Reza Moridi, Ontario's Minister of Research and Innovation at OCE's Annual General Meeting on Oct. 21, will have the three parties work together to identify and develop opportunities for increased industry-academic R&D collaborations in Ontario, home to an aerospace sector second in size only to Quebec as Canada's largest.
"It is good to see these three organizations coming together to make Ontario's aerospace sector even more successful," Minister Moridi said. "By bringing together industry and academia, the sky could well be the limit in terms of potential outcomes for the sector and for Ontario's economy."
An OCE business development manager will be assigned full time to the role of identifying and facilitating the industry-academic collaborations. OCE and the OAC previously worked together supporting collaborative R&D in the province's aerospace industry through OCE's Collaboration Voucher Program.
"This initiative builds on the well-established relationship we have with the OAC," said Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO of OCE. "I expect we will see a great many incredible new ideas and innovations taking flight as a result."
Formed in April, CARIC is a national research and technology network that unites stakeholders from industry, universities, colleges and research institutions; bringing together the best of the entire Canadian industry to identify strategic aerospace technology areas and facilitate collaborative research and development. CARIC has committed to having regional representation across Canada.
"The establishment of this agreement represents a significant milestone to CARIC's deployment," said CARIC President and CEO, Denis Faubert. "Collaborations with organizations such as the OAC and the OCE will enable an inclusive, impactful aerospace research network, which is an integral part of CARIC's vision."
As the voice of the aerospace industry in Ontario, the OAC will provide the strategic thrust for this initiative.
"Establishing a mechanism for Ontario aerospace companies to access collaborative R&D opportunities is essential to competing on a global scale." Says OAC Chairman Todd Young, "This relationship will not only provide maximum access to funding opportunities in an easier format, but also it will ensure that all Ontario aerospace companies will have the opportunity to participate in a unified way".
CARIC was established through funding support from industry and the Government of Canada with a mandate to lead the advancement of R&D in the aerospace sector at a national level.