News in Brief
**The Composites Innovation Centre wishes you a joyful holiday and a very happy, prosperous and healthy new year**
CIC: A Year End Review
It’s been another whirlwind year at the Composites Innovation Centre (CIC) with many achievements to hang our hat on. It has now been a full year that we have been operating out of our new 21,000 sq.ft. facility (158 Commerce Drive) in the Tuxedo Business Park which is four times the size of our previous site. The move was made to accommodate the CIC’s strategic growth and support deployment of new services and capabilities to meet the needs of our industry partners. In this edition we would like to share a small collection of highlights and achievements over the last year. They are as follows:
- Collaborated with Motor Coach Industries (MCI) and their local composite fabricator, Frank Fair Industries, to develop MCI / Frank Fair’s ability to design and manufacture composite sandwich panels using soy based bio-foam and bio-fibre reinforced composite facesheets for coach door assemblies and floor panels.
- In conjunction with MacDon Industries several components were designed and fixtures for robotic trimming and assembly jigs were developed with Eastside Industrial Coatings and Composites, the local manufacturer of these parts.
- Magellan Aerospace Winnipeg’s Advanced Composites Manufacturing Centre started production of the composite based horizontal stabilizer assembly for the F-35 aircraft. We have been working with Magellan closely to support this landmark achievement in our Aerospace sector.
- The first collaborative project between the Composites Research Network (a University of British Columbia initiative), CIC and an industry clientwas launched. Several similar collaborative projects involving Manitoba companies will be activated shortly.
Great Plains Bioproducts Consortium, consisting of the CIC, the Life Science Association of Manitoba, North Dakota State University, Aspen Research (Minnesota) and the BioBusiness Alliance of Minnesota, created a US based not for profit corporation focused on aggressively expanding the industrial and consumer adoption of bioproducts through international collaboration and cooperation. Several projects are underway with members and affiliates. Plans to expand the network are being developed to improve linkages between Manitoba enterprises and those from South of the border for roll out in early 2013.
- We installed a large5-axis router with a 10 foot working envelope for plug and tool manufacturing. This addition provides us with the local capability to assist with design, analysis, tooling and prototyping all under one roof.
**Please note the Composites Innovation Centre will be closed from December 24 – January 2
FibreCITY Paradigm: Intelligent Fibre – Precision Agriculture – An International Gold Standard.
Manitoba is at the heart of a region that is uniquely positioned to lead an advanced biomaterials industry. Four critical factors are needed to realize this goal:
- A sustainable and reliable supply of a suitable bio-mass commodity;
- A strong research and development infrastructure;
- A dynamic manufacturing sector to add value to the bio-mass; and
- The capability to integrate the value chain from end to end.
The Prairie Agriculture Fibre Characterization Industrial Technology Capability (FibreCITY) initiative will provide the fourth critical success factor that links together with the other three that either already exist or are being developed in the region.
What will FibreCITY do?
Provide Canadian industry with preferential access to the world’s first centre of excellence for agricultural fibre grading;
Provide Canada with a unique opportunity to develop fibre crop varieties, such as flax and hemp, that will give Canadian producers the ability to capture maximum value from straw and its components;
Assemble a unique suite of equipment specifically designed for the evaluation of fibre crops;
Establish international standards for fibre and product quality
- Generate natural fibre material data bases to enable wide spread adoption by industry