The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for Science and Technology, announced last week six new projects supported by the Automotive Partnership Canada (APC) initiative at the University of Windsor. The projects will support new technologies that will provide lighter material alternatives for cars, and significantly enhance battery efficiency for vehicles.
The recent announcement means these university-industry partnerships will receive almost CAD$34 million in total project support. This includes just under CAD$19 million in funding through the Automotive Partnership Canada initiative and nearly CAD$15 million from industry and other partners.
"Because, we are not unique in the problems we face, we can sell our solutions to the world, creating jobs, growth and prosperity here at home," said Minister Goodyear. "Innovation is about taking ideas to market and solving problems. The Automotive Partnership Canada initiative is all that and will lead to greener, better-performing vehicles while creating Canadian jobs and strengthening our economy."
From the APC initiative just over $4 million dollars will go to long-lived, high-energy-density and low-cost lithium-ion batteries for automotive, grid energy and medical. Lithium-ion batteries for cars must meet more stringent requirements than those for portable electronics.
They must last for 10 years, sustain over 3,000 charge-discharge cycles and withstand extremes of temperature. Batteries for grid energy storage and medical devices have similar requirements. A major goal of this project is to rapidly identify those cell chemistries and operating ranges that give optimum battery cycle and calendar life.
Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) are being developed worldwide as clean energy conversion devices. Promising applications for these fuel cells include materials handling backup power, residential co-generation, fleet vehicles and portable electronics.
However, the biggest impact fuel cells could have lies in the commercial automotive sector, which holds great potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. A significant technical barrier to full commercialization is the high amount of platinum required for each fuel cell. This partnership will receive $5.5 million dollars of funding and will bring together 17 scientists and engineers from nine universities across Canada, who will work on reducing the cost of PEMFCs through the exploration of alternative non-platinum metals and the fabrication of advanced layer structures.
The remainder of the APC funding will go to:
- Development of a Hybrid Electrohydraulic-Hydromechanical Drawing Process for Production of Lightweight Automotive Parts
- Development of Novel Titanium-Based Powder Production, Consolidation and Shaping Processes for Low-Cost Titanium Automotive Parts Manufacturing
- Magnesium-Intensive Multi-Material Automotive Structures: Fabrication and Performance
- Studies of Electromechanical Processes in Automotive Materials
APC is a five-year, $145-million initiative that supports collaborative R&D and pushes the Canadian automotive industry to greater levels of innovation.
Source and image: Hybrid Cars
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