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November 05, 2005— Ottawa, Ontario

Science and Technology for a Stronger Canada

2004-2005 marked a year of outstanding achievements for the National Research Council (NRC) as it moved forward with new initiatives and programs designed to build Canada's innovation capacity in the 21st century and serve the interests of Canada, Canadian industry and all Canadians.

For example, in the past year, two different NRC research teams reported progress in the fight against Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), improving our understanding of the disease, and finding ways to better combat its effects.

This past year, NRC researchers developed a technique that will allow astronomers around the world to observe beyond the technological limits of current ground-based telescopes. NRC's expertise in designing state of the art equipment for astronomers has definite benefits for Canadian industry. Nanowave Technologies of Toronto is now building NRC-designed equipment for a next-generation, international radio telescope being built in the Atacama Desert in Chile.

NRC has significantly increased its commercialization activity in other areas as well. It achieved close to a 60 per cent increase in the number of licenses signed with Canadian industry and other clients for its technology, while the NRC Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) helped to build the innovative capacity of some 11,000 small and medium sized firms across Canada. With advice and support from IRAP, a Dartmouth, Nova Scotia company succeeded in starting a new product line to help scientists monitor the state of the earth's oceans. This newly developed technology can measure the temperature and salinity of oceans anywhere in the world, gathering valuable data about climate change.

Dr. Pierre Coulombe was appointed as NRC President in February 2005.
Dr. Pierre Coulombe was appointed as NRC President in February 2005.

NRC continued to help stimulate community-based innovation across Canada in partnership with key stakeholders. In Vancouver for example, NRC was one of several partners that worked together to help launch the unique, large-scale demonstration project intended to accelerate the commercialization of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies developed in Canada. From fuel cells in Vancouver to medical devices and diagnostics in Winnipeg, these activities are driving real economic growth in regions across the country.

These achievements and many more are detailed in NRC's recently released annual report for 2004-2005.

The report celebrates these achievements not only as advances in science and engineering research but also as steps toward a stronger, more competitive Canada. They are the achievements of more than 4,000 NRC employees from Victoria to St. John's working on behalf of all Canadians and putting science to work for Canada, everyday.

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