Automotive and surface transportation
Building on Canada's excellent reputation for turning research into innovative solutions, the NRC's Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre can help you take ideas from concept to commercialization. With a proven track record, unmatched research, development and demonstration capabilities and access to innovation support, the NRC has earned a reputation as a valued contributor to the automotive and surface transportation sector including: passenger vehicles, heavy-haul and light rail, heavy-duty trucking fleets, specialized military vehicles, and first response vehicles.
The Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre performs research, technology development and demonstration aimed at helping the entire automotive supply chain, providing technology solutions ranging from targeted component development, advanced manufacturing process and prototype development, evaluation and testing, fuel efficiency, aerodynamic performance, power management, vehicle intelligence, climatic challenges, safety, and environmental impact.
The Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre offers a wide range of expertise, but focuses our innovation efforts on the following:
- Fleet Forward 2020
Advancing the performance, lowering the maintenance and operation costs and boosting productivity of ground vehicle fleets in trucking and mining, military and public transport sectors.
- Rail Vehicle and Track Optimization
Improving the safety and the operational efficiency of the Canadian railway industry through rail vehicle engineering solutions, vehicle track interaction services and track maintenance planning.
- Vehicle Propulsion Technologies
Improving the efficiency of internal combustion engines and delivering advanced propulsion technologies through vehicle hybridization and electrification.
The NRC advantage
The NRC supports Canadian vehicle manufacturers and their supply chain by strengthening their research and technology development, product innovation and manufacturing process capabilities to achieve commercially viable products and systems. Our focus:
- Improving vehicle lightweighting through the use of aluminum, sustainable materials and advanced composites as an alternative to steel and traditional plastics;
- Improving fabrication process efficiency through process simulation and optimization;
- Fabrication cost reduction through functional prototyping, low cost tooling and tool repair;
- Lowering manufacturing costs attributed to vehicle electrification;
- Enhancing the safety of vehicles and their operators;
- Reducing maintenance costs associated with vibration and accelerated wear; and
- Improving the operational efficiency of vehicles under all environmental conditions.
In addition, we specialize in delivering value-added engineering and testing services to the spectrum of the ground transportation industry.
The NRC offers you one-stop access to a vast array of expertise and on-site support to support innovation for a ground transportation industry that is clean, connected and cost-effective:
- Vehicle lightweighting
- Aluminium forming;
- Multi-material assembly;
- Low-cost, high-performance composite manufacturing;
- Sustainable and eco-friendly polymers and composites;
- Digital manufacturing
- Modeling and process simulation;
- Dynamic and structural computer modeling and analysis.
- Additive manufacturing and surface engineering
- Laser additive manufacturing;
- Cold spray additive manufacturing;
- Thermal spray coating;
- Powder metallurgy manufacturing.
- Vehicle electrification
- Safe, low cost energy storage technologies;
- Battery material development;
- Improved fuel cell manufacturing;
- Low-cost electric motors.
- Fleet management and heavy-duty vehicles
- Intelligent transportation systems;
- Safety, security and operational efficiency;
- Bluff-body aerodynamics.
- Rail technologies
- Wheel/rail interactions;
- Rail vehicle engineering for value-added railcars;
- Track maintenance planning;
- High performance rail.
Industrial R&D groups
The Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre maintains national research and technology development facilities in Ottawa, Boucherville, Saguenay, London, Concord and Vancouver.
- Aluminium technologies centre (Saguenay, QC)
- Design systems and modelling software (Boucherville, QC)
- Fuel cell development and testing (Vancouver, BC)
- Heavy vehicle testing facilities (Ottawa, ON)
- Laser processing and surface modification facility (London, ON)
- Magna-NRC composites centre of excellence (Concord, ON)
- Manufacturing and automotive innovation (London, ON)
- Polymer, composite and biomaterial processing and testing (Boucherville, QC)
- Powder metallurgy and spray coatings (Boucherville, QC)
- Wind tunnel testing facilities (Ottawa, ON)
The Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre has developed significant intellectual property, in the form of know-how, patented inventions, software, processing, and material technologies, that is available for licensing. To discuss licensing opportunities that fit your specific needs, please contact our business advisors today.
Working with us
The NRC Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre has a well-established history of working with clients by providing them with leading edge research, technical and engineering services, and developing innovative technology solutions that solve their materials & manufacturing challenges
Our unique facilities provide our clients with cutting edge infrastructure that is routinely leveraged to tackle the most challenging product development needs, engineering challenges and product testing requirements. The NRC recognizes that having timely access to such facilities is essential for our client's success in this highly competitive and global industry.
The Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Centre's strength lies in its multidisciplinary team of over 300 experts. Tap into our highly experienced and specialized staff that includes technical experts, researchers, metallurgists, physicists, chemists, software designers, programmers, and engineers in the fields of automotive systems and components, engines, batteries, fuel cell, chemistry, structures, materials, manufacturing and systems.
This world-class research infrastructure and unique expertise, customizable service options and high ethical standards make us the ideal technology choice to support your vision with innovative services and solutions.
How to work with us?
The NRC offers an array of R&D facilities and access to highly specialized scientific, technical and commercialization experts. The NRC develops and transfers technologies through consortia, collaborative research contracts, services agreements and licensing arrangements, tailoring business opportunities to the needs of individual clients, partners and licensees. Contact us to develop a project to meet your R&D challenges.
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