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Faculty of Science
Ontario government funds Laurier Physics and Computer Science research
Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing
May 24/12| For Immediate Release
Abby Goodrum, Vice-President, Research
Kevin Crowley, Director, Communications & Public Affairs
WATERLOO – Laurier Physics and Computer Science researcher, Hongbing Fan, received funding for his Smart Grid research project through Phase II of the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Special Energy Fund program. The Honourable Brad Duguid, Ontario Minister of Economic Development and Innovation, made the announcement May 15 at OCE Discovery 2012 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
Fan’s successful proposal was to develop a “Communication Middleware System for Smart Grid.” An associate professor in Laurier’s Department of Physics and Computer Science, he will be creating a data communication and distributed computing system for use in smart energy systems.
In addition to support from OCE, Fan’s industry partner is Waterloo energy informatics company Energent Incorporated, which provides cloud based energy management information systems to a diverse customer base in Canada and internationally.
“We have been collaborating for several years with the OCE, UW, Hydro One and Milton Hydro on a transformative energy innovation project and recognized the tremendous benefit and commercial potential in Dr. Fan’s technology, a key element of any smart grid solution,” stated Gord Ellis, chief technology officer at Energent.
In 2007, the Government of Ontario asked OCE to undertake funding of special energy projects to “bring energy innovation to market for a cleaner environment.” Phase II of the Special Energy Fund program is focused on smart-grid technologies to modernize the electricity grid through secure integration of electrical infrastructure with information infrastructure. Successful Phase II projects cover a range of topics from energy storage, to efficient use of assets, to grid control. This phase will see a $3 million investment in 11 projects at 10 universities across Ontario with an additional $2.8 million from 31 partners.
“We celebrate OCE’s recognition of Hongbing Fan’s contribution to the field of clean energy,” said Abby Goodrum, Laurier’s vice-president: Research. “This is yet another example of the excellent and timely research being done in Laurier’s growing Faculty of Science.”
Total funding for the project amounts to $100,000, with contributions from the OCE and from Energent. In addition to working with Energent, Fan will also collaborate with Claudio Cańizares, a professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Waterloo.