Engineering

Supergreen: turning renewable natural gas waste into fertilizer with U of T startup, CHAR Technologies

Sub-title: 
Company wins $750,000 in first investment from Sustainable Development Technology Canada’s Natural Gas Fund
Author: 
Brianna Goldberg

The problem with ‘green energy’ solutions is that some of them aren’t so much ‘green’ as they are ‘green-ish’ or ‘green-er’ than alternatives. 

Take renewable natural gas. It’s seen as a clean and carbon-neutral alternative to fossil fuels. But as a form of energy rising from decomposing organic materials in landfills, natural gas starts out quite dirty.

NSERC awards almost $50 million to U of T researchers

Sub-title: 
Funds will accelerate work relating to nano systems, memory and more
Author: 
Terry Lavender

University of Toronto researchers have received almost $50 million in funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) to study topics ranging from sustainable aviation fuel to mapped circuitries of the human brain.

U of T faculty and students received 214 discovery grants, 18 discovery accelerator supplements and 91 scholarships and fellowships from the federal funding agency – worth $48,719,930 in total.

Improving kids’ literacy with singing stickers: U of T social startup goes global

Sub-title: 
Attollo Social Enterprise vies for US $1 million Hult Prize after pilots in Kenya, India
Author: 
Jamie Hunter

A child-friendly handheld device that makes inanimate objects talk and sing is part of a University of Toronto startup’s strategy to improve vocabulary and communication skills for young children in impoverished communities.

“We wanted to create something that was play-based,” said U of T alumna Aisha Bukhari, a co-founder of Attollo Social Enterprise, the team behind the innovation. “We wanted it to be affordable, scalable and loved by children.”

New tech to watch: three products improving lung transplants, seizure prevention, nanoprobing

Sub-title: 
Commercializing graduate research into market-ready products
Author: 
Tyler Irving

Watching a lung transplant at Toronto General Hospital five years ago, alumnus Geoff Frost noticed a problem: keeping lungs alive outside the body requires large, cumbersome machinery that monopolizes hospital space.

“It takes up an entire operating room,” says Frost, an alumnus from both U of T's Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering and Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering.

From better cancer treatments to healthier crops: new backing for U of T scientists

Author: 
Jenny Hall

Six U of T researchers have been awarded a total of $14.6 million from the Canada Foundation for Innovation for infrastructure in support of projects tackling topics as diverse as cancer treatment and food security.

New chip makes testing for antibiotic-resistant bacteria faster, easier

Sub-title: 
University of Toronto researchers' diagnostic chip reduces testing time from days to one hour, allowing doctors to pick the right antibiotic the first time
Author: 
Marit Mitchell

It’s a device that could transform a doctor’s ability to treat infections: a test for antibiotic resistance that works in just one hour – instead of several days. 

Drone experts: U of T to train 150 grad students to fight forest fires, monitor crops, pipelines and railways with drones

Author: 
Tyler Irving

The word ‘drone’ often conjures up invasive images of military aircraft, but if Professor Hugh Liu of the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies has his way, that perception is about to change.

Liu has just received $1.65 million from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) to train 150 new experts in the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for a variety of useful purposes, from agriculture to environmental monitoring.

Restoring eyesight and healing brains: how hydrogels can boost the work of stem cells

Sub-title: 
U of T researchers show that engineered hydrogels not only help with stem cell transplantation, but actually speed healing in both the eye and brain
Author: 
Jovana Drinjakovic

It's a discovery that, in early lab trials, has been shown to partially reverse blindness and help the brain recover from stroke.

Using a gel-like biomaterial called a hydrogel, University of Toronto scientists and engineers have made a breakthrough in cell transplantation that keeps cells alive and helps them integrate better into tissue.

From 3D printing for kids to spine surgery tools: U of T celebrates its top innovators

Author: 
Paul Fraumeni

The spirit of innovation and invention at U of T soared on May 7, when the University of Toronto paid tribute to researchers and students who have made their mark with a host of technologies and successful startup companies.

“The University of Toronto’s long history and acclaimed reputation as an institution is well known,” said President Meric Gertler to guests at U of T Celebrates Innovation. “Lesser known, I would suggest, is our role as a leading innovation and startup powerhouse.”

Research2Reality: understanding the ground-breaking work supported by your taxes

Sub-title: 
U of T science advisor launches national research advocacy program
Author: 
Paul Fraumeni

When University of Toronto physicist Dick Peltier began researching the interaction between the Earth’s land, atmosphere, water and biosphere, he created mathematical models depicting how climate evolved over 750 million years and how it will change in the future.

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