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CLS joins network of composite materials researchers

News International-French

19 Jun 2013

Shining synchrotron light on questions facing the composites industry is the goal of an agreement signed in Vancouver between the Canadian Light Source (CLS) and the Composites Research Network (CRN).

The CRN is an initiative of the University of British Columbia (UBC) in collaboration with academia and industry partners, which supports the composites industry in Western Canada and beyond. It was launched in January 2012 with a $9.8 million investment from Western Economic Diversification Canada.

Clustered into geographical nodes, CRN lead participants include UBC-Vancouver and Okanagan, the University of Victoria, the Composites Innovation Centre in Winnipeg, and now the CLS in Saskatoon.

The only synchrotron in Canada, the CLS will add unique research capabilities and knowledge to the network, and will help to make available materials and knowledge for the development of next generation composite materials for the aerospace, manufacturing, automotive, agriculture, and recreational vehicles sectors.  With an initial emphasis on the stress in composite structures caused by the manufacturing process, the CLS will bring unique insight into improving composite structure mechanical properties.

About the Canadian Light Source:
The Canadian Light Source is Canada’s national centre for synchrotron research and a global centre of excellence in synchrotron science and its applications. Located on the University of Saskatchewan campus in Saskatoon, the CLS has hosted 3,300 researchers from academic institutions, government, and industry from 10 provinces and territories; delivered over 26,000 experimental shifts; received over 6,600 user visits; and provided a scientific service critical in over 1,000 scientific publications,  since beginning operations in 2005.

Synchrotrons work by accelerating electrons in a tube at nearly the speed of light using powerful magnets and radio frequency waves. By manipulating the electrons, scientists can select different forms of very bright light using a spectrum of X-ray, infrared, and ultraviolet light to conduct experiments.

Synchrotrons are used to probe the structure of matter and analyze a host of physical, chemical, geological and biological processes. Information obtained by scientists can be used to help design new drugs, examine the structure of surfaces in order to develop more effective motor oils, build more powerful computer chips, develop new materials for safer medical implants, and help clean-up mining wastes, to name a few applications.

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