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RPC provides comprehensive technical assistance.

The Research and Productivity Council (RPC), located in Fredericton, was established by Act of the Provincial Legislature in 1962. It is a scientific organization dedicated to the task of providing technical assistance to New Brunswick industry.

Operating on a fee-for-service basis, RPC undertakes contract research and delivers services to clients in industry and government. Its primary focus is to support growth in the New Brunswick economy through industrial expansion and increased utilization of the province's natural resources. RPC also undertakes projects for clients elsewhere in Canada and abroad in areas of technical specialization.

The organization is governed by a Council appointed by the LieutenantGovernor and currently consists of 13 representatives from industry, commerce, labour, higher education and government. The Chairman of the Council reports annually to the New Brunswick Legislature through the Premier.

R.S. Boorman, RPC's executive director, is the chief executive officer and is an ex-officio member of the governing Council.

Currently, over 100,000 square feet of engineering and pilot plant facilities, as well as laboratory and office space, are used by a staff of over 130 scientists, engineers and technicians. RPC also maintains five regional offices throughout the province. Located in Saint John, Moncton, Newcastle, Bathurst and Edmundston, these offices help to facilitate contact with industrial clients.

Technical assistance is offered through the services of seven departments covering such areas as nondestructive testing, metallurgy, applied mineralogy, mineral processing, fuel technology, electronics, aquaculture, computer-aided engineering, food technology, biotechnology, and electroorganic synthesis. Extensive testing and analytical services are also provided.

A comprehensive information service is maintained for use of staff and industry. Standards retrieval, patent search and online database access to world wide sources of technical and scientific information is available.

The niche RPC fills, particularly for small industry in the province is one of providing the technical edge needed to compete in today's market place. This edge has taken the form of innovative solutions to a quality assurance problem; prototype design of a high-tech product; suggestions on how to improve plant efficiency; or, how to add value to a company's present product line.

RPC is endeavouring to contribute to the technical leadership needed by business in the province and elsewhere, to compete effectively for export markets and to establish new enterprises. These efforts have been assisted by a five-year (1988-92) $20-million expansion programme funded by the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.

The needed capital has resulted in fulfilling a pressing need to both expand and modernize facilities. Plans are now being finalized for the construction of an 18,000 sq ft addition with construction slated to begin this spring.

The new two-story laboratory and office wing will house the Chemical and Biotechnical Services Department which specializes in forest and crop protection, spray technology and trace organic analysis. It will also provide new labs for RPC's Food, Fisheries and Aquaculture Department whose staff are involved in product development, fish health services and quality control.

As a further service to industry, RPC is home to the Provincial Coordinator for the National Research Council (NRC) in New Brunswick. Through the NRC's Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP), technical and financial assistance is available to companies requiring assistance. The IRAP Technology Network is accessed through Industrial Technology Advisors, based at RPC or in regional offices, who act as sources of technical information or facilitators for the various modes of IRAP assistance.

The comprehensive nature of RPC allows for a multidisciplinary approach to industrial problems. The success of this approach over the years has justified the need for RPC's establishment and the organization's continued growth.
COPYRIGHT 1990 Chemical Institute of Canada
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Copyright 1990 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:New Brunswick, Canada's Research and Technology Council
Publication:Canadian Chemical News
Date:May 1, 1990
Previous Article:Environment Canada, environmental protection - Atlantic regional laboratory.
Next Article:Nova Scotia Research Foundation Corporation technology in action.

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