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Alberta to build nanocellulose facility

July 8, 2011, Edmonton – A new Edmonton-based pilot facility will produce and study the potential applications of nanocrystalline cellulose.


July 8, 2011
By Alberta Advanced Education & Technology

July 8, 2011, Edmonton – A new
Edmonton-based pilot facility will produce and study the potential applications
of nanocrystalline cellulose (NCC). The $5.5-million pilot plant, created
through a collaboration of the provincial and federal governments in
partnership with industry under the Western Economic Partnership Agreement,
will use wood and straw pulp to create up to 100 kilograms/week of NCC for
testing in commercial applications.

Recent discoveries reveal NCC has useful
properties such as great strength, optical characteristics, and very large
surface area at the nanoscale. The pilot plant will allow researchers to test
and validate NCC from a variety of forest and agricultural materials for use in
diverse applications such as automotive components, paints, building materials,
plastics, packaging, health care products, and energy extraction. The project
opens the door to new and diverse markets for Alberta’s forest industry in
areas like composite materials, coatings, drilling fluids, and pharmaceuticals.

The project proponents are Alberta Advanced
Education and Technology and Western Economic Diversification Canada, who
jointly administer the Western Economic Partnership Agreement; Alberta
Innovates; and Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc.

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