British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT), Burnaby, Canada, and mining company Teck Resources Limited, Vancouver, have announced the opening of the Teck Copper Innovation Hub. Funded through a $1.75 million donation from Teck, the facility is expected to enable BCIT researchers and students to develop and test the use microbial copper in healthcare devices such as prosthetics and orthotics.
The Teck Copper Innovation Hub, located inside the BCIT Centre for Applied Research and Innovation, will use Additive Manufacturing to produce healthcare devices composed of copper and composites. The facility also intends to advance research projects and education focused on exploring new ways that copper can be used to enhance health and safety in real-life applications, as copper has proven effective in eliminating up to 99.9% of harmful bacteria.
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BCIT has a longstanding partnership with Teck, which includes collaborative efforts to advance research and education in British Columbia. In October 2022, Teck made the second-largest contribution to the BCIT Inspire Campaign of $5 million to support campus redevelopment, as well as new teaching & learning innovations in trades & health care. Teck has also partnered with BCIT to install over one thousand anti-microbial copper patches on high-touch surfaces at the BCIT Burnaby Campus as an extra layer of protection for those on site.
“The Teck Copper Innovation Hub combines the state-of-the-art research capabilities of BCIT Applied Research with the industry expertise of Teck to drive innovation across a growing interdisciplinary field,” stated Paul McCullough, Interim President, BCIT. `’This partnership amplifies the collaborative strength of our organisations and establishes a new hands-on learning environment that will have meaningful impact in the healthcare field and beyond.”