To adapt to Canada’s constantly changing construction landscape, industry is seeking safer, more energy-efficient and affordable construction materials and technologies, as well as more effective decision-making tools. In response, the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has launched four new research programs to help the construction industry develop, validate and facilitate the market adoption of new products and systems.
The new research programs will make it possible to extend the lifespan of Canada’s 75,000 highway concrete bridges, construct economical and safe 5- to 12-storey wood buildings, and retrofit buildings such as offices, retail stores and schools to significantly reduce energy consumption. In addition, one of the new programs will increase market access and intensify collaboration with provinces, territories and industry to facilitate the implementation of regulations resulting from the National Model Construction Codes.
The NRC will use its expertise in concrete infrastructure to help industry develop and validate performance materials and structural systems to extend the service life of bridges and reduce the life cycle operation and maintenance costs of both new and existing bridges. NRC will provide industry with strategic research, technical services, and large and full-scale demonstrations for high performance concrete and composite materials and reliable condition assessment technology.
The NRC is partnering with construction product manufacturers and building owners to develop technologies in order to support an increasing demand for wood buildings between 5 and 12-storey in height. NRC will provide clients with technical solutions to create wood-based construction products with improved durability, fire safety, acoustic performance, cost-effectiveness, and speed of construction.
The NRC will respond to market demand for high-performance energy-efficient buildings with research solutions spanning the development and validation of new products and systems, as well as monitoring in laboratories and real buildings. NRC will collaborate with industry clients on strategic projects and technical services relating to building envelope engineering, intelligent building environmental control, and interactive platforms to connect building energy systems with the Smart Grid interface.
The NRC will provide industry clients with evaluations, designs, and technical guides to help lower the cost, risk and time required to commercialize and demonstrate compliance of new building products and systems. NRC will use an improved, research-based approach to building code development to validate performance levels and assessment methods. These will help to resolve market barriers and increase sales of innovative products.