DAIR Working to reduce the environmental footprint of the aerospace sector

Toronto ON – 14 March: Ontario aerospace companies and their partners are helping to accelerate a green shift in aviation and  aerospace through collaborative projects funded by the Downsview Aerospace Innovation &  Research (DAIR) Green Fund.  

The aerospace industry in Ontario and across Canada is a key component of the shift towards a greener  and more environmentally sustainable future. Green aviation technologies and processes are vital to  long-term success in the effort to reach the global target of net zero-carbon emissions by 2050 – and a  wide range of projects and technologies will be needed as part of a holistic approach. 

A first in Ontario, the DAIR Green Fund provides financial support to help small- and medium-sized  enterprises (SMEs) advance the technology readiness of projects that can help reduce the environmental  footprint of the aerospace sector. Eight projects led by southern Ontario SMEs have been selected as  Green Fund recipients in this initial round. The recipients are: Aeroflux, Brampton Processing, Burloak Technologies, Drone Delivery Canada, HEBE, Horizon Aircraft, OVA and Solid Ultrabatery. 

“The DAIR Green Fund-supported projects will help advance sustainable innovation in the Ontario  aerospace sector,” says Maryse Harvey, Executive Director of DAIR. “Such innovation will strengthen  Canadian global competitiveness, as many nations around the world pursue green transformation  initiatives in aviation and aerospace.” 

“This important effort has enabled the creation of promising research and development partnerships,  paving the way for increased collaboration which is key to our industry’s success,” added  Steven Cargnello, DAIR Green Fund Manager.  

Government of Canada support for the DAIR Green Fund was announced on August 23, 2022. The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) is investing up to $2.6 million through the Aerospace Regional Recovery Initiative (ARRI) to support the Green Fund as well  as DAIR’s Supplier Development Initiative (SDI). Both initiatives are designed to help the Ontario  aerospace ecosystem increase competitiveness and sustainability.  

Today, the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister responsible for FedDev Ontario, along with Ya’ara Saks,  Member of Parliament for York Centre, attended an event at the DAIR hub to celebrate the eight  innovative projects that received Green Fund support.  

The event was held at the Landing Gear Innovation Lab, Centennial College at Downsview Campus  (North York).  

“In order to meet our goal of becoming a net-zero economy, we must ensure that we are providing the  new capabilities and technology for industries to easily make the transition. The DAIR Green Fund  provides support to businesses who are leading the charge in creating sustainable innovations that will  help grow Canada’s aerospace industry. The eight businesses in southern Ontario that we are celebrating  today have created environmentally friendly projects that will keep this industry competitive globally and  create more jobs nationally. Our government is committed to finding new ways to move toward a 

greener economy that works for everyone.” – Hon. Filomena Tassi, Minister Responsible for the Federal  Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario 

DAIR Green Fund Selection Process  

In the fall of 2022, the DAIR Green Fund invited SMEs to propose projects for funding. Applicants had to  be located in southern Ontario to be eligible for the program. 

The focus of the projects included a broad cross-section of technologies and processes that can impact  green aerospace or sustainability. A rigorous process based on industry best practices was used to  manage the project solicitation, evaluation and selection process. A review committee composed of five  (5) members with diverse backgrounds and expertise from across industry, academia and research  centres was formed to assess the projects.  

The members of the review committee were from Innovitech Inc., the National Research Council of  Canada, De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited, the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace  Studies, and Bombardier. Proposed projects were assessed based on weighted criteria including  environmental benefits, economic impact in southern Ontario, collaboration, and project planning and  management. 

About DAIR 

Downsview Aerospace Innovation & Research (DAIR) is a not-for-profit whose mission is to revolutionize  the collaboration environment by catalyzing innovation in aerospace and beyond. DAIR supports its  members by offering access to state-of-the-art equipment and infrastructure to accelerate leading-edge  and sustainable research and technology adoption; creating training solutions for the business and  technology challenges of today and tomorrow; providing a platform for industry, academia, and  government synergies, to foster and advance R&D partnerships; and advocation for the aerospace  industry locally, nationally, and globally. 

About FedDev Ontario 

For 13 years, the Government of Canada, through FedDev Ontario, has worked to advance and diversify the southern Ontario economy through funding opportunities and business services that support innovation, growth and job creation in Canada’s most populous region. The Agency has delivered impressive results, which can be seen in southern Ontario businesses that are creating innovative technologies, improving productivity, growing revenues, creating jobs, and in the economic advancement of communities across the region. Learn more about the impacts the Agency is having in southern Ontario by exploring our pivotal projects, our Southern Ontario Spotlight, and FedDev Ontario’s Twiter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.