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Seneca Open Source researcher’s $1-million grant renewed

NSERC Industrial Research Chair for Colleges Chris Tyler to continue research on emerging computing platforms


With funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Seneca Professor Chris Tyler will build on five years as an Industrial Research Chair for Colleges (IRCC) with expanded research into open source software that can run on low-energy, high-performance computers.

“This $1 million five-year grant recognizes Seneca’s expertise and acknowledges the success of the first five years with Chris Tyler as an Industrial Research Chair for Colleges in open source technology for emerging platforms,” says Seneca president David Agnew. “The next phase of this business-focused applied research program will provide an opportunity for additional Seneca faculty and students to work with new industry partners on applications for low-energy computer technology.”

Building on the research into ARM computer systems, Tyler will also now focus on expanding into related areas of super-embedded computing and development practices. ARM computer systems have the potential to reduce datacentre energy, space, and cooling requirements by 90 per cent or more.

“Over the next five years, we will be working with multiple industry partners to leverage low-energy high-performance computing, both in datacenters and in some really innovative products with embedded computers, such as robots and indoor air quality monitors,” said Tyler. “We will also be applying our experience with DevOps technology to assist Ontario companies in increasing their agility and strengthening their competitive position.”

For the second term, Tyler will work with new industry partners, including Alteeve’s Niche! Inc., and Z3 Controls, and build on work initiated during the first term with NexJ Systems Inc. Additional partners will be engaged over the next five years.

The project is expected to involve approximately 240 students in the classroom and more than 35 hired student researchers.

IRCC Grants support Chair programs across the spectrum of natural and social sciences, engineering, humanities and/or health sciences fields. The grants are part of the College and Community Innovation Program which is managed by NSERC in collaboration with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.