Victoriaville EQMBO-Entreprises, one of the three reference centers  managed (CCTT) by Victoriaville College  inaugurated Wednesday afternoon, a brand new research laboratory dedicated to industrial finishing processes with  low impact on environment., a unique concept in North America.  This laboratory will allow to develop new finishing or drying processes, aiming at reducing VOC while maintaining profitability for the wood and furniture industries.

Mr Vincent Guay, director (provisory) of Eqmbo-Entreprises, is very enthousiastic about this project.: « One of our researchers, Mr Roger Ducharme, had one day this crazy idea.  And with the support of many partners from the industry, this project could be realized thanks to the participation of our whole staff at Eqmbo-Entreprises.

This major project was supported financially by the Canadian Foundation for Innovation and by the Quebec government after a deep analysis. «for the Canadian Fondation for Innovation (CFI),  it is very iimportant to help colleges meet the technological challenges that have to face our manufacturers.. This new laboratory will not only help the college in solving manufacturers problems but will also  give the students an opportunity to develop new skills by experimenting the most modern  instruments  », said Gilles G. Patry, CFI president.

When a project is submitted to CFI for approval, it must get the support of industries or research  organizations. Thus, Nathalie Carrier, project manager  and communication responsible for Eqmbo-Entreprises,  expressed  her gratitude to entreprises such as  Akzo Nobel Peintures Bois ltée, Canlak, Société Laurentide, Fournitures funéraires Victoriaville inc. And the National Research Council of Canada who believed in this project from the very beginning.

With more than 1 million dollars worth of equipement, this initiative required equal participation from the federal government  through CFI (40 %) and the Quebec government through the Ministère de l’Économie, de l’Innovation et des exportations (40 %). EQMBO-Entreprises and four of its  partners (Automatech, Kremlin Exel Rexon, Prime Heat and Ayotte-Technogaz) also contributed for the equivalent of 20% of the project.

The researches made in this laboratory  will allow to develop three aspects related to surface finishing :  application processes, drying techniques, and quality control of the finished surfaces. Thanks to equipments such as :  robotized finishing station for application and 3D UV curing, a weathering unit using xenon that will allow to evaluate the quality of a finish over time,  various drying ovens including a microwave unit ,  the laboratory is set to start its first research projects.. The main researcher and responsible of the laboratory offers to industries, whatever their size, alternatives to processes actually used , by involving products  and equipment providers . «The industries face various challenges in their finishing departments.. Eqmbo-Entreprises will be able to test a wide range of technologies before manufacturers start their implementation.  For example, UV coating on tridimensional surfaces, or electrostatic coating on wood will be tested in this new laboratory.

It should be mentioned that this new laboratory will also have an impact on education considering the fact that college and university students  will also use the equipments to conduct research projects related to finishing technologies.

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