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Ontario Centres of Excellence awards prestigious fellowships to innovative research-based companies

October 30, 2013

Recipients of the 2013 Martin Walmsley Fellowship with Ontario's Minister of Research and Innovation, Reza Moridi, at OCE's 2013 Annual General Meeting.

TORONTO, Oct. 29, 2013
– Four Ontario-based innovators will receive $50,000 each this year to help build their companies with game-changing research and technology through prestigious Martin Walmsley Fellowships for Technological Entrepreneurship from Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE). The awards were presented at OCE’s 2013 Annual General Meeting on Oct. 29.

“These researchers are creating and commercializing the ground-breaking technologies that OCE is proud to support and help to advance through the  marketplace,” said OCE President and CEO Dr. Tom Corr. “At the heart of Dr. Walmsley’s original vision for the Ontario Centres of Excellence was the kind of collaboration, innovation and creativity these recipients embody. We congratulate the researchers and companies involved and look forward to their continued success.”

The Martin Walmsley Fellowship facilitates the transition of OCE-funded, university-based research into innovative business ventures. An expert panel selects the recipients, who are judged on criteria including strength of technology, commercial viability and sound business planning. The Fellowship honours the vision of Dr. Martin Walmsley, who was instrumental in bringing the original vision for Ontario Centres of Excellence to fruition in 1987.

“These individuals and companies are shining examples of the vast depth of talented, research-based entrepreneurs we have attracted and cultivated in Ontario,” said Reza Moridi, Minister of Research and Innovation. “Support for individuals like them is essential to ensuring Ontario continues to create and sustain jobs while remaining a world-leader in innovation.”

About the 2013 Martin Walsmsley Fellowship recipients:

Richard Beal - COFOVO Energy ($100,000 over two years)
COFOVO is developing low-cost solar technologies in order to address the poor heat tolerance and efficiency of standard solar panels. The result is the COFOVO concentrator photovoltaic system which employs a highly fault-tolerant design that has allowed the researchers to strip cost out of every component of the system.  The technology is optimised for use in hot, high sunlight regions of the world.

Aliasgar Morbi – GaitTronics ($50,000 for one year)
GaitTronics has developed a unique robotic patient handling device called GaitEnable. GaitEnable reduces the number of staff required to mobilize a patient, prevents patient falls and reduces caregiver injuries.

Christina Mueller* - Insight Nanofluidics ($50,000 for one year)
Insight Nanofluidics Inc. fabricates fluidic cells with ultrathin windows spaced nanometres to micrometres apart for applications in two-dimensional infrared spectroscopy, electron and x-ray diffraction, and electron microscopy. Using Insight’s cells, researchers have made significant discoveries in a number of fields.

Paul Webster- Laser Depth Dynamics (receiving his second of two $50,000 awards)
Laser Depth Dynamics, based in Kingston, has developed the first real-time analysis and control technique for industrial laser drilling and welding depth. Spun out of curiosity-based research at Queen's University, the technology will provide significant improvements in process development, productivity and cost minimization giving a competitive advantage to manufacturers in Ontario, Canada and abroad. 

To view a video of all of this year’s Martin Walmsley Fellowship recipients, please visit

* NB: Christina Mueller declined her fellowship. As a result only two fellowships were awarded in 2013.

About Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Inc. (
Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) drives the commercialization of cutting-edge research across key market sectors to build the economy of tomorrow and secure Ontario’s global competitiveness. In doing this, OCE fosters the training and development of the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs and is a key partner with Ontario’s industry, universities, colleges, research hospitals, investors and government ministries. A champion of leading-edge technologies, best practices and research, OCE invests in sectors such as advanced health, information and communications technology, digital media, advanced materials and manufacturing, agri-food, aerospace, transportation, energy, and the environment including water and mining. OCE is a key partner in delivering Ontario’s Innovation Agenda as a member of the province’s Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE). Funded by the Government of Ontario, the ONE is made up of regional and sector-focused organizations and helps Ontario-based entrepreneurs and industry rapidly grow their company and create jobs. For more information visit


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Stuart Green
Manager, Media Relations
416-861-1092 x 1022