More than two years ago, ExcelSense Technologies, in partnership with UBC Okanagan and Canfor, were awarded $273,475 though Innovate BC’s Ignite Program. Since then, they’ve been able to create and commercialize their ToughEye self-sufficient, self-cleaning camera technology for the harsh environments of the mining and forestry industries.
In conversation with Nima Nabavi, CEO of ExcelSense, we discovered how the Ignite funding positively impacted his company in two major ways: it helped to build their credibility and lowered their barriers to commercialization.
“Receiving the Ignite award enhanced our credibility, as Innovate BC is an external organization who carefully reviewed the merit of our research. This is especially helpful to new ventures with a sound foundation that are striving to solidify their reputation,” explains Nabavi. “Secondly, the significant amount of funding we received lowered the barrier between research and development, and commercialization.”
ExcelSense has achieved commercial success with their ToughEyeTM self-cleaning camera technology which enables operators to foresee clogs in critical points of production, reducing downtime by 60%, decreasing maintenance cost, and enhancing worker safety.
In another camera application, the technology provides uninterrupted rear visibility for 320-tonne class mining haul trucks which have required zero maintenance or cleaning since installation. In conditions that range from muddy fall seasons to harsh Canadian winters, this has enabled a level of safety that has never been possible before.
Innovate BC’s Ignite Program provides up to $300,000 to fund innovation projects in the areas of natural resources, applied science and/or engineering. Teams made up of industry and academia come together to solve industry-driven business problems in a 3-year time frame.
Applications for the next round of Ignite funding are open now until August 12, 2019.