posted on Sept. 27: Communication technology focus of state-of-the-art research centre


[img_inline align=”right” src=””]Collaboration. Convergence.

These are the watchwords of the state-of-the-art Communication Technology Research Centre (CTRC) in the Faculty of Engineering.

Some of the money the University recently received from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) includes $2.2 million for a centre.

The CTRC will focus on three areas: communication systems, photonic devices and networks and optimization, modelling and computer-aided design.

“The centre will complement the research and education in the broad area of communication technology,” says Max Wong, the centre's director and chair holder of the Mitel-NSERC Professorship of Signal Processing, Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering.

“The information age has made communication technology an essential propulsion force in the advancement of our society technologically, economically and socially. It has also imposed upon us a great demand for highly-qualified people in the field,” he said.

“We are trying to fulfil this demand by promoting the convergence of interdisciplinary and collaborative research, as well as by expanding our education and training program in this important area.”

Additional funding for the $5.5 million centre will come as matching funds from the Ontario Innovation Trust and from McMaster and private donations. The monies are being used for equipment procurement and upgrade, network upgrade for laboratories and offices and for the renovation of 12,560 sq. ft. of laboratory space.

Research at the centre will focus on exploring properties of various fundamental communication devices, networks and processing techniques to better design and implement future generations of communications systems. The establishment of the centre will provide a stimulating research and education environment and support for world-class researchers and students.

Projects will not only support Canadian industry and lead to direct or indirect technology transfer, but the research will also benefit McMaster students. Additional students will be admitted into the electrical and computer engineering program; by 2003, there will be 180 graduates instead of the present 120.

The number of graduate students will also increase over the next few years to 150, up from the current 90.

Students will also benefit from the enhanced labs and research facilities, as well as from interaction with a wide range of highly-skilled professors and researchers working at the centre.

Photo: (back row, l to r) Jim Reilly, Alex Gershman, John Bandler, Tim Davidson, (front row, l to r) Peter Smith, Max Wong, Tom Luo