National Research Council Canada-NRC

National Research Council Canada-NRC

July 06, 2012 16:30 ET

Emerging Technologies Thrive in Canada

Government of Canada recognizes SFN Biosystems Inc. as a Canadian Innovation Leader

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - July 6, 2012) - SFN Biosystems Inc. has developed a new method of converting greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas compressors into reusable energy and products. For this, the company was recognized today by the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for Science and Technology, as a Canadian innovation leader.

"Our government's Economic Action Plan 2012 focuses on the drivers of growth and job creation-innovation, investment, education, skills and communities," said Minister of State Goodyear. "Our government is investing in the welfare of our communities by funding research in areas of importance to Canadians - the environment, natural resources and energy."

Through the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP), SFN Biosystems Inc. received financial contributions of $462,303 since 2009 to develop a unique process of capturing rejected heat/exhaust from natural gas burning compressors, and convert it for use in growing algal biomass. Algae are incredibly versatile organisms and the biomass grown from SFN Biosystem's processes can be used in a variety of industrial applications such as animal feed and algal oil extraction. The new technology is expected to help reduce the environmental effects of gas-burning compressors.

"It is with great pleasure today that I present SFN Biosystems with a Canadian Innovation Leader Certificate," added Minister of State Goodyear. "This certificate recognizes small and medium-sized enterprises that have successfully developed and applied innovative technologies linking scientific research to commercialization, jobs and economic growth. It also honours SFN Biosystems as a role model for entrepreneurs in communities across Canada."

"NRC-IRAP's financial support and access to information has been an integral part of our success to date," said John Koch, President and Chief Executive Officer of SFN Biosystems Inc. "We have been able to begin operation of our new aquatic farming facility and move forward to commercialization."

Founded by only three members in 2007, SFN Biosystems Inc. has expanded to 9 employees and engages in clean-technology projects to improve the environment. The company's core competency is an in-depth knowledge of gas plant design, construction and operation. As its technology is commercialized, SFN will expand its market focus into other regions of the world that produce and distribute natural gas and expand its workforce.

Economic Action Plan 2012 provides substantial direct support for business innovation and makes available $500 million for venture capital. Of this support, an additional $110 million is allocated to NRC-IRAP annually to expand the program's reach and services for innovative small and medium-sized enterprises in Canada.

For more information (media only), please visit the Industrial Research Assistance Program website (

Contact Information

  • Media Relations
    National Research Council of Canada

    Michele-Jamali Paquette
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
    Minister of State for Science and Technology