The Barrett Centre for Technology Innovation is slated for completion in early 2019. Rendering of the completed Barrett CTI (first), construction progress as of August 2018 (second).

Humber College’s ground-breaking Barrett Centre for Technology Innovation (Barrett CTI), which is expected to open in early 2019, will pioneer new solutions to technological and innovation challenges in advanced manufacturing and Industry 4.0. The centre, which is located at Humber’s North Campus in Toronto, will allow industry to work with faculty and students to drive adoption of new technologies Canadian companies need to succeed in a rapidly changing economy.

The Barrett CTI will be a hub for developing strategies for industry to work with the postsecondary education system.

Once complete, the five-storey, 93,000 square-foot space will feature a state-of-the-art data centre, cyber-physical factory, automated guided vehicles, prototyping labs, makerspaces, interactive technology zones and digital media studios.

In 2016, Humber received the largest donation in its history from the Barrett Family Foundation, which enabled the college to start work on the Barrett CTI. The federal government also provided funding through its Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund.

“Working with Humber is a natural fit,” said Robert Barrett, president and CEO of Polytainers Inc. and co-founder of The Barrett Family Foundation. “Our organizations have many shared values and we’re both committed to providing students with an education that will lead to meaningful jobs. We look forward to enhancing students’ experience and interaction with technology.”

The college’s vision is resonating with industry who are providing significant resources to support the initiative. As of early October, five-year agreements have been signed with Cimetrix, Cisco Canada, Festo Didactic, SEW-EURODRIVE, DMG MORI Canada Inc., Kuka Canada and Rockwell Automation, to form Humber’s Advanced Manufacturing Skills Consortium. More partnerships are being formed as word gets out.

The Cisco Canada initiative will engage students, faculty and companies in maximizing the opportunities presented by cyber, network communication and collaborative digital technologies.

Cisco will provide more than $4 million of equipment and infrastructure to help build and support Humber’s applied research network.

Festo’s partnership addresses the skills gap between industry needs and educational programming. Students and employees of advanced manufacturing companies will receive hands-on training to learn the Industry 4.0 skills necessary to succeed in an evolving economy. SEW-EURODRIVE will work with Humber to provide leadership in automated guided vehicles, with an agreement designed to provide training and applied research opportunities.

The DMG MORI collaboration will focus initially on industry 4.0 enabled 5 axis CNC technology (vital to automotive and aerospace manufacturing), and broaden to support outreach initiatives related to education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The KUKA Canada partnership focuses on bringing to Humber the latest in industrial robotics technology and working on robotics systems integration applications. Humber will receive two state-of-the-art robots.

Another exciting agreement is with Rockwell Automation. It will address skills gaps in the advanced manufacturing sector and equip students for careers of the future.

Last, but not least, Cimetrix will bring the consortium leadership in additive manufacturing technology.

For more information, please contact: askbarrettcti@humber.ca

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