Canadian firm awarded funding for smart grid development

The Canadian semiconductor firm Solantro has been awarded a $4 million repayable loan from the Ministry of Research and Innovation - Innovation Demonstration Fund (IDF) – to demonstrate the latest silicon and power electronics solutions
Canadian firm awarded funding for smart grid development

The funding award was announced by the Hon. Bob Chiarelli, Minister of Energy and MPP Ottawa West-Nepean and covers the development of renewable, distributed power and advanced smart power-grid management solutions. Solantro will use the funding to demonstrate the effective integration of these technologies as a support and evolution for Canada’s aging power-grid. This will in turn create a minimum of 20 new high value jobs in Ontario while also helping to address climate change concerns.

“We are giving Ontario companies, like Solantro, the tools they need to compete and win in the global marketplace” said Mr Chiarelli. “Today’s announcement will not only mean new jobs in the Ottawa-area, but it will help secure our place as a world leader in renewable energy manufacturing.”

Solantro is a fabless semiconductor company engaged in the delivery of highly integrated and scalable power management platforms for renewable energy and grid management applications.   The company supplies specialized chipsets and Reference Platforms for providers of distributed renewable power generation, storage and management systems.  By integrating much of the power conversion / energy management functionality into silicon, Solantro aims to bring intelligent and customizable chipsets and Reference Platforms to the Grid-Tied Solar PV, Off-Grid/Micro-Grid, Grid-Tied Storage and Smart-Grid markets.

The funding will enable the company to stage field demonstrations, in cooperation with its partner Celestica, of a suite of products and applications intended to validate implementation cost targets, quality metrics and the energy efficiency of a distributed power generation / storage / management model.

“We are pleased to work with the Ontario Government and Celestica - partners who share our commitment to imagine, innovate and build out a dynamic compelling view of the evolution of the renewable energy marketplace” said Solantro’s Founder and CEO Antoine Paquin. 

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has predicted that global demand for electricity will grow by over 70 percent by 2035, requiring an investment of $6.8 trillion to upgrade and extend the worldwide electricity distribution network. A large part of this will have to come from renewable energy, however there are many challenges associated with managing the dynamics of distributed renewable energy generation, storage and load management to efficiently balance power generation and demand. Solantro has been working to help address these challenges through specially developed control software running on its custom integrated circuits.

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