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Cambrian College receives financial boost for new electric vehicle lab

Sudbury’s Cambrian College received a financial boost on Thursday to put towards its Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) lab, which is currently under construction.

BESTECH donated $50,000 for the college to put towards its 5,600-square-foot lab.

BESTECH makes $50K donation to Cambrian College's new battery electric vehicle lab in Sudbury. May 4/23 (Amanda Hicks/CTV Northern Ontario)

The company is a multidisciplinary engineering firm with a focus on the mining industry. It’s been operating for 25 years and has a longstanding partnership with Cambrian College.

Mike Commito, director of applied research and innovation at Cambrian, said the donation will equip the lab with additional tools to offer increased hands-on experience for students.

"The students will work on those projects with those partners to help them get the information they need to make modifications or improvements or just to better understand how those vehicles will operate underground," Commito said.

BESTECH President Patrick Fantine said the partnership was a natural fit and that BEVs are the future of the mining industry.

"When you look at battery electric vehicles we just see it as a replacement of existing vehicles, but it does a lot more than that," Fantine said.

Additionally, the introduction of BEVs in the industry will allow companies to mine deeper with the elimination of diesel particulate and the biggest improvements in the health and safety of mining workers.

"Noise, just the air we breathe in an underground environment is going to be improved with battery electric vehicles," Fantine said.

Cambrian is gearing up to host its second annual Mines to Mobility Conference on May 31 to June 1. Commito said it’s geared toward those in the auto and mining sector and is about working together to seize critical minerals that are in high demand.

"The key difference between this year and last is the conversations," Commito said.

"So that we don’t miss out on this generational opportunity."

Cambrian’s BEV lab is expected to be unveiled sometime this fall. Top Stories

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