Olds College and AGM Wear Ltd. (Alberta Garment) welcomed dozens of government officials, media, industry leaders and partners on the afternoon of January 28 in celebration of the official opening of the world class apparel research and development facility, the Apparel Innovation Centre. Following a short ceremony, guests enjoyed tours of the facility, witnessed product and facility demonstrations with some of North America’s most advanced apparel research and development equipment.
The Apparel Innovation Centre is a crown-jewel that reflects the Olds College dedication to Research, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and celebrates our relationship with industry, government and stakeholders. We welcome the opportunity to help strengthen the Apparel industry, one which will continue to employ Olds College students in the future.
Dr. H. J. (Tom) Thompson, President, Olds College
Government of Canada support of close to $3 million, through Western Economic Diversification Canada, has enabled the College, in collaboration with Alberta Garment, to establish Western Canada’s first open-access apparel research and development facility. The AIC will allow Canadian-based companies and entrepreneurs to have access to a full suite of product testing and development equipment, as well as research services to create advanced textile-based products such as fire and chemical resistant safety gear for the energy, mining and manufacturing industries.
“The Apparel Innovation Centre’s grand opening will help increase innovation, productivity and competitiveness in Canada’s apparel industry. The Government of Canada is proud to support the Centre, as it works with western Canadian apparel companies and entrepreneurs to develop and test new products for the market.”
The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada
AIC facility highlights include one of the only hot liquid and steam protection testing chambers in the world, allowing for the ability to evaluate personal protective equipment (PPE) in a simulated hot fluid or steam hazard exposure situation, and one of the world’s most advanced thermal comfort testing chambers. The chamber is equipped with a Newton thermal manikin system, capable of simulating a variety of physiological conditions that replicates the human thermoregulatory system. The comfort and thermal sensation data produced will allow researchers to further study and evaluate the performance of the apparel.
We applaud the Government of Canada’s vision and commitment to help create the world-class Apparel Innovation Centre. It will become a magnet for innovative thinkers in the apparel industry as it fulfills its mission of helping entrepreneurs create innovative apparel and enhancing the growth of the economy of Western Canada.
Adrian Bussoli, President, Alberta Garment
Federal Government support from Western Economic Diversification Canada in the amount of $2,986,500 has enabled the College, in collaboration with Alberta Garment, to establish Western Canada’s first open-access apparel research and development facility. The Apparel Innovation Centre (AIC) will allow Canadian-based companies and entrepreneurs to have access to a full suite of product testing and development equipment, as well as research services to create advanced textile-based consumer apparel but also protective clothing such as fire and chemical resistant safety gear for the energy, mining and manufacturing industries.
This industry-focused facility complements the Fashion Marketing and Apparel Technology programs offered at the College’s Fashion Institute by providing opportunities for fashion students to obtain necessary education and hands-on experience from market-driven collaboration projects.
Hot Fluid and Steam Testing Chamber
Thermal Comfort Chamber