Energy & Power Innovation Centre (EPIC)

Photos of students at work, lab, energy equipment and faculty at work.

EPIC Logo

The Energy & Power Innovation Centre (EPIC) provides expertise and facilities to support Canadian companies with their operational challenges with a particular focus in energy and resource management. EPIC also supports utilities and electrical companies with developing new solutions, as well as training in state-of-the-art facilities.

EPIC is also home to the Energy & Power Technology Access Centre (TAC), a national resource for the Canadian manufacturing and agri-food sector. As a TAC, EPIC helps companies who would like to adopt energy technologies that can reduce operation costs throughout the manufacturing process and or de-risk the implementation of new technologies.

The cross-functional research team - which includes EPIC applied research staff, dedicated co-op students and Engineering Technology Faculty members- works collaboratively with the Sensor Systems and Internet of Things (IoT) Lab, the Centre for Climate Change Management, the Additive Manufacturing Innovation Centre (AMIC), and the mHealth & eHealth Development and Innovation Centre (MEDIC).

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Services

Discover our services.

Energy and Resource Challenges

EPIC helps small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) identify energy, and other resources, conservation and efficiency measures. Our focus on cost-effective resource monitoring, as well as data analysis and visualization of integrated systems are aimed to provide value-added solutions to our partners.

Demonstration and Validation

EPIC assists with product development for SMEs who are technology and service developers. EPIC supports proof of concept bench lab setups, scaled-down pilot setups using lab facilities, (including electrical, mechanical, and data-logging equipment).  Testing and validation services can be completed at either Mohawk College or at the partner's facilities. EPIC's Energy and Power Utilities Lab, a decommissioned substation, can be used to test and demonstrate upcoming technologies in Protection and Control (P&C) systems prior to field implementation, including real-time simulation and Hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) capabilities.

Technology Adoption

EPIC supports industrial technology adoption by bringing together Technology and Service Developers and Energy Consumers in order to support the development and integration of solutions that can reduce cost, downtime, emissions, and/or losses. EPIC can test and demonstrate new hardware and software tools in lab or real-life settings prior to field implementation. Eligible industry partners can reduce technology adoption costs by leveraging provincial and federal funding.

Training

EPIC hosts industry-focused workshops based on its areas of expertise in energy and electrical systems, including Protection and Control using the one-of-a-kind Energy and Power Utilities Lab, which hosts a recently developed a scaled-down version of a distribution protection system to support demonstration and advanced training for utility companies.

Labs & Equipment

Discover our innovative facilities. 

Energy and Power Management Lab

Faculty and students working in lab

Located at Mohawk's Fennell Campus, this lab allows EPIC researchers, students, faculty members collaborate with industry partners in an open environment.

The lab is equipped with electrical and metering equipment used as part of industry projects; including, power quality analysis meters, data logging systems, P&C relays and related communication units, as well as a control equipment that can interact with an OPAL-RT real-time simulator.

Energy and Power Utilities Lab

Relays at the Caroline St. Substation

The lab, located in a decommissioned substation in Downtown Hamilton, serves as a testing, demonstration, and training facility serving utilities, electrical equipment manufacturers, and consulting companies. Support from Horizon Utilities (now Alectra), Schneider Electric, Omicron, Siemens, and SEL enabled the acquisition and renovation of the former Horizon Utilities' Caroline Street Transformer Station.

Energy and Power Applications Lab

Equipment Stoney Creek Lab

Located at Mohawk's Marshall School of Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship, Stoney Creek Campus, this lab hosts renewable energy equipment configured to operate in on- and off-grid settings. In addition, the lab has a bay access area where industry partners can easily bring equipment for testing and demonstration.

Available energy systems equipment include Chroma Battery and Solar PV Emulators; Chroma programmable load bank; Schneider bi-directional inverters; and resistive, capacitive, and inductive banks.

NetZero Energy Building

Joyce Centre for Partnership and Innovation

The award-winning Joyce Centre for Partnership and Innovation (JCPI) is a large-scale (8,900 m2) Net Zero building that operates as a living lab. In collaboration with industry partners, EPIC develops technology performance projects that utilize the different building sub-systems in order to better inform building developers about high performance buildings. The lab is equipped with a 28 well geothermal system, 500 kWAC solar PV system, 450 litre solar thermal water system and a 228,000 litre rain water harvesting system. For applied research projects, EPIC has access to the wide range of electrical and thermal data acquisition system through the JCPI's Building

 

Canada Green Building Council Logo

NetZero Energy Building

The Joyce Centre for Partnership and Innovation was selected as a Zero Carbon Building Standard pilot project by the Canada Green Building Council. This white paper explores how the building incorporated sustainable building concepts and technologies to become a living lab for NetZero building.

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iLLUMA-Drive

Burlington-based iLLUMA-Drive developed an innovative low voltage smart control system (CENSE unit) that controls and powers a DC lighting system. They asked the Energy and Power Innovation Centre to conduct the validation and testing of their system.

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XIERA Technologies Inc.

Xiera asked the Energy and Power Innovation Centre to test and validate their intelligent Fuzzy Logic Controller, aimed to compare the advantages of this technology with traditional control systems.

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Gerrie Electric Wholesale Ltd.

Gerrie Electric Wholesale Ltd. is one of the largest vendors of automation equipment in Canada, providing a variety of tested and proven solutions to industry applications. They worked with the Energy and Power Innovation Centre to compare the performance of different energy meters.

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Mariano Arriaga Headshot

Mariano Arriaga, General Manager, Energy and Power Innovation Centre

As General Manager of the Energy and Power Innovation Centre, Mariano’s role is to support the staff, students and industry partners engaged in applied research projects. Mariano brings a Ph.D in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Waterloo, along with a M.Sc. in Renewable Energy from University of Kassel and a MA.Sc in Industrial Systems from University of Regina to the EPIC team. Since joining IDEAWORKS, Mariano has worked with dozens of companies on projects as diverse as a Heat Recovery System Automation and Optimization to Testing and Validation of a Health Monitoring and Predictive Diagnostics System for Electric Motors.  Mariano has also worked with First Nation communities for several years and continues to collaborate in energy projects; the latest project being a partnership with the Independent First Nations Alliance (IFNA) in a Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) funded project.

mariano.arriaga [at] mohawkcollege.ca (subject: EPIC%20Project%20Inquiry%20(Via%20IDEAWORKS%20website)) (Contact Mariano)

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Laith Al-Musawi, Professor, School of Engineering Technology

Laith is a Professor at the Faculty of Engineering Technology at Mohawk College. Laith is actively involved in applied research projects with EPIC in diverse topics ranging from industrial control systems, protection and control and motor testing.

mariano.arriaga [at] mohawkcollege.ca (subject: EPIC%20Project%20Inquiry%20(Via%20IDEAWORKS%20website)) (Contact Laith)

Majlinda Quarri Headshot

Dr. Majlinda Qarri, Professor

Dr. Majlinda Qarri has been teaching at Mohawk College of Applied Arts & Technology as a faculty member for the Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology department since 2010. Before joining Mohawk, she taught in the Department of Naval, Electrical & Computer Engineering at University of Vlora, Albania for 12 years. She has also lectured at Humber College, Sheridan College, George Brown College and McMaster University. Dr. Qarri’s research collaborations with Ideaworks/EPIC focus on power systems protection and control, substation automation, power quality, and power distribution automation. 

mariano.arriaga [at] mohawkcollege.ca (subject: EPIC%20Project%20Inquiry%20(Via%20IDEAWORKS%20website)) (Contact Majlinda)

Patrick McInnis Headshot

Patrick McInnis, Technical Lead

Patrick is the key technical support for electrical related projects specialized on protection & control projects at the Energy and Power Utilities Lab (Caroline Substation). Patrick is a graduate from Mohawk College from the electrical skilled trades and technologist program with hands-on experience in substation automation. As part of EPIC, Patrick works directly with industry partners to create testing, demonstration and validation projects that are relevant for our industry partners, as well as mentoring students. Before joining EPIC, Patrick performed system integration at the Toronto Hydro Copeland Transformer station; gaining industrial expertise in SCADA system commissioning; managing and updating communication network information; and inspecting, testing and correcting control wiring. 

mariano.arriaga [at] mohawkcollege.ca (subject: EPIC%20Project%20Inquiry%20(Via%20IDEAWORKS%20website)) (Contact Patrick)

Thank you to our funding partners

NRC CNRC Logo     Ontario Centres of Excellence     NSERC CRSNG Logo

 

About IDEAWORKS

The Energy and Power Innovation Centre (EPIC) is part of IDEAWORKS, Mohawk’s active hub of applied research and innovation. IDEAWORKS accelerates Canadian and global innovation by supporting industry access to expert researchers, specialized facilities and world-class technologies.

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