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Type Non Profit Technology and Innovation Centre
Industry Mining Technology
Founded 1995
Founder(s) Darryl Lake
Headquarters 1545 Maley Drive, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
Services Mine Training, Occupational Health and Safety Consultations, Mining Technology Development, Commercialization

NORCAT - Northern Centre for Advanced Technology Inc. is a not for profit technology and innovation centre located in Greater Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. NORCAT provides health and safety training for the mining industry, occupational health and safety services,and product development assistance to small, medium and large industrial enterprises.[1][2]


NORCAT was created by Cambrian College dean Darryl Lake as part of a job-retention strategy to help employ local graduates and keep them in the Sudbury area. Lake was inspired by the innovation centers in Finland and with former Cambrian College president Glenn Crombie, adapted a model to apply to Northern Ontario.[3]

NORCAT was incorporated on March 28, 1995, operating in Cambrian College with a training centre in downtown Sudbury. On October 23, 1998, the Honourable Chris Hodgson, Minister of Northern Development and Mines and Chair of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation Corporation opened NORCAT's 32,000-square-foot facility, located on the Cambrian College campus. With laboratory and shop space leased at full capacity to local mine technology companies, NORCAT’s Innovation and Commercialization Centre was conceived. With donations from local mining companies and funding from the federal and provincial government, the new Innovation and Commercialization Centre opened in 2009 on the grounds of Cambrian College. Since its opening, 2 expansions have been added to the building to meet the demand for shop space.[4][5][6][7]


NORCAT offers a number of services to support the different objectives of the centre. To support the technology development, occupational health and safety services and specialized mine training programs provide financial solvency for the centre.[8]

Specialized mine training[edit]

The centre provides health and safety training programs to mining companies, contractors and other organizations, including Common Core training, Contractor Orientation and Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System training. These programs are delivered at the centre, at their Underground Mine Centre and online with the eLearning program.[9]

Underground mine centre[edit]

NORCAT provides access to one of the few training mines in North America. The Underground Centre was opened in November 1997, in the Falconbridge (Xstrata Nickel) owned Fecunis Adit mine. The mine provides practical mine training, testing space for mine technology prototypes, and an underground setting for photographing and filming mine technology in a controlled underground setting.[6][10]

Occupational health and safety services[edit]

NORCAT’s Health and Safety Resource Centre offers consulting services and training programs. The centre provides expertise in issues ranging from toxicology, confined space awareness, handling dangerous goods and personal protection equipment. NORCAT also provides monitoring for airborne chemical hazards, indoor environmental quality assessment and monitoring of molds and bioaerosols for schools, offices and homes.[11]

Innovation and commercialization[edit]

NORCAT assists small and medium enterprises with their development by providing access to laboratories, office space and specific expertise. This allows SMEs to build and develop their products without extensive overhead and operational constraints. The centre is a member of the Ontario Network of Excellence, a collaboration of organizations designed to help commercialize products and services with educational programs, advisory services, and financing.[3][4]


  1. ^ "NORCAT Official Website". Sudbury: NORCAT. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  2. ^ "City Services - Earth Care - NORCAT". Sudbury: Greater City of Sudbury. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "NORCAT CEO focuses on innovation". Sudbury: Northern Ontario Business. June 2011. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  4. ^ a b "Technology centre spreads its wings". Sudbury: The Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  5. ^ "NORCAT set to expand". Sudbury: The Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "Cambrian College - History and Background". Sudbury: Cambrian College. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  7. ^ "Province Invests In Innovative New Centres At Cambrian And Norcat". Sudbury: Ministry of Northern Development and Mines. 27 August 2007. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  8. ^ "Darryl Lake: Mining industry champion". Sudbury: The Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  9. ^ "Sudbury's NORCAT is a leader in online training". Sudbury: Northern Ontario Business. 1 November 2011. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  10. ^ "NORCAT mine ideal for training, product testing". Sudbury: Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal. 1 September 2004. Retrieved 10 July 2012. 
  11. ^ "NORCAT plays role in occupational health, safety". Sudbury: Sudbury Star. November 2008. Retrieved 10 July 2012.