Issue 1 2017

LATINAMERICANEWS / Issue 1 2017 5 NEWS , The NanoLab is part of a $4M investment within the recently upgraded IBM Re- search-Brazil lab in Rio de Ja- neiro and will focus on projects related to research in Oil & Gas, Agriculture and Health across Latin America. Through its NanoLab, IBM is the first company within Brazil’s IT industry to work on building nanoscience-based technology prototypes meant to leverage the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud and big data capabilities. These simu- lation systems and the process of all data collection and treatment will be powered by IBM Cloud. The lab will enable physicists, en- gineers and computer scientists to jointly conduct industrial na- noscience and nanotechnology development in Brazil and across IBM Research’s global network of 12 labs. The NanoLab will also collaborate with the local eco- system, such as universities and government institutions and has already signed a partnership with UFMG (Federal University from Minas Gerais). The new research lab houses equipment for the characterisa- tion and testing of integrated lab- on-a-chip devices with a focus on advanced materials, such as the manipulation and testing of nan- oparticles. This includes high-pre- cision atomic force and optical mi- croscopes, 3D printers, hardware and software testing tools, among others. “The NanoLab is a unique re- search environment that provides instrumentation for the charac- terisation and manipulation of nanoscale devices and materials, enabling the development of new methods and applications for in- dustrial-scale IT technology. We want the NanoLab to be a hub for industrial science and technology in Brazil that attracts top research talent from around the world,” said Mathias Steiner, manager and research staff member, In- dustrial Technology & Science at IBM Research Brazil. New discovery could re- duce oil losses during ex- traction Steiner and his NanoLab team’s paper: “Adsorption energy as a The actual move, which took place on Saturday, April 22nd, signifies the growth in offerings and the ability to en- hance Mérieux NutriSciences’ mi- crobiological testing capabilities in the Vancouver area, including the upper northwest region of the United States. “The new Burnaby lab will give us the ability to enhance our an- alytical testing, especially for mi- cro. We will be able to offer even more capabilities now, including tests such as E. coli 0.157 and will have the space to introduce additional rapid methods for de- tecting Salmonella and Listeria in raw and processed products. The lab’s new layout will also be able to support a more efficient sample flow and provide room to expand our chemistry capabilities,” states Mérieux NutriSciences President for North America, Jim Miller. With a continued focus on pro- tecting consumer health, Mérieux NutriSciences takes pride in be- ing an industry leader in food safety and quality. “To understand our customers’ needs is to under- stand where the industry is head- ed,” says Miller. “The feedback we were getting from our custom- ers had a lot of influence on our decision for this move.” The new lab in Burnaby is one of four Mérieux NutriSciences labs in Canada and one of twenty-one labs in all North America. The Burnaby location presently caters to the dietary supplements, meat and poultry, fish and seafood, fruit and vegetables and processed foods industries. However, with the new space, the company ex- pects to be able to expand their current capabilities to reach a wider array of customers by late fall. Mérieux NutriSciences’ officials visited the lab for a ribbon cut- ting ceremony on Monday, May 8th and hope to celebrate with an open house, inviting customers to tour the lab, in early September. Visit www.merieuxnutrisciences. com/us for more information. metric for wettability at the nano- scale “published in Nature Sci- entific Reports explains how the properties of liquid oil molecules behave in completely different and unexpected ways when in contact with a solid material, at the nanoscale. The study also revealed that the simulation tools and techniques commonly em- ployed by the oil industry do not consider the increased energy required to extract these oil mol- ecules. Thus, 60% or more of a well’s oil is left behind in the nanoscale capillaries of shale reservoirs. In response, the NanoLab team is developing nanoscience-en- hanced oil flow simulations that could better-predict oil extraction from a reservoir. According to Steiner, while the simulation does not suggest how to extract the totality of trapped oil, it offers different techniques and materials that might help to extract about 1% more. In Brazil, which pumps 2.4 million barrels of oil every day, that 1% increase in production would add 24,000 more barrels to the daily total – and 8.8 million more barrels every year (in Brazil). “Our wettability discovery is an important step to help oil and gas companies to recover more than the industry average of 40% of the oil trapped in their reservoirs,” Steiner said. Next steps The next step is to study the flow of oil in nano-capillaries. To that end, IBM Research –Brazil’s NanoLab scientists developed an integrated chip platform that enables a way to experimental- ly validate and calibrate nanos- cale flow for building better flow simulations that can determine how much pressure is necessary to pump water, as well as cus- tomised chemicals specifically designed to separate oil from a rock’s nanoscale pore network – and eventually extract the oil (for which they already have a patent: Method and integrated device for analyzing liquid flow and liq- uid-solid interface interaction). IBM Research –Brazil was found- ed six years ago, with laboratories in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. For more information about IBM Research, visit research. Mérieux NutriSciences Relocates Canadian Food Testing Laboratory Mérieux NutriSciences, a leading international network of accredited food testing laboratories, announced onMay 11th that it has moved one of its four Canadian food testing labs to a new, 24,000 square foot facility, just miles from its former location in Burnaby, British Columbia.