Nanotech in Quebec

Thanks to NanoQuébec’s activities, since 2001 Quebec has developed world-class expertise in nanotechnology. DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT or the SUMMARY.

  • Quebec has built a world-class research infrastructure, with $400 million worth of leading-edge equipment installed throughout the province. $250 million of that equipment base comprises the Quebec Nanotechnology Infrastructure (QNI), a network of seven infrastructures for micro/nano fabrication, characterization and chemical synthesis.
  • Quebec has developed internationally recognized scientific expertise through the sustained recruitment of new professors. In the last 10 years, the number of professors working in nanotechnology has grown from 64 to 265. Thirty of these professors hold Canada Research Chairs. In addition, 142 qualified technicians handle the day-to-day operations of the leading-edge equipment required for research projects. In the last three years, 1,000 undergraduate students have been trained, along with 185 master’s students and 120 doctoral students. Of these students, 161 are now working in the private sector.
  • Mobilization efforts have resulted in a significant level of industrial participation. Specifically, 1,500 users, including 250 from industry, have used Quebec’s infrastructure for their development projects. In the last three years, the IMCs (the seven central research facilities) have enabled the completion of cooperative and service projects involving 250 companies and valued at $43 million, of which $10 million was contributed by industry. In addition, 62 collaborative projects were financed through five calls for proposals in high-priority fields such as microelectronics, materials, forestry, and occupational health and safety. These projects, of which the majority were conducted in collaboration with industrial users, received $8.5 million in NanoQuébec funding out of total project funding of $24.5 million.

NanoQuébecâs challenges

NanoQuébec’s challenges


Quebec’s strengths in nanotechnology have been built around four priority sectors and 1 generic activity:


This category includes processes (micro nanofabrication, electronic assembly, encapsulation, etc.) and device development [thin films, electromechanical microsystems, etc.).

The creation of the QNI (Quebec Nanotechnology Infrastructure) and the MiQro innovation collaboration centre (C2MI) in Bromont illustrate the world-class know-how and competencies developed in Quebec.

Industrial Materials

This category includes materials synthesis (nanomaterials, thin films, synthesis processes (e.g. plasma), etc.) and materials integration (composites, coatings, sensors, etc.).

The founding of Tekna Advanced Materials and Raymor, as well as the presence of Nanoledge and other major aerospace companies, equips Quebec with the entire value chain required for the creation of new materials.


This category includes green materials (NanoCellulose, recyclable materials, etc.).

The announcement by JV Domtar/FPI of Nanocellulose production capacity (through the company Celluforce) illustrates the world-class capabilities developed in Quebec.


This category includes devices (biosensors, biocompatible materials, etc.) and drug delivery development.


This category includes knowledge or techniques in the health and safety field.

Research done by the IRSST and the publication of the guide to good practices in nanoparticle use are additional demonstrations of Quebec’s leadership.

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Sylvie Dufort Operations Manager

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