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Sustainable Development Technology Canada invests in solar coatings for greenhouses

Transmission could be customized for specific crops’ needs.

February 23, 2023  By Greenhouse Canada

greenhouse glazingPhoto courtesy 3E Nano.

As part of a broader effort to support the further growth of ‘cleantech’ companies across the country, Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) is investing $5 million in 3E Nano, a Toronto-based company that is developing a ‘nano-thin’ energy and solar control coating for a variety of greenhouse glazing materials, including glass, polycarbonate and acrylic.

The same coating would be applicable to buildings and vehicles. 3E’s goal is to improve upon existing commercial products that offer sun control properties, through low-cost, flexible glazing design. By reducing greenhouses’ heating requirements for plant growth in cold climates, the coating would reduce energy consumption, while transmission could be customized for specific crops’ needs.

François-Phillippe Champagne, federal minister of innovation, science and industry, announced the investment—along with 16 others, totalling $68.2 million—on Feb. 17. The goal of this nationwide effort is to help companies develop ‘clean’ technologies with the potential to deliver significant environmental and economic benefits for Canadians.


“Canada’s entrepreneurs have ideas that will help solve some of our planet’s most pressing environmental problems, but they cannot do it alone,” said SDTC president and CEO Leah Lawrence. “With our support and funding at all stages of development, we are helping companies reach commercialization faster.”

In a few related examples, SDTC is investing:

  • $6.5 million in Montreal-based BrainBox AI, which is developing digital controls using artificial intelligence (AI) to optimize energy efficiency for heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems.
  • $6.8 million in Hortau, based in Lévis, Que., which is developing a crop management platform using wireless sensor networks and AI to anticipate crop stress and optimize plant growth.
  • $2.6 million in Calgary-based Provision Analytics, which is enhancing software with analytics and machine learning to monitor food safety and quality data and discover ways to minimize waste across the food supply chain.

“Our government is proud to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with these groundbreaking companies as they drive innovation and make their mark as leaders in clean technology,” Champagne said.

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