Ocean technology at the National Research Council

Ocean Technology at the NRC

(St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador)

The National Research Council of Canada’s (NRC) St. John’s laboratory is Canada's national centre for ocean technology research & development. NRC is providing developers of ocean energy devices with the performance evaluation tools required to test and refine their concepts. These tools include numerical simulation, physical modelling and field trials. NRC also works with industry to investigate new technologies for renewable energy, and advises government and regulatory bodies on their ocean energy activities.

Types of R&D conducted

NRC has established a research program that provides Canadian industry with the tools needed to develop new concepts in clean and renewable ocean energy. That energy, harnessed from waves, tides and currents, requires innovative technology. Evaluating the performance of that technology has been a focus for the NRC, and new techniques are being established in numerical simulation, physical modelling and field trials. Collaborative efforts have also been undertaken with complementary and overlapping expertise in other parts of the country. NRC is helping to focus Canada’s wealth of ocean engineering knowledge on the needs of ocean energy developers.

Through its St. John’s laboratory, NRC assists developers with technical issues and acts as an advocate for a concerted, national effort to develop the Canadian ocean technology industry. NRC is active in the Ocean Renewable Energy Group, a sector association promoting ocean energy in Canada.


NRC is well equipped to help businesses achieve cohesive, integrated and timely solutions to complex R&D problems for both Canadian and global markets. Each year NRC scientists, engineers and business experts work closely with thousands of firms, helping them bring new technologies to market. Through research collaborations, community innovation, industry support and commercialization opportunities, firms benefit from NRC’s expertise, services, facilities and licensing opportunities while increasing their own innovation potential.

NRC’s leading-edge facilities provide businesses, universities and government partners with access to state-of-the-art equipment as well as results-driven research and training programs. NRC also offers fee-for-service testing equipment to help businesses accelerate their design cycles.

NRC’s Industrial Partnership Facilities, also known as “business incubators,” provide businesses the opportunity to co-locate with the NRC, enabling them to tap into the organization’s multidisciplinary resources, often leading to successful partnerships.

Partners and collaboration opportunities

In 2003, NRC opened its Ocean Technology Enterprise Centre, a facility to assist in the growth and development of new ventures in ocean technology. With a New Entrepreneurs Program and an Ocean Technology Co-Location Program, the centre helps new and established enterprises to develop their concepts and technologies in a supportive environment, with access to NRC facilities and expertise.

Potential collaborators are encouraged to contact us.

Learn more about business opportunities with NRC.

Unique or high-value hardware and/or software

NRC works with Canadian interests in conducting model experiments in its ocean technology facilities. Its Offshore Engineering Basin, 200-m Towing Tank and 90-m Ice Tank can all be used to investigate hydrodynamic issues affecting ocean energy devices. The ocean energy development process typically involves many model-scale experiments, as different issues are investigated and the concepts evolve. Laboratory and open sea experiments help to define capabilities, limitations and needed refinements. NRC is well equipped and highly experienced in conducting model- and full-scale trials to gather device and environmental data.


National Research Council of Canada
St. John’s Laboratory
P.0. Box 12093
St. John’s, Newfoundland
A1B 3T5, Canada

Noel Murphy, Business Development Officer
(709) 772-4939

Page details

Date modified: