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What services does CRN offer to the composites industry? How much does it cost? 

It depends who you are and what you want to do with Composites Research Network (CRN) resources. If you are a Canadian SME, CRN works with the government to provide support to your company. If you are a non-Canadian global company, then there will be an affiliation subscription costed on an affordable sliding scale. We want everyone to benefit from CRN, but we are especially interested in giving our regional industry tools to compete in a global marketplace. Project work is different. Partner companies will cover their own direct in-kind contribution costs. CRN will cover the cost of research and engineering staff, access to equipment laboratories, technicians and integration of outcomes into KPDs. 

What equipment does CRN have and how do I access it?

Equipment will be primarily for research-level work in support of CRN and to provide facilities to support project work. As the suite of facilities is established, companies may negotiate access to equipment on a case-by-case basis. This access will be provided (free or at nominal cost) as a secondary activity to research and project commitments. 

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Does CRN offer a troubleshooting service on composites manufacturing problems? 

The process is still under consideration, but in general terms, CRN will use a combination of direct industry involvement (through its program selection committee), industry outreach (through online survey, e-mail/telephone communications), and strategic planning (through its network of international experts) to prioritize program-level and project-level activities. Direct discussion with CRN engineering staff is a good first step. Contact our  Network Manager, Suzana Topic at suzana@composites.ubc.ca,  to find out more. 

Who controls/guides the projects and programs of CRN? Can I be involved? 

UBC is responsible for the operation, strategic planning and delivery of materials and outcomes to its principle funding agencies and supporters. A small management team deals with day-to-day activities, overseen by a prioritization committee and a management committee that help guide new knowledge creation. Our international committee makes sure that the work of CRN remains globally relevant. In addition, at each node of the network, there is a regional group organized through an academic centre of excellence, comprising industrial and other interested parties. Depending on the scope of your activities, you may be able to contribute on any one of these levels of the Network.  Contact us to discuss your interests.

Does working with CRN jeopardize my IP?  

Our open access resources are not bound by IPs as they contain generic content. You may use KPDs for example, for internal training, learning and process/product improvement as it relates to your needs. If you want to work with us on an improvement, extension or adaptation of a KPD (or create an entirely new KPD) then there is a standard NDA/IP agreement to sign with CRN. This says that your IP will be safe-guarded, but that you will also agree to share the new content (which contains generic information) with CRN and its network participants. CRN can work with you on final customization of your own KPDs when your IP is involved. Since this work is a private undertaking with no sharing of knowledge, it will be charged at standard consulting rates. 

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