Teck, BCIT to boost research on copper’s antimicrobial properties

Teck Copper Innovation Hub. (Image courtesy of BCIT | Teck).

A new $1.75-million facility built by Canada’s Teck Resources (TSX: TECK.A and TECK.B) and the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) is expected to help students and researchers investigate and test the use of antimicrobial copper in a range of healthcare devices, including prosthetics and orthotics.

Dubbed the Teck Copper Innovation Hub, the lab is located inside the BCIT Centre for Applied Research and Innovation and it is expected to use additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, to produce healthcare devices composed of copper and composites.

The facility will also advance research projects and education focused on exploring new ways that copper can be used to enhance health and safety in real-life applications.

Leading by example, the mining company and the university have already installed more than one thousand antimicrobial copper patches on high-touch surfaces at the BCIT Burnaby Campus as an extra layer of protection for students, staff, and visitors.

“The Teck Copper Innovation Hub combines the state-of-the-art research capabilities of BCIT Applied Research with the industry expertise of Teck to drive innovation across a growing interdisciplinary field,” Paul McCullough, interim president of BCIT, said in a media statement.

“This partnership amplifies the collaborative strength of our organizations and establishes a new hands-on learning environment that will have a meaningful impact in the healthcare field and beyond.”