Here’s the latest on a wide range of innovation in the Edmonton region. Feel free to share it and let us know how we can improve the Blast. As we break for the holiday season, keep an eye out for the next edition of the Innovation Blast on the week of January 3rd, 2022. Let’s begin!

Alberta-invented carbon-capturing material could help reduce emissions and costs

A CO2-capturing microporous material that attracts gas molecules and sees them stick to its surface could help Alberta’s energy industry reduce emissions and costs.

The material, called Calgary framework-20 (CALF-20), could be used at industrial-scale thanks to the work of a research team from the University of Alberta.

CALF-20 is now undergoing industrial-scale testing by B.C.-based industry partner Svante in a cement plant. (Photo courtesy Svante)

“In Alberta we sequester close to two to three million tonnes of CO2 every year and we have become a world leader in this technology because we have some of the biggest demonstration facilities in the entire world,” said U of A engineering researcher Arvind Rajendran.

“The big advantage in CALF-20 is that it works under practical conditions for thousands of hours, where almost all other previous developments did not.”

The innovations that have made this commercialization possible come as the Edmonton Region Hydrogen HUB is ramping up to upgrade natural gas into hydrogen for use as a low-carbon fuel.

Funding & Support for Entrepreneurship


CleanTech & Climate Emergency

Digital Inclusion & Education

  • The federal government will match the Government of Alberta’s $150 million commitment to improve access to high-speed internet in rural, remote, and Indigenous communities throughout the province.

Food Security & AgTech

Public Health

  • People in Edmonton with opioid use disorder can now connect to the Virtual Opioid Dependency Program (VOPD) through local fire stations to find appropriate medical treatments. Emergency response representatives were also involved in the development of the Digital Overdose Response System (DORS), a mobile app designed to help protect Albertans from a fatal overdose, accessible through VOPD.
  • The University of Alberta has partnered with the Ontario Health Research Institute and the Biotherapeutics Manufacturing Centre in Ottawa on automating the “fill and finish process” at the end of manufacturing a vaccine or other liquid drug, a stage that is often contracted out to companies in the United States or Europe.
  • An agreement between the University of Alberta and Tribal Chiefs Ventures Inc. will see more Indigenous doctors trained. The goal of this effort is to improve health care in Indigenous communities in northern Alberta.

Bits & Pieces

  • Mayor Amarjeet Sohi and the last municipal election drew the most attention to Edmonton on Twitter this year. According to data released by the social media company, Edmonton was mentioned the most on Oct. 19, the day after Sohi was elected mayor.
  • Bitcoin Well has appointed Allen D. Stephen as its new chief financial officer.
  • JudyLynn Archer, Frances Harley, John Mah, Holger Petersen, and Cyril Kay are the Edmontonians honoured with the Alberta Order of Excellence for their contributions to the community.
  • Jasen Kerr is fixing old video game consoles and giving them out to families in need in the Edmonton-area during the holiday season. He accepts donations of old consoles, controllers, computers, etc. — this year, he performed the labour of love on around 30 items.
  • Project Joy, which helps seniors’ access to technology, is running its second annual device drive at London Drugs from Dec. 14 to Jan. 3. Albertans are asked to drop off used tablets or smartphones at any store location.


The Blast is curated by Taproot Publishing and published by Innovate Edmonton.