Windsor, Ontario – A researcher at the University of Windsor in Ontario will receive $500,000 in funding for hybrid research, and has been appointed Canada Research Chair in Advanced Hybrid Drivetrain Systems for his work on hybrid vehicle technology.

Dr. Narayan Kar, an associate professor in electrical and computer engineering, will receive $100,000 a year in funding for five years. The announcement was made by Gary Goodyear, federal Minister of State for Science and Technology.

“Our government recognizes the important role that research excellence plays in furthering innovation and competitiveness, two main elements in our science and technology strategy,” Goodyear said. “The Canada Research Chairs Program helps universities attract and retain the best researchers in the world, which promotes job creation, enhances the quality of life of Canadians, and strengthens the economy for future generations.”

Kar said that the transportation sector is one of the largest contributors to environmental pollution in Canada, but while hybrid vehicles help reduce fuel consumption and emissions, the problem is that the electric motor range is limited, and the vehicle still relies predominantly on combustion. His team’s research will focus on increasing the capability, energy efficiency and performance of the electric motor, while designing a system to offer drivers the option of relying more heavily on the vehicle’s electric power.

“We’re trying to develop an energy management system to improve the operating efficiency of the vehicle,” Kar said. “We want to encourage the use of as much electrical energy as possible.”

The Canada Research Chair program was launched by the federal government in 2000 to help retain Canada’s most promising scientists. It invests $300 million a year in universities across the country.

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