Research News

Government of Canada Officially Opens State-of-the-Art Ocean Research Facility

The Government of Canada supports stronger and more collaborative federal science to ensure scientists and researchers have access to the world-class facilities and tools they need to achieve scientific excellence and innovation.

Darren Fisher, Member of Parliament for Dartmouth Cole Harbor, on behalf of the Honorable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, joined by Assistant Deputy Minister for Defense Research and Development Canada, Dr. Jaspinder Komal, officially opened the Facility for Intelligent Marine Systems (FIMS). Renovations to the building that houses FIMS took place over four years, with a total project investment of almost $25 million.

Located on the campus of the Bedford Institute of Oceanography (BIO), Canada’s largest ocean research facility, FIMS is a collaboration between Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), the Department of National Defense (DND), and Natural Resources Canada (NRCan). Scientists and researchers from DFO, DND, and NRCan working out of FIMS are pursuing ocean research using state-of-the-art uncrewed surface and underwater data collection platforms.

FIMS is co-located with the DFO Fish Lab in a fully renovated building that is on track to achieve Green Globes Building Certification. Green Globes evaluates the environmental sustainability, health and wellness, and resilience of commercial buildings and portfolios. During the renovation, a 100-kilowatt solar panel system was installed on the roof of the building, which is tied into the larger solar grid for the BIO Campus. The building is also now being heated and cooled with new air handling systems and the campus’ seawater heat pump system. It is estimated that the renovations have reduced greenhouse gas emissions for the building by an estimated 75 percent.

The Honorable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, commented: “Fisheries and Oceans Canada is a world leader in ocean science. With the official opening of the Facility for Intelligent Marine Systems, we are expanding our ocean research capacity through state-of-the-art equipment. This will also allow for greater collaboration between our scientists and researchers, along with those from Natural Resources Canada and the Department of National Defense.”

“Outstanding work in ocean science takes place at the Bedford Institute for Oceanography in Dartmouth, and the Facility for Intelligent Marine Systems is a testament to that incredible work. We’re investing in cutting-edge technology and equipment to empower and enable Fisheries and Oceans Canada scientists to explore new parts of the ocean and further scientific discoveries,” adds Darren Fisher, Member of Parliament for Dartmouth-Cole Harbor.

Quick Facts

  • The Facility for Intelligent Marine Systems can accommodate 45 to 50 researchers and employees from DFO, NRCan, and DND’s science and technology organization, Defence Research and Development Canada.
  • FIMS is the first collaborative science facility of its kind on Canada’s East Coast.

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