LETHBRIDGE: An initiative based out of the University of
Lethbridge, has made the university Canada's leading institution for studying
and developing applications for fluorine.
The Canadian Centre for Research in Advanced Fluorine Technologies (C-CRAFT),
will act as a hub for researches across Canada and the globe, using state of the
art inorganic fluorine laboratories and equipment.
Doctor Michael Gerken, an associate professor in the U of L's Department of
Chemistry and Biochemistry leads the centre. He went over a few of the
applications for their research, "Fluorine is present in all kinds of compounds,
so it's present in 20-per cent of the pharmaceuticals on the market, it has been
also estimated that 30 to 40-per cent of the agrochemicals contain fluorine, you
probably know of teflon like a fluoropolymer."
Gerken noted that fluoropolymers are used in everyday items like water-proof
jackets. He also pointed out that fluorine can be used in areas such as
plastics, refrigeration, oil production, medical imaging and aluminium
As for C-CRAFT being based out of the University of Lethbridge, Gerken
discussed what sets the U of L apart, "It's one of the leading institutions for
studying fluorine in the country, in Canada we have one of the biggest
concentrations of expertise in fluorine chemistry here, and that's quite
significant for Lethbridge."
C-CRAFT will also help the university attract top students, post doctoral
fellows and faculty members, along with government funding and industry