../Morning Post
Posted February11, 2011

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Innovation Awards

Carleton Excels in OCRI Nominations

Ottawa – A professor, alumnus and an undergraduate student from Carleton University have made the finalists list for the 2011 Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation Awards.

The awards gala, which will be held on Thursday April 7 at the Hilton Lac-Leamy, is the premier awards event for the region’s business, research and academic community, recognizing the achievements of some of the most successful organizations and individuals in Ottawa.

Dr. Michel Nakhla, a chancellor’s professor with the Department of Electronics, is one of three people nominated in the research category. His research focuses on the development of parallel computer-based design automation tools for high-speed electronic systems such as medical devices, computers and communications networks.

As he points out, more complex circuits are needed in electronic systems but the ability to develop them is limited by the availability of design tools. Nakhla says that his research suggests that two weeks of computing could be reduced to a few minutes, allowing engineers to quickly and efficiently design electronics. Nakhla pioneered the concept of harmonic balance, the backbone of current radio frequency and microwave circuit simulators. He has received many awards for his work.

Dr. Pouria Ghods, a Carleton alumnus, is one of three nominees in the student entrepreneur category. He received his PhD under the supervision of professor O. Burkan Isgor in 2010. His company, Giatec Scientific Inc., develops scientific sensors to detect deterioration, such as steel corrosion, in reinforced concrete used in bridges and other infrastructure. Giatec also provides general and advanced knowledge-based engineering services for assessing and mitigating durability problems in existing and new infrastructure.

Paulina Masson is a fourth year computer science student, with a minor in business. She is also a social media consultant and an entrepreneur. Her co-op experience includes internships at Electronic Arts Games and IBM Extreme Blue. Through business consulting, Masson gained valuable insights on how new products are marketed and best practices for building web presence for new businesses. Her company, Contest Mob, is a community for professional “contesters,” who enter online contests on a daily or weekly basis. Searching for contests and reading the rules is a time-consuming process.

Contest Mob provides a large sweepstakes database, extensive details about each contest and features a contest entries organizer. Masson says: “No more googling, no more reading the rules, no more browser bookmarks to track the contest entries.” This year, she placed third at Queen’s Entrepreneurs’ Competition, was nominated for the Exploriem.org Bootstrap Awards in the category of Best Guerrilla Marketing/Social Marketing and was nominated for the OCRI awards as a student entrepreneur.

This year, 79 nominations were received in 11 categories. Nominations were judged by a committee from the Society of Collaborative Opportunities and Advancement of Professionals.

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