COVID-19: Solutions to Reducing Airborne Hazards in Ground Public Transportation

The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and Transport Canada (TC) are seeking retrofit solutions that reduce airborne hazards and improve air quality within the enclosed spaces encountered by bus and rail travelers in order to improve the resilience to airborne infectious diseases. The two primary interests are protecting passengers and drivers. Protecting passengers on long-range transportation where wearing a mask is not practical; and protecting drivers of all ground public transportation environments are of particular interest in this call.

Problem statement

The ground transportation industry has experienced a steep decline in traffic as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Canadians feel less safe travelling in mass transportation environments given the uncertainty surrounding the risk of contracting COVID-19 and future viruses in these spaces. The NRC and TC seeks to challenge the Canadian industry to develop solutions that can be used in existing federal, provincial, and municipal buses and trains to protect onboard occupants by mitigating the airborne viral risks while restoring confidence in transportation.

Solution proposals can only be submitted by a small business that meets all of the following criteria:

  • for profit
  • incorporated in Canada (federally or provincially)
  • 499 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees
  • research and development activities that take place in Canada
  • 50% or more of its annual wages, salaries and fees are currently paid to employees and contractors who spend the majority of their time working in Canada
  • 50% or more of its FTE employees have Canada as their ordinary place of work
  • 50% or more of its senior executives (Vice President and above) have Canada as their principal residence

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