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MaRS startup Smarter Alloys signs orthodontics development agreement for innovative alloy technology

Less than one year after spinning off from the University of Waterloo and setting up office at the MaRS incubator's downtown Toronto office, Smarter Alloys has signed a development agreement that could change the shape of the orthodontics industry. The technology developed by Smarter Alloys founder, Dr. Ibraheem Khan, allows special alloys to remember multiple "shape memories." The process means such materials may be programmed to perform multiple functions.

The implications of Smarter Alloys technology extend to multiple industries, including printers and hard drives, automobile components and energy conservation. Last November, the company won the CleanTech North Innovator of the Year Award for its technology's potential to harvest wasted heat and reduce fossil fuel consumption.

The deal announced this month, according to a statement by Khan, "is poised to greatly improve the functionality of smart materials used in orthodontic applications.... We’re especially pleased with this agreement because our partner has a proven track record of taking innovation and converting it into improved dental care."

The announcement is the first of four to six development agreements that Smarter Alloys expects to announce this year, to accompany further growth. They recently hired a business development manager with the help of a $50,000 grant from MaRS and expect to double the size of their technical team. They also plan to open a manufacturing facility in 2012.

Writer: Edward Keenan
Sources: Chris Stevenson, Director of Communications, MaRS; Ibraheem Khan, Smarter Alloys
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