On May 8, 2017, the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, officially opened the Big Data Analytics Centre (BDAC) at the Communications Research Centre (CRC).
Using big data analytics, cloud computing, crowdsourced information, data fusion and state-of-the-art visualization, the Centre enables researchers to work with big data in ways that were previously not possible to support sustainable spectrum management. The research at the Centre uses a network of smart sensors to collect vast amounts of real-time data on Canada's wireless spectrum to help the Government understand how it is used and to make better use of this scarce resource.
The Big Data Analytics Centre offers over 250 square metres of space including a collaboration area for government science, an interactive learning area with multimedia kiosks, a demonstration area for interactive demos and displaying research, and an immersive area for research, presentations and live demonstrations.
The first visualization laboratory of its kind within the Government, the Centre is available for use by other government departments and for collaboration with industry and academia. Other science-based departments and agencies are invited to use the Centre for their R&D needs and to apply these cutting-edge capabilities for technology demonstrations, and facilitating collaboration on complex R&D challenges.
"To power their smartphones, tablets, TVs and radios, Canadians rely on the judicious use of wireless spectrum. We can't make more wireless spectrum, but we can make better use of it. To do that, we need to understand exactly how it's being used and where. We need to know, in real time, where there are unused radio waves that could be put to work. Big data is the key to understanding that. It gives us the power to turn data into useful insights that allow us to predict where the surplus capacity will be at any given time. The research being conducted at the Big Data Analytics Centre has the potential to transform not only the telecommunications sector but all sectors of the economy."