We are scientists, engineers and specialists working to develop solutions to water pollution. Irina Garces and Eyup Demir, co-founders of Octo-M Technologies met at the University of Alberta while pursuing their PhDs in mechanical engineering. While Irina specialized in mechatronics, machine design, smart materials, sensor and actuator development with polymers and nanocomposites; Eyup specialized in material characterization, MEMS fabrication and modelling to predict material properties of nanocomposites using analytical tools and data science. We realized our skills complemented each other and there was a synergy when we worked together. While working in the lab, many ideas sparked towards solving challenging problems. We are both passionate about creating sustainable solutions with technology and want to make a difference. We decided to pursue our dream of advancing science and technology for a sustainable future by starting Octo-M Technologies.
Randy is a marine geoscientist with 30+ years experience in applied research and business development, primarily in the fields of ocean mapping and ocean monitoring. He most recently served as the Director of the Centre for Applied Ocean Technology at the Marine Institute of Memorial University. While there is co-founded the Journal of Ocean Technology (www.thejot.net), and led the development of the SmartBay ocean observatory (now part of the Canadian Integrated Ocean Observing System). Prior to joining the Marine Institute, Mr. Gillespie was the vice-president of the Canadian Centre for Marine Communications. Before that, he managed Geomatics Technology Inc., a subsidiary of Provincial Aerospace.
Randy was a member of the Board of the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Newfoundland and Labrador from 2017 through 2020. He also served as President of the Canadian Institute of Geomatics (2003), Chaired the Advisory Committee for the College of the North Atlantic Geomatics Engineering Technology Program (2000 – 2009), and served as director for the Atlantic Coastal Zone Information Steering Committee Association (2005 – 2010).
Randy’s current interests include teaching entrepreneurship, and offering business development advice and mentorship to startups, like Octo-M.
Mitchell is a Mechanical Engineering graduate of the University of Alberta (2014) and the Co-founder & CEO of Prototype Hubs. Since completing his undergraduate program, Mitchell has worked in Oil & Gas, Mechanical Design, and Manufacturing Industries. Mitchell loves to get outdoors and wake surf, downhill mountain bike, and ride his motorcycle in his spare time!
Dr. Matthew Ross received his PhD in analytical and environmental chemistry from the University of Alberta and is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Sciences at MacEwan University. His research focuses on understanding the sources and fate of anthropogenic pollutants in the environment and the development of novel analytical methodologies to support these studies. For the past 6 years, his work has centered on characterizing microplastic pollution in urban and freshwater environments and increasing understanding of microplastics emissions via stormwater runoff–work funded by various granting agencies, including the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). In his freetime, Dr. Ross enjoys swimming, photography, and exploring Alberta’s great outdoors.