IoT lab – a short History

Today, the ESG UQAM IoT lab. is one of the most advanced IoT research environment in Canada.

Back in time – a wink to the roots of the IoT Lab

The IoT lab. traces its roots back to 2003 with the funding of the first RFID Lab in Canada @ the ePoly research center (école Polytechnique de Montréal). Together, with a group of colleagues, we set up the lab on the model of the Auto-ID Center (now Auto-ID Labs network). At this time, RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification) was considered to be «the next big thing since the slide bread». While the technology went throughout the hype cycle, back in time, building a proof of concept of a connected supply chain was a real challenge. This was done by building RFID portals (equipped with the first gen. of Zebra readers (previously Motorola/symbol), configuring Catamaran middleware and integrating it to SAP ERP .


2004 – first RFID lab. in Canada @ ePoly research center (École Polytechnique de Montréal)

Simulation of a connected supply chain (using RFID portals) Symbol (Motorola/Zebra) readers /ShipCom Wireless Catamaran middleware/ ERP SAP
Automatically updating the inventory in the ERP

In the following years, the researchers contributed to build RFID Academia, a former leading Authority in RFID Technology driven by a team of PhD researchers and professionals in logistics & transportation. The RFID Academia lab. was put in place to adress the rising importance of the technology

2008 –RFID lab @ RFID Academia (in the early years of RFID/IoT technologies)

RFID lab @ RFID Academia (in the early years of RFID/IoT technologies)

IoT Lab @ RFID Academia & ePoly center (2008) – research projects in logistics

In 2010, Dr. Bendavid joigned l’ESG-UQAM where he braught back the expertise from the sector. @ this time, RFID technologies had matured, and their adoption was spreading in all business sectors. RFID was then considered as one technology among others in the IoT portfolio.

In 2013, Dr. Bendavid, professor at the department of “Analytique, opérations et technologies de l’information (AOTI)” put in place the IoT lab. as the “technological arm” of the Smart logistics & transportation laboratory (now the Centre de recherche sur l’intelligence2 en gestion de systèmes complexes CRI2GS), an initiative funded by the Canadian fundation for innovation (CFI).

In early 2018, following a competition for recognition ESG research units, the research Committee officially recognized eight ESG knowledge transfer units – including the IoT Laboratory for its unique expertise in the field. Since then, the lab. has developed collaborations with various technological and industrial partners as well as with other research laboratories.

Today, the ESG UQAM IoT lab. is one of the most advanced IoT research environment in Canada.


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