Women workers at Dr. Alexander Graham Bell’s laboratory, Beinn Bhreagh, Baddeck, Nova Scotia [MIKAN 3193548]
A laboratory is a place where scientific and technological experiments, as well as measurements, are performed. Different types of equipment and tools may be used in a laboratory depending on the field of study, such as science, engineering or pharmaceutics.
Laboratory worker Isobel Futcher of St. Thomas, Ontario, tests synthetic rubber in the Polymer Rubber Corporation laboratory, Sarnia, Ontario [MIKAN 3196991]
Worker Ruth Osborne fills 20-cc vials with penicillin at the Connaught Laboratory, Toronto, Ontario [MIKAN 3197854]
Early laboratories were small, sometimes even a single room in someone’s house. Dedicated facilities for laboratory research started to appear during the First World War. However, during the Second World War, Canada’s industrial war effort increased dramatically, which contributed to the growth of “big science.” Many laboratory settings became large industrial complexes employing significant numbers of people. Funding for large-scale research projects depended on government investment or consortium partnerships.
Bert Hooper, head of the chemical mixing laboratory, supervises the preparation of various fluids for developing processes at the National Film Board of Canada building, Ville Saint-Laurent, Montréal, Quebec [MIKAN 4301640]
Canada has a variety of laboratory environments that range from small to large. Some are privately funded, while others rely on government funds. There is also a mix of co-operative funding between academic institutions, private organizations and public entities.
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