2023 Winner: Environment / Water / Air Innovation

Winner: Excir (Hiwa Salimi,CTO;  Loghman Moradi, CIO;  Pat Derkacz, Eng Manager, Aaron Logan, COO)

Presenter: Jeffrey Priest, Professor,Schulich School of Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Calgary

Initiative: Critical Minerals Recovered from Waste with Ultra Low Environmental Impact

Founded in 2017 by active co-founders Dr. Hiwa Salimi and Dr. Loghman Moradi. Excir enables the ethical and sustainable extraction and recovery of precious metals from secondary sources. Our pioneering and proprietary technology allows for efficient precious metal extraction from secondary sources, including waste streams such as: electronic waste, spent catalysts, and scrap jewelry. This results in a reduction of environmental impact of over 98% compared to current incumbents. The Excir lixiviant is an extremely mild and eco-friendly solution that can be recycled with negligible environmental impact. The chemistry has the potential to help close the loop on the Circular Economy and Supply Chain all while reducing our global reliance on new material mining. Excir has 23 full-time staff and an annual R&D spend of $3.5m+. It operates out of Calgary and has two facilities totaling 25,000+ sqft. Excir is a proud licensee to The Royal Mint of England for their 3,750 tonne/year E-waste recycling plant, a first of its kind in the world. Excir is a R2v3, ISO14001, and ISO45001 company.

Mr. Moradi has 10 years+ experience in the field of Hydrometallurgy and Applied Chemistry with the focus on designing and applying new sulphur based extractants for solvent extraction of gold and other precious metals. He earned his PhD in Organic Chemistry from Tarbiat Modares University and is one of the three original founders of Excir.

Mr. Salimi is an expert in the hydrometallurgy and organometallic chemistry. He earned his PhD in Organometallic Chemistry and has over 10 years of experience in precious metals extraction and metal-ligand interactions. Hiwa also holds several patents in the field of purification and recovery of precious metals.

Mr. Logan has over 15+ years of experience in industry commercializing new technology, and presently holds 660 patents. He was a co-founder of Evolution Engineering where he served many roles, most recently Vice President Engineering, where he helped grow annual revenues to $30m+. He has completed multiple equity raises, licenced out core technologies in several multi-million-dollar licensing agreements, and successfully divested three companies. Aaron holds degrees from Oxford (Masters in Global Business, with Distinction), Queen’s University (BSc with Honors), and holds the P.Eng designation.

Mr. Derkacz is an innovator with 11+ years of experience commercializing and sustaining numerous new technologies, and presently holds 252 patents. He has managed teams of diverse engineering disciplines at both Excir and his past role at Evolution Engineering. Pat earned his BSc in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Calgary and holds a P.Eng designation with APEGA.