The hub of WESTEST’s operations is its
two-acre station at the heart of the continent in Portage la Prairie Manitoba directly adjacent to the Trans-Canada Highway, which provides convenient and direct access for transporting equipment and vehicles for testing.
The growing demand for WESTEST services has resulted in an ongoing evolution of the station which includes extensive recent renovations to both our offices and testing facilities, and the acquisition of new equipment that has substantially increased the range of services available.
Alternative Fuel and Vehicle Performance Centre
Construction of WESTEST's new Vehicle Performance Centre is the most recent addition and a significant enhancement to our catalogue of services.
Central features are a state-of-the-art chassis dynamometer and a variety of bare-engine test stands supported by a wide range of data-collection capabilities. Collectively these installations will simulate on/off-road vehicle operations in a climate-controlled laboratory environment and will complement our tow dynamometer, which provides in-the-field and on-the-road performance testing, but is affected by climatic conditions.
The new facility also extends WESTEST’s alternative fuel evaluation and research strengths.
The facility can be used to validate design iterations with precise repeatable results. The ability to provide performance and durability testing at early stages in the research and development cycle will speed up commercialization and provide competitive advantages for component and original-equipment manufacturers.
Administration and Fabrication Centre
WESTEST’s administration centre houses our administrative offices, engineering services and design services.
A large part of the building is dedicated to our fabrication facilities, that include a diverse selection of machine-shop tools that allow us to develop custom test fixtures and component prototypes as well as modify equipment under test to improve performance.
Large-equipment Test Lab
WESTEST’s lab is housed in a separate 50 x 100 foot building with a 16 x 70 foot testing area. To facilitate testing of large vehicles and equipment, a 16 x 20 x 4 foot deep test pit has been built into the floor.
The lab provides special lighting that facilitates capturing clear digital photos or video clips for emailing to clients.
The stand-alone building is equipped to ensure confidential projects are isolated and secure during testing.
Cold-weather Test Centre
Portage la Prairie's mid-continental location and climate create ideal conditions for cold-weather testing with typical January and February temperatures commonly dipping into the -20ºs and -30ºs (º C). Testing related to wind chill and snow conditions can also be accommodated.
Stationary equipment tests can be set up outside at WESTEST's Portage station. Mobile tests can be conducted on the wide variety of highways and urban and rural streets and roads in proximity to the station.
To see a climate profile for Portage, visit these Environment Canada links…
Or click here to download a climate summary (136 kb) prepared by WESTEST using Environment Canada data.
WESTEST maintains a satellite office located at the SMARTPARK Research and Technology park on the campus of the University of Manitoba. The park facilitates university-industry research collaborations and innovation, creates high-tech clusters that potentially attract similar companies to the region, and nurtures an environment and culture that assists in retaining highly skilled students and researchers in the region.
WESTEST’s SMARTPARK office offers a convenient location to work in partnership with our extensive list of local, national and international clients.