Declassification and valorization of char materials from biofuels production

This research project is focused on char, a carbon compound which is similar to activated carbon found in water filters such as Brita. This char is produced as a by-product of a municipal waste treatment processes. The char currently produced has high levels of naphthalene, the volatile organic compound used as the principal ingredient in mothballs. Naphthalene is slow to break down, and thus we want to limit its leaching into soils and waterways. One method to do this, is to combine it with cement to prevent water from contacting the material.

Optimal Two-Dimensional Energy Management of Grid-Connected Thermal/Electrical Hybrid Energy System

This project is designated to develop a next generation optimal two-dimensional energy management algorithm for a novel grid-connected thermal/electrical hybrid energy system. On-site implementation of the model and algorithm will be phased into a real community at an undisclosed location for performance evaluation.

Assessing soil parameters using reflectance spectroscopy

The goal of the research undertaken as part of this project is to develop a system to measure soil properties in the field based on near infrared light reflectance. Using machine learning, the complex near infrared data can be turned into valuable soil analytical data. By supporting this research, Route 7 Inc. will obtain an innovative portable soil measurement system that will provide data on soil immediately in the field for much cheaper than currently used laboratory analytical testing. Using this system, Route 7 Inc.

Scaling up regional food systems in AB

This project aims to advance local/regional food systems in Alberta, as part of a 5-year SSHRC Partnership titled Food: Locally Embedded, Globally Engaged (FLEdGE). Local food systems generate opportunities to capture economic value (e.g., income and employment) within local communities, and can also result in indirect economic, social and environmental benefits. However, current resources within Alberta are fragmented and insufficient to meet increasing demand.

Evaluation Capacity Network: Aligning Evaluative Thinking and Practice among Early Childhood Stakeholders

This project aims to provide much needed evidence to service providers and program managers working in the field of early childhood development (ECD). Early childhood programs are required to provide evidence of tangible outcomes to validate the impacts of their programs. Organizations, though, do not always have the knowledge, resources, or capacity to support such processes and the intent of gathering such evidence is interpreted differently depending on the individual sector.

Best Practice Models for Compliance to the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) in the Alberta Business Environment

The way banks account for potential losses are changing, and financial institutions are proactively adapting existing methodologies and developing new methodologies to remain compliant with regulation. The key ingredient of the myriad of evaluations of bank’s activities that are required for compliance is risk assessments. The purpose of this research project is to review the best practice risk models and adapt them to the financial profile of the business partner, and to the economic reality in which it operates.

Design and Application of a High Pressure Microwave Drop-In Biofuel Reactor System

The conversion of low value lipids, including tall oil, brown grease, and yellow grease, to hydrocarbons without the use of hydrogen or catalyst has been patented and scaled up by our group (Forge Hydrocarbons). This project seeks to develop an improvement to the existing process by incorporating microwave heating to the reactor configuration. The process is expected to help reduce the acid number and improve the process economics by decreasing the undesirable side reaction leading to coke formation.

Study on Coal and Coke Mineralogy and Development of a Model to Predict Reactivity from Mineralogy of Coking Coals

Properties of metallurgical coke are very important in production of iron using blast furnace. About 90% of the coking coals produced are used for this purpose. Coal rank was historically used to evaluate coal for production of metallurgical coke. Coke reactivity index (CRI) and coke strength after reaction (CSR) with carbon dioxide are now routinely used rank and value coking coals. The properties of the other components present in the ash may be the controlling parameters defining coke properties, which has not been studied well.

Theoretical investigation of Asphaltene/Wax precipitation and deposition from crude oil: Study involving Nucleation kinetics and Bulk/Interfacial properties

The pipeline transport sector is facing the issue of precipitation of unwanted heavy molecular compounds namely asphaltene and wax eventually leading to deposit along the inner walls of the pipeline. This consumes a lot of energy and maintenance cost. The objective of this work is to provide a solution to inhibit the precipitation of these compounds by theoretically investigating the root cause of the problem. The present study focuses on investigation at both molecular scale level involving Nucleation kinetics and macroscopic level by studying bulk/interfacial properties of the system.

Optical liquid fingerprinting for dynamic process monitoring in nanofabrication

Color-based sensing enables sensors to be utilized in more places and by more people, particularly those who do not have access to or required training for sophisticated and expensive sensing technologies. This cost-effective sensing process is based on the change in an indicator’s color in response to the stimulation that is being sensed. This project seeks a novel
application for a color-based sensing method (Optical Liquid Fingerprinting technology), previously developed by the project’s partner organization.