Supercritical Fluid Extraction and Chromatography of Softwood Plants Oils

This project will be with ANPI Canada Inc., a Canadian company focused on essential oil extract from softwood in Bolton, Ontario. Presently, ANPI uses various extraction techniques for isolation of essential oils particularly cedar oil from cedar leaves, branches, and mulch. These essential oils have applications in the food, nutraceutical, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical industries. ANPI have found that their current extraction methods do not provide a suitable yield of essential oil as well as high purity of active components of oil.

Ultrasound-assisted Extraction of Cedar Essential Oil

This project will be with All Natural Products Inc. (ANPI), a Canadian company focused on essential oil extract from natural herbal resources in Bolton, Ontario. These essential oils have applications in the food, flavor, nutraceutical, and pharmaceutical industries. ANPI have found that their current extraction methods do not provide a suitable yield of essential oils.

Microplastic pollution in coastal British Columbia: a baseline assessment of contamination in blue mussels

Microplastic pollution is an emerging threat to marine environments. Microplastics (small plastic polymers

Development of high value-added products: from crushed glass to zeolite and active filtration media

In Canada, of the total amount of container glass in the market place (estimated at 850,000 tons per annum), only one-half is collected by recycling programs. The common technical and economic difficulties include the presence of organic and/or inorganic contaminants, which need to be reduced to below 0.05% for glasswork, as well as the issue of mixed color. The cost for making products with relatively low value such as glasswork and road aggregates from recycled glass can be prohibitive, providing no added incentive to improve glass recycling.

Identifying the drivers of polar bear-human interactions

Polar bears are curious, and that curiosity often leads them into conflict with people. Park and wildlife managers across the Arctic need to understand why polar bears approach people and whether they do so because of human activities, a lack of sea ice, or a combination of both of these factors. Currently, this is not known, which makes it hard to plan how to prevent conflicts between polar bears and people; especially with sea ice conditions changing rapidly as a result of a warming Arctic climate.

Morphodynamic model development to better integrate the impact of riparian vegetation on bank erosion

Morphodynamic models are increasingly used in watershed management to predict the evolution of river channels and to test management scenarios prior to their implementation. The impact of plants in riparian zones is particularly critical to better document, but the current models rarely integrate this component. This project will use a bank erosion module and a vegetation module, recently developed during the intern’s PhD research to address some of the weaknesses of existing morphodynamic models, to develop knowledge on the effects of riparian plants on bank erosion.

SmogStop Barrier Field Study

Sound barriers can be seen beside highways across Ontario and are designed to protect residents from the noise produced by traffic. However, these barriers do little in the way of protecting residents from the pollution produced by nearby vehicles. This project combines a novel sound barrier design with a new pollution control technology that will help reduce the level of traffic related pollutants that those living near major roadways will be exposed to.

Evapotranspiration and Bioretention Performance in Stormwater Management

Every time it rains, there is a portion of water that doesn’t get absorbed by plants and soils. That water is known as run-off, and it requires management since it can create high energy flows and pick up harmful chemicals (e.g. fertilizers, pesticides, gasoline, tire wear) off the streets, driveways, and other hard surfaces as it flows towards the natural water bodies. This project is focused on analyzing how much runoff can be absorbed by a plant-soil system called bioretention, and whether specially constructed planting beds can help manage both the volume and the quality of runoff.

Integrating high resolution remote sensing of multi-scale hydrogeomorphology into long-term river management

Large northward-flowing boreal rivers are an important hydroelectric resource, but effects of river regulation on downstream geomorphology and aquatic ecosystems are difficult to predict. Peace River, BC presents an ideal case study of river response to regulation, with continuous monitoring since dam construction in 1967. However, current understanding of system changes is based mainly on periodic ground-based measurements that may be less sensitive to characterize complexity at the scales at which the river responds.

Predicting noise impact on fish communities in the western Canadian Arctic using Passive Acoustic Monitoring

Several fish species produce species-specific sounds that can be identified in the wild using Passive Acoustic Monitoring (PAM) (i.e. dataloggers configured with underwater microphones). Our project will use existing and new PAM recordings to monitor the distribution of several fish species in the western Canadian Arctic, with particular focus on a keystone Arctic species, the Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida). Acoustic signal detection techniques will be implemented to identify different fish species from large acoustic datasets.