Polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs) running on hydrogen are a preferred choice for on-board electricity generation in automobiles. A major challenge associated with this technology is its high cost due to the use of platinum as electrocatalyst. Implementation of inkjet printing as a fabrication tool has been investigated by the applicant and the academic supervisor to fabricate and test PEFC electrodes that are 5 times thinner and contain 15 times lower platinum than conventional electrodes resulting in an improved catalyst utilization.
Infectious diseases ranging from avian influenza to Ebola virus infection are among the most serious health emergencies in Canada and globally. Current diagnosis methods such as cell culture, ELISA and PCR suffer from inaccuracy, high-cost and lengthy procedures. Therefore, there has been a growing trend to develop new point-of-care diagnostic tools and microfluidic devices are considered as an important enabling technology owing to its advantages in miniaturization, precise fluidic control, low-cost and high-throughput.
Ontario's chicken industry contributes $2.72 billion to Canadian economy, and supports 19,183 full-time equivalent jobs (Ontario Chicken Industry Report, 2013). To date, 2015 has seen 309 individual outbreaks of avian influenza (AI) reported to the World Organization for Animal Health, a 147% increase on outbreaks reported in 2014. In Ontario alone, 29 farms were quarantined in April 2015 due to AI outbreak (CFIA, 2015).
Patients who suffer from severe burns require immediate wound closure to ensure survival and facilitate healing. The current gold standard in surgical practice is the use of split-surface autographs, allographs, or skin substitutes, but limitation range from the lack of layered tissue organization, the potential for immunological rejection, and the need for high quantities of donated tissue.
Targeted cancer therapies have significantly improved the treatment of leukemias, but emergence of treatment resistance and subsequent cancer relapse significantly reduces patient survival. This relapse is primarily caused by the inability of current therapies to eradicate leukemic stem cells. It is currently extremely challenging to study these stem cells, due to its rarity in patient blood samples.
Universal NanoSensor Technologies (UNS-Tech) develops and commercializes microfabricated conductivity detectors. In this MITACS project, UNS-Tech will partner with Prof. Cynthia to explore new detector architectures based on nano-particle and nano-shell films. The results will be analyzed and the findings will be published in scientific journals. The intern participating in this cluster will benefit from this internship by gaining tremendous knowledge of electronics-based detectors.
The splitting of water into its constituents i.e. hydrogen and oxygen using sunlight is one of the key sustainable energy technologies to enable clean, storable and renewable source of energy. Additionally, the more efficient oxidation of such fuels in lower cost fuel cells enable the broader potential use of such solar fuels in many applications. Here we propose to develop high quality group III-nitride nanowire photocatalyst for efficient and stable solar water splitting using advanced growth, structural and optical characterization techniques.
Osteoarthritis is a slow and progressive degenerative joint disorder, and is the most common form of arthritis, causing a significant reduction in the quality of life of afflicted individuals. A common treatment for this disease is to inject corticosteroids, such as triamcinolone acetonide (TA), directly into affected joints, which treats the joint inflammation that causes pain, swelling and reduced mobility. However, the effect of these drugs is short lived due to the rapid clearance of the drug from the joint synovial fluid.
Luxmux sensors will monitor steam quality and water quality for in-situ Thermally Enhanced Heavy Oil Recovery. In Canada, 2 billions of kilograms of steam are produced per year for heavy oil recovery and this amount is expected to double in the next ten years. Each year, heavy oil producers spend $2.3 billions on natural gas to produce this steam. Lack of technology for online monitoring of steam quality and water quality reduces the amount of oil that can be produced and increases the amount of greenhouse gases (GHG) being emitted.
The intern will collaborate with Plasmionique Inc. to design and construct a novel solar material characterization apparatus. Specifically, the experimental apparatus will monitor the quality of solar materials during thin film growth. This will allow thin film growth to be optimized in a ways never before possible as growth conditions can be adapted in real time to optimize the film growth.