Coprocessing of Biomass and Heavy Oils (Bio-Economy and Clean Technologies)

Pyrolysis uses high temperatures, in the absence of oxygen, to crack long and complex molecures into smaller molecules.  It has been successfully and separately applied to both (a) heavy oils, to produce lighter liquid fractions and solid coke byproduct in conventional oil refineries, and to (b) biomass, to convert solid residues into liquid bio-oils.  Pyrolytic cracking generates highly reactive radical fragments, which then recombine into different chemical species.  The proposed research consists in the development of a new technology for the simultaneous co-processing of biomass and hea

Optimizing adjacent technologies for physical and/or functional integration with UV-based technologies

This research project is directed towards the assessment and development of technologies that will complement the UV technologies provided by Trojan Technologies for water/wastewater treatment.  A novel liquid-solid circulating fluidized bed bioreactor (CFBBR) developed at the University of Western Ontario in collaboration with Trojan Technologies has generated a wide interest for commercial application for biological nutrient removal (BNR) from wastewater.  A generic high solids retention time in the CFBBR primarily due to the attached biomass would enhance degradation/removal of the emerg

Dry powder coating of solid pharmaceutical dosages

Solid pharmaceutical dosage forms such as tablets and beads used in capsules are currently coated by liquid coating technology, which incurs high environmental risk and high capital and operation costs. Prof. Zhu's research group has developed an ultratine powder coating technology for the auto industry. Our previous studies have shown that the same technology can also be extended for pharmaceutical solid dosage forms. So far, first success in the new coating technology has been achieved and several coating systems have been developed using acceptable formulations.

Developing an on-line fluidization analysis probe

The main objective of this research is to develop an on-line fluidization analysis probe to be applied on a commercial fluidized bed. This project will focus on a combination of pressure differential and fiber optic reflection probes. Key objectives will be to establish a lab probe with dual fiberoptic and high frequency pressure readings.  Emphasis will be on establishing signal analysis for both fiber optics and pressure and then use the combined probe in a lab environment.

Developing Fluorescent-based Monitoring Strategies to Identify and Reduce Membrane Foulants in Drinking Water Treatment Applications

Membrane processes are increasingly used for the production of drinking water, representing a clean and efficient technology.  The application of membrane processes is limited by the accumulation of fouling components at/near the membrane surface and constitutes membrane fouling.  Therefore, fouling monitoring and control strategies are necessary to ensure sustainable operation of membrane processes.  In collaboration with GE Water and Process Technologies, the proposed research will develop tools for the characterization and minimization of membrane fouling by combining fluorescence spectr


Since the advent of Subway operations, the task of inspecting and repairing track, signals, and related wayside infrastructure has been essential to safely move millions of people every day.  It has also been one of the most hazardous jobs in the railway industry.  Accordingly, Bombardier is considering Roadway Worker Protection to be a priority.  The new technology, called TrackSafe, is a turnkey solution developed by Bombardier in partnership with the McMaster RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) Applications Lab to create improved location awareness to track workers and train operators