Fabrication of 3D Printed Lignin/Polymer Nanocomposites with Enhanced Mechanical Properties

The generation of a huge amount of plastic waste creates serious social and environmental concerns. As such, there has been a movement to develop fully biodegradable compostable biocomposites in recent years. To join this initiative, Nanomaterials and Polymer Nanocomposites Laboratory (NPNL) at UBCO, in collaboration with Advanced BioCarbon 3D (ABC3D) seeks to develop fully biodegradable polymer biocomposites filaments with appropriate physical properties for 3D printing.

Digital Twin for Proactive Maintenance of Data Centre

The data centre management is paramount to ensure the uptime operation. This research aims to develop a digital twin platform using the industrial Internet of Things, edge and cloud computing, and artificial intelligence for predictive maintenance of data centre. The facilitate maintenance scheduling and data centre energy consumption could be further optimized through the digital twin platform, which enables the prediction with a virtual representation of the physical asset or a process. The interns will have the chance to work with industry partner in a multi-disciplinary team.

Synthesis and modeling of stimuli-responsive polymers for fracturing fluids use

Currently, the global warming alerts, oil prices fluctuations and clean energy have paved the way of investing in the producing wells by enhancing the recovery of hydrocarbons compared to exploration wells. Applying hydraulic fracturing from injected fluids is most common method used. These fluids create cracks in the bedrock and push the hydrocarbons to the surface. The well usually have harsh conditions of high temperatures up to 200 °C and a variant pH between 3-11 which cause challenges to the injected fluids.

Production of Flow-Through Z-Pinches Using Advanced Methods

This project will develop a low cost prototype fusion reactor to create energy from water. We will find a better way to add the power to run it and to increase the efficiency of operation over previous versions of the machine. The interns will increase Fuse’s knowledge of the workings of the reactor and the devices that help run it and monitor it. Fuse will then be able to build a new and improved reactor that will achieve a long sought after goal of the scientific community of getting as much energy out of a fusion reactor as is put into it.

Microstructure Engineering of Aluminum Extrusions for the Automotive Sector

The use of aluminum alloys in automotive applications is increasing since the weight of the vehicle can be decreased. This is beneficial for both internal combustion and battery powered vehicles, to increase fuel economy and increase vehicle range, respectively. However, in general, aluminum alloys are more difficult to form and their performance during a vehicle crash may be challenging. Thus, it is necessary to understand the linkages between the production of the components and their performance. In many cases, components can be made by extrusion followed by heat treatment.

Hybrid Energy Harvesting Yarns Based on Piezo-Photoelectric Nanofibers for Wearable Electronics

The rapid development of wearable electronics and smart textiles demands a more flexible energy supply. Compared with charging from a rigid and bulky battery/capacitor, harvesting the energy from the environment and converting the energy to electricity is a more sustainable and user-friendly approach. A yarn-shaped energy harvester, which is able to convert solar and mechanical energy into electricity simultaneously, will be fabricated. The dual harvesting capability can also compensate the energy shortage when the device is not illuminated by sun.

A Social Welfare Maximization Matching Framework for Supplemental Nurse Staffing

The adequacy of hospital nurse staffing in Canada is essential for the delivery of quality health care to Canadians. In light of permanent nursing staff shortage in most of Canadian hospitals, using of supplemental nurses to bolster permanent nursing staff is widespread. Having suitably qualified staff on duty at the right time is a large determinant of service organization efficiency in providing continuity of care. On the other hand, attractive schedules are an important factor leading to successful recruiting and retaining valuable nursing personnel.

In vitro evaluation and understanding of fabrics interaction with skin cells and dominant skin microbiome: a concurrent material degradation and health implication

Textile industry has been revolutionized over the years with inventions and creative innovations on fabrics to improve performance, comfort and durability. Developing such high performance and durable textiles without compromising human safety is a major challenge. This project will investigate the interactions between fabric systems with human skin and major skin colonizing bacteria. In addition, durability of these fabrics when exposed to skin bacteria under moist conditions be investigated through this project. Three interns will look into these aspects in collaboration with lululemon inc.

Assessing Regenerative Energy Technologies for Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicle (EV) is the future of sustainable transportation to phase out the reliance on petroleum fuels. Despite the multibillion-dollar market potential, wide deployment of EV is challenging due to limited energy storage. Regenerative energy generation can be implemented to compensate for the energy consumption in EV to provide the much-needed extra mileage. Apart from regenerative braking, other energy harvesting options such as solar panels, wind turbines, and vibration/shock energy harvesting have yet to be implemented at larger
scales.

Techno-economic assessment of operating grid-scale super-capacitor energy storage for a wind power producer

Battery and energy storage units are one of the main sources of backup power in modern power systems to support the renewable power generation deficiencies in meeting the load demand. In recent years, the advancements in the charge/discharge efficiency, low cost, and long life of super-capacitor energy storage (SCES) technology have challenged conventional battery technologies. Besides, due to their high-power delivery capability, the SCES units are a strong candidate for supporting uncertain wind power production in a wind power generation complex. Atlas power generation Inc.

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