Advanced Bio-composites for automotive sector

The proposed project seeks to develop biocomposite technology and products for the auto manufacturing industries. Eight graduate students under the supervision of Dr. Mohini Sain, will work on manufacturing processes, mechanical characterization and development of molds for various types of bio-composites which have direct application in auto-industries and can act as substitute for fossil fuel based composites. The two partner organizations will be the Centre for Biocomposites and Biomaterials Processing (CBBP), Faculty of Forestry, Univ.

Aboriginal economic development of forest resources

An increasing number of Aboriginal communities are seeking a fair share of benefits from the economic development of forest lands and resources. Yet participation remains low, and initiatives to increase the participation of Aboriginals in the forest sector have had limited contributions to improving the economic and social well-being of Aboriginal peoples and communities. This situation reflects a general lack of knowledge about what Aboriginal economic development of forest resources really means.

Shrinkage of polymer coatings on wood veneers in aircraft structures: understanding the causes of the problem and possible solution

A common problem in aircraft cabinetry is deterioration of high gloss finishes, giving an "orange-peel look", which is attributed to some kind of dimensional instability. This can be related to the veneer, the varnish, their interactions and how they evolve over time and in different environmental conditions (temperature and humidity) to which the aircraft cabinetry are exposed during their manufacturing and usage. This problem is costly to Bombardier Aerospace, who must frequently rework the cabinetry surfaces. 3M Canada is interested in providing solutions.

Analysis of the potential for carbon offsets in North American tribal lands

The research objectives for this proposed Mitacs project are to identify the forested Tribal Lands in the US that hold the most promise for participating in the developing regional US and Canadian offset markets. The partner organization is Offsetters Clean Technology, a BC based company with expertise in carbon management and advisory services in Canada. This project will ultimately result in the creation of a new line of business for the company focused on First Nations and tribes outside of British Columbia.

Evaluation of appearance, corrosion properties and leach resistance of modified micronized copper preservative treated wood

Recently introduced micronized copper wood preservative system has successfully captured most of the treated wood market in the USA; however, it cannot be acceptable in Canada because the wood surface is mottled and streaky in appearance when it is applied to Canadian wood species (spruce-pine fir). This problem may be solved by partially solubilizing copper with MEA to provide an even color to wood surface.

Assessing Attitudes of Architects and Builders towards Forest Certification in British Columbia

Forest certification is a voluntary market-based instrument to promote sustainable forest management (SFM). Although, large areas of forests have been certified against different certification schemes in British Columbia, there has been a recent slowdown in the uptake of forest certification due to a number of factors, including a lack of awareness. Architects and builders have a key role in creating or translating demand for certified products due to their position in the value chain for forest products as they are could be both buyers and sellers of certified products.

Assessing the Effects of Climate Change on Wildlife Habitat in Boreal Forest Reclamation

Climate change is becoming a factor to be accounted for in forest planning, especially in reclamation activities where the objective is to create a self-sustaining forest ecosystem in areas degraded by human activities, such as open-pit mining activities in northern Alberta Oil Sands. Oil Sands will produce up to 50% of Canadian oil demand in the following years, but when the mining activity ends, large areas of land are deprived of vegetation. Mining companies have the legal requirement to re-establish a functional forest ecosystem suitable for wildlife habitat.

Increasing the economic value of non-commercial wood species through induced fungal pigmentation systems

This research proposes to investigate spalting (natural wood pigmentation by fungi) as a method for creating value-added wood products.  Specifically, this research will focus on the development of creating naturally colored wood for commercial applications, as well as increasing the value of blue stained pine wood inadvertently produced by the mountain pine beetle.  Industry benefits from this research include an increased value to both low and high value lumber produced by the company, and gaining a foothold into the newly developing market for spalted wood – a market in which very few in

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