Assessing Volatile Organic Compounds as a Measure of Crop Health

Plants produce a blend of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) quickly in response to various growing conditions and plant stressors. These compounds are released well before there are any obvious signs of stress, such as wilting or loss of chlorophyll. Blueberry and other crops with thicker leaves, are slow to show obvious signs of stress and therefore are more prone to reduced crop quality and quantity than other field crops.

Innovation and characterization of plant-based ingredients for the emerging protein markets

Research within this project will focus on the innovation and characterization of plant-based ingredients arising from pulses and cereals for the protein ingredient market. The global protein ingredient market was valued at $31.8 billion in 2016 and is expected to rise to $46.4 billion by 2022 with the greatest growth occurring in the plant protein ingredient sector. Consumers are looking towards alternative proteins, other than from animals (e.g., whey/casein from milk; ovalalbumin from eggs) and soy, because of allergen concerns and the rising costs of dairy proteins.

Modelling successional dynamics in the boreal mixedwoods

A thorough understanding of the effects of the natural disturbances on successional dynamics is essential when developing silvicultural approaches. If applied correctly, this understanding should ensure the sustainable management of the wood resources, as well as the conservation of the biological attributes and ecological functions of forest ecosystems. With respect to the spatial and temporal complexity of the successional dynamics of forest ecosystems, simulation models are powerful tools as they are able to address many factors simultaneously.

Assessment and Genetics of Stress Resilience in Dairy Cattle

Dairy cattle are exposed to stressors that negatively impact health, fertility, welfare and production. Health and climate experts predict that exposure to stressors (i.e. pathogens and extreme temperature events) will increase as climate conditions continue to destabilize. Due to increased antimicrobial resistance, there is urgent need to explore alternative strategies to promote animal health; it is anticipated that genetic selection for increased stress resilience will yield healthier animals that will live longer and be more productive.

Landscape-scale reconstruction of the spatio-temporal attributes and biophysical drivers of mixed-severity fire regimes in the Alberta Foothills

Ecosystem-based management (EBM) presumes that sustainability is a function of how well we understand ecosystem function and ecological dynamics. This includes understanding relationships among climate, disturbance, vegetation patterns, and ecological services. Recent research on the historical ecology of montane forests in western Canada has challenged the long-standing notion that stand-replacing fires characterized the landscape. Instead, a mixed-severity regime (MSFR) existed in portions of the montane forest.

Photometry- and Radiometry-based Precision Agriculture

Labor cost and availability are identified as the biggest challenges facing Canadian agriculture. The DOT Technology Corporation, as part of the SeedMaster, is to create an autonomous power system that acts as a primary locomotion unit for carrying a multitude of farm implements used for seeding, fertilizing, and tilling. This simple autonomous power will enable farmers to employ a number of farm functions through a shared, smaller, and economical locomotion base, called DOT.

Optimization of astaxanthin production in large-scale cultivation of microalgae by utilizing industrial CO2 emissions

Haematococcus pluvialis is a green microalga that concentrates the compound astaxanthin, a commercial product with nutraceutical, pharmaceutical, cosmetic, aquaculture, and food applications.

Multi-species sustainable fisheries management using scientific and traditional ecological methods - Year two

I am conducting a multi-species fish population monitoring project in Quebec’s largest lake (Mistassini), to facilitate community-based fisheries management with the Cree Nation of Mistissini. Mistassini is home to recreational fisheries for walleye, lake trout, brook trout and pike. With a 31% increase in the regional human population since 2001 and increasing fishing pressure, effective monitoring of Mistassini’s harvested fish populations is essential.

Mapping associations between drought and simultaneous fires across space and time within the Southern Canadian Cordillera

The sequence of costly wildfires that burned at multiple locations in British Columbia and Alberta during fire seasons in 2003, 2015, 2016 and 2017 remind people that fires play an important part in forests of southwestern Canada. However, people are also increasingly recognizing the role of fire in providing ecological renewal and diversification. As a testament to this growth in understanding, forestry companies are embracing practices which include emulating historical fire regimes that exhibit a wide range of spatial and temporal characteristics such as fire shape and severity.

Development of a reject refining method in the magnesium bisulfite pulping process

Twin Rivers Paper previously installed and ran a reject refining process in order to improve their pulp yield. However, once the process was implemented it decreased the cleanness in the produced pulp which is undesirable for customers therefore the process was shut down. Currently the rejected chips are either being burned or sent to landfill but the issue with this is that there are still good fibers within those rejects that are able to be pulped.

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