Bioprocessing strategies for enhanced production of heme in Escherichia coli

Ardra Inc. has sustainably produced many high-purity chemicals that are used for various flavor, perfume, and cosmetic applications. Combining industrial/business expertise provided by Ardra with academic/research skills provided by Dr. C. Perry Chou’s lab, we are aiming to effectively produce high-value heme compound using engineered E. coli host organism. Major efforts will be dedicated toward engineering of this bacterium by adopting synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and bioprocessing strategies to facilitate large-scale bio-based production of heme.

Methodology development and implementation of a platform for non-destructive evaluation of both butt-fused and electrofused polyethylene pipe joints using ultrasound and deep learning

The infrastructure industry needs a way to non-destructively assess plastic pipe joints. We aim to research, design, and develop methodologies and a prototype device that allow automated inspection of these joints (made with the two most common joining methods) using ultrasound and artificial intelligence (AI). We propose a novel method that uses a two-element ultrasonic transducer (inexpensive but sensitive enough compared to previous methods).

Cost-Effective Computer Simulation for the Offshore and Marine Industry

Computer simulations have been widely used by the offshore and marine industry, but they typically use different software to simulate different components of a single operational scenario. For example, the tool can be used for the analysis of wave loads of a moored structure in ice infested areas, eliminating the need for analyzing wave load, mooring tension, and ice loads, separately.

Granular Jamming-based Mechanism for Robot Fish Actuation

With the advantages of swimming with quiet, compliant, and continuous strokes, soft robot fish have significant potentials to be used in the study of marine life and ocean environment quietly without disturbing marine animals. Our project is to design and build a robot fish that is self-contained and capable of mimicking body kinematics of biological fish in nature. A new actuation mechanism is proposed in this project. It will efficiently transmit the motor power to the continuous oscillation of soft tail to allow the robot fish to maneuver in the water.

Exploration of attitudes, motivations and behavioural patterns of social media users in relation to winter backcountry recreation and its effect on avalanche safety behaviour

Social media has substantially changed the information landscape for winter backcountry recreation (e.g., backcountry skiers and snowboarders, mountain snowmobile riders and snowshoers), which has created both opportunities and challenges for avalanche safety. The Avalanche Research Program at Simon Fraser University and Avalanche Canada are conducting a study to examine how recreationists seek, share and introduce social media related information to their avalanche risk management process.

Making Healthcare More Accessible in Long Term Care Facilities through a Robotic Platform

COVID-19 has introduced significant challenges to healthcare systems and caregivers to provide quality care to older adults and adults with developmental disabilities (DD) living in long-term care facilities (LTCFs). As a result, regular doctor visits are limited, and demand for caregivers is on the rise. Utilizing a Collaborative Service Robot (CSR) technology within a LTCF can improve accessibility to healthcare by providing a medium for the residents to connect to healthcare professionals on demand and simultaneously reduce the risk of transferring infection.

Red Sucker Lake First Nation traditional land use and land guardianship

This research will enable Red Sucker Lake (RSL) First Nation members to monitor RSL territory, lands and waterways and document Indigenous knowledge systems (IKS), including cultural aspects as well as environmental assessment, by video, maps and workshop teachings. In the process, Elders and Knowledge keepers will not only honour their cultural traditions but also train the next generation of leaders and land stewards.

Improved data driven sgRNA design for use in bacteria

CRISPR/Cas9 is a promising tool for genome engineering in bacteria, but it's limited by inconsistent accuracy. Though some studies have been conducted to understand why this inconsistency occurs, many important biological features have not been explored. Moreover, computer based attempts to predict accuracy have suffered from these knowledge gaps. This is due mainly to the fact that the mathematical equations that these predictions are based on, do not take these biological features into account.

Dynamic Modeling of Hydrate Formation and Dissociation in the Presence of Thermodynamic and Kinetic Hydrate Inhibitors

This project supports a joint industry project (JIP) involving operator companies active in offshore Newfoundland and Labrador. The JIP is supported through a contract with Petroleum Research NL (PRNL). The project aims to remove obstacle to cost effective developments from marginal oil fields in Atlantic Canada. This will be through developing strategies and techniques to manage the formation of solid like natural gas hydrate in subsea production systems. The MITACS support will be used to hire a Postdoctoral fellow (PDF) to support the activities envisaged in the main JIP project.