The Energy & Emissions Research Lab has several opportunities for ambitious and skilled graduate students and research assistants interested in working in our laboratory in the general fields of emissions quantification, diagnostics, combustion, fluid dynamics, and techno-economic analysis. Ongoing and potential research projects cover a range of applied and fundamental research areas and provide opportunities for exciting work in a very interesting and important field.  Special funding opportunities are available for Canadian students and permanent residents above and beyond any scholarship funding (e.g. NSERC or OGS).

Selected Current Openings (Partial list)

M.A.Sc. and Ph.D. Students: Experimental Measurements and Modelling of Emissions from Gas Flares
Gas flaring is a key global source of black carbon and other pollutant emissions in the energy sector, with more 150 billion m³ of gas being flared annually. Global flaring is also believed to be a dominant source of black carbon deposition on snow and ice in the Arctic, which contributes directly to accelerated warming relative to the rest of the planet with consequent crucial social implications for first Nations peoples in Canada’s north. Despite the obvious environmental and greenhouse gas concerns associated with this practice, we still lack basic, science-based models to quantify emissions necessary to build business cases for mitigation, to create accurate pollutant inventories, and to enable effective regulations.  Prof. Johnson is the lead investigator on the NSERC FlareNet Strategic Network, a multii-institution, multi-stakeholder research initiative designed to provide a quantitative understanding of flare generated pollutant emissions, new quantitative measurement techniques, and vital models to assess pollutant emissions and climate impacts.  The ultimate goal of FlareNet is to help minimize environmental impacts in the energy sector through a spectrum of policy, technology, and regulatory options. The EERL is seeking talented Ph.D. and M.A.Sc. students to tackle a challenging, experimentally-based projects within FlareNet.

M.A.Sc. or Ph.D. Student:  Methane Emissions and Mitigation Approaches

Methane is a key short-lived climate pollutant.  Compared carbon dioxide, the latest science suggests the global warming potential methane is approximately 34 times more potent over a period of 100 years and 96 times more potent over 20 years.  This leads to important opportunities for near-term climate benefits through methane mitigation. This has been recognized internationally in agreements though the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and in Canada through parallel national and provincial efforts to regulate and mitigate methane from the oil and gas sector.  The EERL is working on a number of projects related to methane quantification and mitigation, including work to develop methane measurement diagnostics, to conduct field measurements and analyze large data sets, and to explore the technical and economic challenges of methane mitigation.  There are opportunities for talented graduate students with strong analytical and communication skills to work in this important area.

M.A.Sc. or Ph.D. Student:  Fugitive Emissions Detection
In many types of industrial facilities typical of the energy industry, unmonitored, so-called fugitive gas emissions are a very large, ‘invisible’ pollution contributor. Indeed these types of emissions may be the single largest unmonitored source of industrial greenhouse gas emissions. In a typical gas plant or refinery there are thousands of potential sources, often along miles of piping. We are working on a novel approach to detecting and quantifying these types of emissions using a clever combination of CFD, optical diagnostics, and data analysis. We are seeking a talented Ph.D. student with strong computational and experimental skills to join this exciting project.

Other opportunities:
Several other opportunities exist for talented graduate students.  Because of funding restrictions, preference will be given to Canadian students and permanent residents.  Students with NSERC funding who wish to work on one of my externally funded projects are guaranteed additional financial support above and beyond any additional funds provided by the University.

Graduate Studies Application Forms: