Federal Science Minister Kirsty Duncan, shaking hands with David Sawires. Bradley Conrad, Melina Jefferson and Darcy Corbin are standing behind them.

Grad Students have a “Flare” for Research

This article originally appeared on the Graduate Studies site. Read the full version here.

Many Carleton graduate students are working on the FlareNet project, which aims to provide a quantitative understanding of flare-generated pollutant emissions (i.e. “flaring”) which are critical to enabling science-based regulations.

Conrad, a PhD student in Mechanical Engineering, who was involved in executing field measurements of black carbon (BC) emissions from gas flaring in Ecuador and Mexico, calls the sheer magnitude of gas flaring across the global oil and gas industry “startling”. The end-goal of his research is to better characterize gas flaring as a source of BC emissions, enabling the development of accurate emission factors that relate BC emissions with flared volumes and various measurable flare metrics.

Professor Matthew Johnson, from the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Carleton University, is leading FlareNet and received major funding to support the project.

Johnson received $5.5 million from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

The project will also look to provide accurate pollutant inventories, understandings of climate forcing and health implications, and engineered mitigation strategies to minimize environmental impacts in the energy sector.