Research Team

Faculty members involved in the program span four Universities across Canada:

University of British Columbia

James Olson
Mark Martinez
Bhushan Gopaluni
Boris Stoeber
Yankai Cao
Heather Trajano
Scott Renneckar
Laurel Schafer
Emily Cranston

British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)

Rodger Beatson

University of Victoria 

Peter Wild

McMaster University

André Phillion

Our recent efforts have concentrated on strategic recruitment of the best and brightest students and researchers to add to the research team.  Researchers work on  a specific project in their field with supervising faculty members.


Lab Technician
Pulp and Paper Centre, UBC

Reanna holds a Bachelor of Science in Geology from UBC. As a science co-op student, she worked at several mine sites across Canada, from copper mining in northern BC to iron ore in Labrador. After graduation she worked for 2 years as a Lab Assistant at C.F. Mineral Research, a world-renowned mineral testing facility in Kelowna specializing in diamond research. Reanna was involved in numerous projects ranging from gold to diamonds, pulverizing rocks to operating electron microprobes.

Reanna has transferred her mineral processing skills to the world of pulp testing. As Lab Technician, she collaborates with ERMP staff and researchers on low consistency refining trials and is responsible for all sample testing in the PPC pulp and paper testing lab. She also trains the ERMP Work Learn students and supervises their work.

Ph.D candidate
Mechanical Engineering, UVic

Matthias Aigner completed his B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Leoben in Austria in 2015 and 2016, respectively.

Matthias will collaborate with Reza Harirforoush on ERMP project 2.2 to further develop the bar force sensor for pulp and paper refiners. Matthias will investigate the effect of pulp furnish (i.e. softwood, hardwood) and plate pattern on the shear force along with the direction of the bar. He will also perform further analysis in investigating the effect of plate pattern on bar forces by designing and installing  the refiner force sensor in  different plate patterns ( i.e. BEL=0.99 km/rev). 

MASc student
Mechanical Engineering, UBC

Bryan Bohn is currently pursuing an MASc degree at the University of British Columbia under the co-supervision of Professors Boris Stoeber and Bhushan Gopaluni. His research will focus on reducing energy consumption in mechanical pumping processes through the use of advanced performance monitoring systems.

Bryan received his BSc in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Connecticut in 2010. Bryan’s research will extend preceding efforts to minimize waste energy in pumps and pumping processes. It has been proposed that an inexpensive and adaptable sensor suite could be developed to serve as a comprehensive pump performance monitoring system. This sensor network would generate continuous efficiency monitoring and allow for accurate maintenance scheduling through predictive pump failure analysis. Bryan is currently engaged in literature review of sensor network concepts and signal processing schemes, and is developing an approach to his project in addition to coursework.

Daniela Vargas Figueroa


Daniela holds a B.Eng. degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Concepcion (Chile) and a MASc in Renewable Energies from UBC. Daniela investigated the biochemical mechanisms of microbial enzyme action in the industrial processing of plant biomass and its fermentation into bioproducts. After graduation, she focused in optimizing the production of dissolving wood pulp to improve its chemical reactivity.

 As a member of the ERMP team, Daniela collaborates with Reanna Seifert on low consistency refining trials and in the sample analysis and testing the physical properties of different cellulose microfibres to assess their potential reinforcement when added to cellulose-based foams.

Jordan Mercuur

Lab Research Assistant

Jordan has completed three academic years pursuing a BASc degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of British Columbia (Okanagan Campus). Jordan assists Reanna in testing all pulp and paper samples. Jordan is responsible for data entry and presentation, handsheet testing and sample analysis of researched pulp. Jordan will resume his academic career in mechanical engineering in September of 2020.