NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Urban Drainage

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NSERC Industrial Research Chair (IRC) in Urban Drainage is proposed to assist municipalities and engineering firms in tackling the challenges associated with the increased service demands on aging urban drainage systems and changing regulatory environment. It is funded by two municipalities (Edmonton and Calgary), an industrial partner (Stantec) and NSERC. The research program includes developing/updating sewer design guidelines, improving sediment management in sewer systems, and sewer inspection and monitoring technologies. Accompanied with two NSERC CRD projects with The City of Edmonton and The City of Calgary (sewer odour generation and mitigation and stormwater ponds/wetlands performance assessment and design) , this program will benefit all of the IRC partners as well as the larger technical community. The City of Edmonton and The City of Calgary have long been addressing urban drainage system issues, and Stantec through its commercial services has developed industrial designs for the retrofit / rehabilitation of urban drainage systems worldwide. The partnership between the University of Alberta and these entities will allow for the development of improved methods to increase the safety and reliability of urban drainage infrastructure.

The proposed IRC research represents major advances in the operation and performance of urban drainage systems and seeks to provide mitigation measures to optimize and increase the service life of these major infrastructure systems. Not only will the IRC program increase knowledge and training in critical areas of urban drainage system theory and practice, but it will also develop cutting edge technologies and methods that can applied to municipalities in Canada and abroad.

Dr. David Zhu, PhD, PEng, FCAE is the Professor of Water Resources Engineering and the Fellow of Canadian Academy of Engineering (加拿大工程院院士). Dr. Zhu is a leading international figure in the modernization of urban sewer design and operations to face the challenge of climate change and stringent environmental regulations. He is an outstanding world-leading expert in urban drainage and sustainable hydropower who has supervised 70 graduate students and authored 150 peer-reviewed journal papers. He has made numerous fundamental contributions to the design and operations of urban drainage systems. He has significantly advanced our knowledge of air/water dynamics with a number of high impact publications and engineering designs that won awards from the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering and the Consulting Engineers of Alberta. Currently he is retained by a number of municipalities to revise their sewer hydraulic design guidelines.