Brent Sleep

Key Research Areas
Associated Researchers
Associated Organizations

Recent Research Projects

Remediation Education Network (RENEW)

2014/15-2019/20 • $1,650,000 • PI,CO
The Remediation Education Network (RENEW) is a CREATE program that will train the next generation of engineers and scientists in the interdisciplinary professional and technical skills they need to work at cleaning up the most challenging contaminated sites in Canada. Contamination of soil and...

Thermally Enhanced Remediation of Groundwater Contamination

2017/18-2019/20 • $153,000 • PI
Groundwater contamination by petroleum hydrocarbons and chlorinated solvents is a serious threat to human and ecosystem health. Aggressive thermal remediation methods such as thermal conductive heating, electrical resistance heating, and steam flushing are effective for volatile organics in...

Field Testing of Novel Technologies for Restoring Challenging Contaminated Sites

2019/20 • $151,600 • PI,CO
Cleaning up contaminated sites in Canada is a significant challenge, in part due to the limited cost effective technologies that can efficiently reduce contamination to safe levels. This is a particular challenge when impermeable soils, such as clay and silts, are contaminated. The use of...

Design of Living Infrastructure for Ecosystem Services

2019/20 • $150,000 • PI,CO
biodeversity,green infrastructure,hydrology,landscape architecture,living infrastructure,low impact development,sustainable sites,urban ecology

Thermally Enhanced Remediation of Groundwater Contamination

2017/18-2019/20 • $120,000 • PI
No summary

Measuring Emerging Contaminants in Drinking Water and its Sources

2017/18 • $149,999 • PI,CO
In Canada, public demand for high quality water and stringent regulations are the main drivers for the investigation of alternatives to conventional treatment processes. The requested equipment (a gas chromatograph with mass spectrometer detector, GC/MS) will replace a well-worm and obsolete...

Optimizing performance of integrated green roof photovoltaic systems

2013/14-2016/17 • $352,574 • PI,CO
Throughout Canada manufacturers and distributers of green roof and photovoltaic (PV) panels compete for installation of projects on industrial, commercial and high-density residential rooftops. These technologies are often viewed as direct competitors as both systems reduce the environmental...

Use of 3D sand printing to study the behaviour of porous geomaterials

2016/17 • $150,000 • PI,CO
The thermo-hydro-mechanical-chemical (THMC) behaviour of porous materials is dominated by processes that occur at the pore and grain scales. This proposal requests funding for purchasing a 3D sand printer capable of printing identical replicas of porous and fractured samples which will allow to...

Fate and Transport of Pathogens in the Subsurface

2012/13-2016/17 • $120,000 • PI
Pathogenic bacteria and viruses represent significant health threats to water supplies in Canada (CCME, 2010) and around the world (WHO, 2006). Pathogens can enter the subsurface from septic systems, agricultural activities, sludge disposal, and infiltration of contaminated runoff. In most...

Enhancing petroleum hydrocarbon removal from the subsurface with hot air flushing a new collaboration - The University of Toronto and InSitu Remediation Services Ltd.

2016/17 • $25,000 • PI
Groundwater contamination by petroleum hydrocarbons (PHC) such as gasoline and diesel fuel is a serious threat to human and ecosystem health. While levels of these compounds in the subsurface may be slowly reduced by naturally occurring processes such as volatilization and biodegradation, it may...

Radioisotope facility to track chemical & biochemical processes

2015/16 • $150,000 • PI,CO
Radiolabeling techniques have allowed exceptional discoveries that dramatically improved human and ecosystem health. Tracking of radio-labeled chemicals enables the study of transformation of drugs and endogenous compounds in the body, and that of agricultural and industrial contaminants in the...

Evaluating vertical transverse dispersion at sand/clay interfaces in groundwater systems

2015/16 • $24,000 • PI
Groundwater contamination is a serious threat to human and ecosystem health. Remediation of contaminated sites is often challenging because most sites are heterogeneous and contaminants are sequestered in low permeability zones such as clay lenses at these sites. Contaminants slowly diffuse out...

Impacts of green roofs on storm water management and urban climate

2011/12-2014/15 • $522,459 • PI,CO
Green roofs have been used for centuries to insulate buildings and beautifyurban environments. European countries, especiallyGermany, have adopted green roofs for use in modern buildings, helping raise awareness of their manypotential benefits. Green roofs have been shown to: effectivelyreduce...

Assessment of nZVI synthesis and mobility at a field trial

2011/12-2013/14 • $115,869 • PI,CO
The use of nanoscale zero valent iron (nZVI) for remediation of contaminated sites has received significant attention in part due to the ability of nZVI to rapidly transform contaminants in controlled laboratory experiments. One problem that has hampered the widespread implementation of nZVI is...

Gas-enhanced in situ thermal treatment for rapid site remediation

2010/11-2012/13 • $402,300 • PI,CO
There are tens of thousands of abandoned industrial properties in Canada where soil and groundwater have been contaminated by hazardous organic chemicals. Redevelopment of these brownfield sites is economically and environmentally beneficial to the surrounding communities. However, redevelopment...

Thermal remediation of multicomponent NAPL contamination in highly heterogeneous subsurface systems

2010/11-2011/12 • $70,000 • PI
Thermal remediation methods include hot water flushing, steam flushing (SF), electrical resistance heating (ERH), and thermal conductive heating (TCH). To date, there has been little research conducted on thermal remediation in highly heterogeneous subsurface systems (e.g. Smithville fractured...

Low cost carbon substrates to stimulate in Situ Bioremediation of chlorinated solvents

2011/12 • $24,540 • PI
Remediation of groundwater contamination by chlorinated solvents remains a serious scientific and technical challenge. It is now well established that chlorinated solvents such as trichlorothene may be biodegraded to ethene by indigeneous subsurface microbial communities under anaerobic...

analytical electron microscope (asem) for research and training in textural and chemical analysis

2010/11 • $143,000 • PI,CO
Detailed chemical and textural analysis of synthetic and natural samples is central to the development of advanced engineered materials as well as to our understanding of the Earth and terrestrial planets. The electron microscope is one of a family of modern instruments used to provide this...

Investigation of CSIA as an innovative quantitative tool for performance assessment of groundwater remediation at contaminated sites

2010/11 • $138,500 • PI,CO
Contamination of groundwater by organic contaminants represents one of the most urgent challenges facing environmental scientists, industry, government regulators and society. This application addresses directly the Target Area Healthy Environment and Ecosystems, specifically addressing the...

Development of nanometals for source zone remediation

2010/11 • $120,310 • PI,CO
Environment Canada estimates that 29% of the population consumes groundwater as their domestic water so protection of this resource is essential to the health and well-being of Canadians. Historically, the subsurface was thought to act as a natural filter of wastes injected into the ground. The...