Research and Teaching Interests
Our cellulose pulp/fibres chemistry group at FPInnovations applies advanced, green and cost-effective chemistry to develop new processes and products for the Canadian pulp and paper industry. We have developed several innovative and proprietary processes for the chemical modification and high-value applications of Canadian bleached pulp fibres and cellulose filaments (CF), high-yield production of cellulose nanocrystals (CNC), bleaching and brightness stabilization of mechanical pulps, and improved generation of polysulphide for chemical pulping of wood chips.
Our group has extensive collaborations with researchers at UBC Chemistry. We have collaborated with Prof. Brian R. James on the catalytic hydrogenation of lignin chromophores and bleaching of mechanical wood pulps. Together, we have discovered a new class of bleaching and brightness stabilizing agents for mechanical pulp fibres. Use of one of these agents has been successfully demonstrated in a Canadian pulp mill, and two of our publications have been awarded the 2004 Journal of Pulp and Paper Science Best Paper Award and the 2005 Pulp and Paper Technical Association of Canada Douglas Atack Award for Best Mechanical Pulping Paper. Currently our group is collaborating with Prof. Derek Gates on the development of fire-retardant wood fibres for use as insulation materials or other green products, and with Prof. Edward Grant on the development of a Raman probe for on-line/process monitoring of chemical properties of cellulose pulp fibres and papers.
B.Sc., South China Institute of Technology (1983); M.Sc., University of British Columbia (Larry Weiler, 1988); Ph.D., University of British Columbia (Larry Weiler, 1993); NSERC Industrial Postdoctoral Fellow (Paprican, 1993-1994); FPInnovations Assistant Scientist (1994), Associate Scientist (1997), Scientist (1999), Senior Scientist (2002), Principal Scientist (2007-present); Adjunct Professor, UBC Chemistry (2002-present).