Jessica Van Brummelen, Kurt Yesilcimen, Ephraim Nowak, Nasser Alqahtani, and Bara Emran comprise the Advanced Control and Intelligent Systems (ACIS) UAV Team which recently returned from the Game Changer Competition in Vancouver.
The 3rd annual LNG Conference is hosted by the BC Government in Vancouver each year and includes the Game Changer Competition. The ACIS UAV Team, the only team representing UBC’s Okanagan campus, placed 1st of five teams in the Innovation in Engineering category.
Ephraim Nowak, on behalf of the team, presented the team’s poster and answered questions about their project. “Our project fit perfectly with what the competition was looking for,” said Nowak.
The team’s project looks at using a UAV to detect methane leaks from a natural gas pipeline, improving efficiency for companies and consumers.
“If UAV’s can be used to detect leaks instead of ground crews or manned aircraft, costs will be lowered and those savings will be passed on to consumers,” explains Nowak.
The team placed a laser-based methane detector on board a UAV and tested it at the City of Kelowna’s landfill gas recovery system that uses collected gases to produce electricity. These field tests validated their system.
The UAV Team is housed in the ACIS Laboratory led by Dr. Homayoun Najjaran in a project carried out in collaboration with Dr. Dwayne Tannant and supported by the BC Oil & Gas Commission, STAR, Mitacs, and Hetek Solutions Inc.
This win includes a prize of $5000 for the UAV Team and a matching amount for the School of Engineering.