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Chairholder Profile

Mohamed Gamal El-Din

Mohamed Gamal El-Din

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Alberta

Chair Title

NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Oil Sands Tailings Water Treatment

Chair Program

Industrial Research Chairs Program


Senior Chairholder since 2011


The NSERC Industrial Research Chair (IRC) in Oil Sands Tailings Water Treatment will develop and advance economically viable solutions for sustainability in the oil sands industry. The overall goal of this Chair program is to develop and assess different water treatment strategies and their applicability to oil sands operations for recycling and/or the safe discharge of oil sands process-affected water. The long-term objectives of this IRC include integrating the gained fundamental and applied knowledge into actual water treatment and management options to be implemented by the oil sands industry, and providing a scientific foundation for the sustainable and integrated management of oil sands tailings water leading to the sustainable development of the Athabasca Oil Sands. This Chair program will lead to the development of highly effective treatment processes/strategies, resulting in the protection not only of the environment and wildlife, but also of human health.

This Chair program will conduct in-depth research in nine interconnected areas, covering the full spectrum of the engineering applications involved in the treatment and management of oil sands tailings water, including:

  1. characterization of water matrices;
  2. understanding of treatment process fundamentals;
  3. optimization of treatment processes;
  4. development of new treatment technologies and treatment/management approaches;
  5. design and scale-up of treatment processes;
  6. process-water treatment residuals management;
  7. identification and characterization of by-products generated by different treatment regimens and evaluation of their toxicity and any possible adverse effects;
  8. modelling of water quantity and quality in the receiving environment; and
  9. human health risk assessment.

Mohamed Gamal El-Din is a recognized leader in the national and international environmental engineering research communities, with significant and industrially relevant contributions in the areas of fundamentals and applications of advanced treatment approaches for water and wastewater. This Chair program is a joint venture between the University of Alberta, the oil sands industry, a water treatment utility company, a technology-development company, Alberta Innovates Energy and Environment Solutions, and Alberta Environment.

The outcomes from this Chair program will extensively promote environmental and public health and, more importantly, enhance water quality in the receiving Canadian environment. This Chair program is aligned with support for the ongoing efforts for the economic development of Alberta oil sands resources, and enhances the leadership and safety stewardship of Alberta scientists and government policy makers. Moreover, this IRC will result in a group of highly qualified personnel, with interdisciplinary expertise, strengthening Alberta’s and Canada’s capacity in the area of water treatment and management.


  • Syncrude Canada Ltd.
  • Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Shell Canada Ltd.
  • Canadian Natural Resources Ltd.
  • Total E&P Canada Ltd.
  • EPCOR Water Services Inc.
  • IOWC Technologies Inc. (Canada)
  • Alberta Innovates - Energy and Environment Solutions
  • Alberta Environment

Contact Information

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Alberta
Markin/CNRL Natural Resources Engineering
3-093 University Campus Northwest
Edmonton, Alberta
T6G 2W2

Tel.: 780-492-5124
Fax: 780-492 8198

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