Energy, Renewables and Carbon Management (ERCM)

In partnership with Laurentian University, MIRARCO has invested in a new Chair of Energy in Mining to lead research in this area. The new chair, Dean Millar has established the Energy, Renewables and Carbon Management team.

  • SankeyTrees
    SankeyTrees is an application for creating 4D visualizations of energy flows between processes. A 3D model of the studied site can be imported in VTK format to provide spatial reference. Units can be specified and associated with different energy types, and flows can be defined between processes with different magnitudes for each time step. The radius of each flow line is proportional to its magnitude, and each unit is associated with a scaling factor, which can be used to fit the data to the site model. Furthermore, the colour and opacity of the site model and flow lines can be customized to ensure that important details are visible.
    You can download SankeyTrees here.
  • Mining Energy Efficiency Best Practice Database
    The intent of this register is to enhance transparency and facilitate dissemination of best practices with respect to energy matters in the mining industry. A standardized template has been developed to assist with the assessment and comparison of energy management measures. Submitted case studies will be reviewed and added to the database.

It’s What We Do:

  • Whole and life cycle, power, heat and fuel audits and demand profiling.
  • Appraisal and concept development of energy consumption reduction technologies (including energy efficiency) for the minerals sector.
  • Integration of renewable energy technologies into the mining sector.
  • Renewable heat technology application development including heat recovery and utilization of geothermal energy.
  • Investigation of revenue enhancement opportunities via carbon trading and the clean development mechanism.
  • Greenhouse gas mitigation and avoidance, development of innovations in carbon capture technology.


Dean MillarProfessor Dean L. Millar B.Eng.(Hons), PhD, ARSM, DIC, FIMMM, Certified Energy Manager (CEM), Director
Dean Millar is the Director of the Energy, Renewables and Carbon Management (ERCM) group and Professor of Energy in Mining within Laurentian University’s Bharti School of Engineering. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, holds a bachelor’s degree in Mining Engineering and a doctorate in Rock Mechanics, both from Imperial College, London. He has been engaged in teaching, research and professional consultancy services in the renewable energy and mining businesses over the last 20 years.


Harvard FarrantHarvard Farrant B.A. B.Sc. B.Eng. M.Sc. Mechanical Engineer (Renewable Energy)
Harvard has worked in industry for over 25 years as a software developer, technical writer and documentation manager. More recently, he was a renewable energy consultant and owner of ENAIRGY – a solar PV/thermal systems installation company.
PhD Research Project: Investigating lightweight, composite materials for small wind turbine airfoils (25 to 100 kW). Funded by Ontario Research Fund, Research Excellence project, SUMIT.
Keywords: lightweight airfoil, small wind turbine airfoil/blade


Glenn LyleGlenn Lyle B.Sc. M.Sc. P.Eng. Mining Engineer, Associate
Glenn earned a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Mining Engineering from Queens University in Kingston. He worked at Inco (now Vale) for 33 years in various roles in Engineering and Operations. In 2009 he joined the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation (CEMI) where he was a Research & Development Director, specializing in mine productivity and ventilation-on-demand. He now works as an associate with MIRARCO in the fields of Health & Safety, Risk Management and brings his considerable operational experience to the ERCM group.


Sidney SchafrikSidney Schafrik B.Eng. M.Eng. Mining Engineer
Sidney is a member of the Chippewas of Mnjikaning First Nation in Rama, Ontario. He has undertaken energy efficiency and infrastructure studies for many First Nations throughout Manitoba and Ontario including the development of Social Risk Assessment studies. He also worked for Neegan Burnside for 8 years.
PhD Research Project: Evaluating the geometry of heat exchange in broken & fragmented rock using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) codes. Funded by Chippewas of Mnjikaning First Nation
Keywords: CFD validation, geometry of heat exchange, NHEA


Michelle LevesqueMichelle Levesque B.Sc. (Chemistry) M.A.Sc. (Natural Resources Engineering), EMIT
In the past 17 years Michelle has gained experience working in academic and research settings at Laurentian University as well as in the paste backfill group at Golder Associates in Sudbury. Michelle is an Energy Manager in training.
PhD Research Project: Improving the methodology of energy management for the mining industry. Funded by Vale.
Keywords: energy management, mining sustainability, Sankey diagrams


Kim TrapaniKim Trapani B.Sc. (Hons) Renewable Energy
Kim worked as an energy consultant in Malta, including energy audits for buildings using IES-VE and NRC RETScreen software. She has performed advanced fluid and thermal analyses for thermal storage systems using SolidWorks 3D modelling software.
PhD Research Project: Assessing floating solar photovoltaic (PV) systems for lacusterine and marine environments, including mine tailings ponds. Funded by MIRARCO.
Keywords: floating solar PV, marine solar PV, mine tailings pond solar PV


Olimpia BaneteOlimpia Banete B.Eng. Mechanical Engineer
Olimpia worked in the Romanian mining industry for over 10 years . She was a mechanical engineer at an SNLO open pit operation and managed maintenance for their heavy equipment, including bucket wheel excavators, soil spreaders and conveyor belt systems.
MASc Research Project: Modelling the natural heat exchange area (NHEA) at Sudbury’s Creighton mine using the Lattice Boltzmann method. Funded by SUMIT.
Keywords: Lattice Boltzmann method, Poiseuille flow distribution


Adam TurcotteAdam Turcotte B.Co.Sc. B.Sc. M.Sc. Computer Analyst
Adam is a computer programmer at MIRARCO. He has developed a software package called Sankey Trees that allows energy flows to be depicted with spatial reference and temporal variation.
Function: Adam writes computer programs that turn the research and development results of the group into useful software tools, for use by ERCM group researchers and the mining industry, more widely. Funded by SUMIT and MITACS.
Keywords: computer software, 3D visualization, Sankey Trees


Alberto RomeroAlberto Romero M.Eng. Mechanical Engineer
Alberto worked for a Spanish Regional Administration as a supervisor of educational building projects. He also worked as a research and development engineer in Seville for Hispacold – an automotive air conditioning company. Alberto is seconded to the energy group at BESTECH Inc. for two days each week, to extend his PhD studies in energy management for the mining industry.
PhD Research Project Title: Studying the optimization of a mine site’s energy supply. Funded by SUMIT.
Keywords: optimal mine site energy supply, polygeneration, mine energy, control systems storage


Saruna KunwarSaruna Kunwar B.Sc. M.Eng. (Natural Resources Engineering)
Saruna was a volunteer worker for ECCA, an environmental conservation and management NGO in Nepal. She worked for AGAT laboratories in Sudbury before starting her PhD research in early 2013. Her topic concerns the low carbon, low cost ventilation and cooling of deep mines using cryogens produced by bespoke wind turbines.
PhD Research Project: Studying the viability of using cryogenic cycles for mining ventilation and refrigeration. Funded by the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation (CEMI).
Keywords: Cryovent, cryogenic ventilation cycles


Listing of ERCM Publications

  • Energy Renewables & Carbon Management (30th April 2012 – 1st May 2013)

  • Energy Renewables & Carbon Management (30th April 2011 – 1st May 2012)

  • Ventilation & Production Optimization


List of Former ERCM Members:

    • Dr. Monica Carvalho, Professor at the Alternative and Renewable Energy Center in Joao Pessoa. Joao Pessoa


    • Jeff Shaw, Automation EIT at BESTECH. BESTECH


    • Jaime Waine, Sales Advisor at Orica Canada Inc.. Orica Canada Inc.



List of Former ERCM Interns: