Energy Research Team


Dr. Alain Joseph
Dr. Alain Joseph

Research Scientist

A graduate of Dalhousie University, Alain completed an interdisciplinary PhD focused on systems analysis techniques for evaluating sustainable energy supply. Alain started working at NSCC in 2009, hired as the College’s first post-doctoral fellow. He took on the role of Research Scientist in 2011 and helped initiate the NSCC Applied Energy Research Lab (AERLab). Alain is also an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Dalhousie. He advises on a number of energy-related student projects at both institutions.

Alain maintains a diverse portfolio of energy and sustainability research projects and is interested in methods of improving energy technology and its use in Atlantic Canada. He is currently leading research funded through a 5-year NSERC College and Community Innovation grant aimed at integrating energy hardware, sensors, software, and data analytics to generate new energy products and services, in collaboration with industry and community partners.

Alain’s future focus is to build on existing knowledge of sustainable energy technologies by creating a research microgrid, and then studying how the interaction between people and technology can improve energy management. He is also testing better methods of collecting, managing, analyzing, and communicating findings from ‘big-data’ related to energy use. Trends in electric vehicles, solar, energy storage, and ‘Internet-of-Things (IOT)’ are creating new opportunities for a clean, secure, and affordable energy future. Alain’s research aims to help individuals and communities achieve this goal.

Tomi Allen
Tomi Allen

Research Associate

Tomi oversees and manages data analytics in the Applied Energy Research Lab (AERLab). With more than 10 years of experience in the field of renewable energy, Tomi serves as a knowledgeable mentor to the lab assistants. No stranger to solar water heating systems, he previously worked at a local solar heating company researching and developing solar powered electrical and mechanical products. With a degree in electrical engineering from The University of Western Ontario and extensive experience in renewables, Tomi has the skills needed to refine and improve Applied Energy Research energy projects.

Nicki Hall
Nicki Hall

Communication Specialist

Nicki leads the Applied Energy Research team on the planning and execution of strategic communications. Energetic, creative and intuitive, Nicki helps the program reach its knowledge dissemination objectives. Previous work at a fast-paced public relations firm equipped Nicki with the experience to effectively communicate with clients, stakeholders and staff to ensure projects remain on track. She has extensive experience coordinating logistics and team management for multiple events. A graduate of Dalhousie University and NSCC, her worldly experience, background in public relations and interest in sustainability make her a valuable asset to the team.

Ron Lambkin
Ron Lambkin

Lab Assistant

Ron aspires to use green technologies to enhance Canadians lives while decreasing the negative impact on our planet. In the Applied Energy Research Lab (AERLab), he has been working on integrating electronics into the labs electrical grid, which is a key component in the design of the microgird. An important part of his work is researching and comparing latest technologies to help the team decide on what best suits the labs needs. A self-starter with strong work ethics, Ron taught himself programming skills to create a computer program that can predict how much energy the lab can expect to produce over a given period from its renewable energy resources. Ron is often the first one in the lab and the last one to leave.

James (Jamie) Thomson
James (Jamie) Thomson

Project Coordinator

Jamie coordinates the NSCC Applied Energy Research Lab’s (AERLab) student and industry projects, bringing over 30 years of design, procurement and test experience to this task. A graduate of the University of Saskatchewan in Mechanical Engineering, Jamie has extensive experience packaging scientific, aerospace and military electronics for use in harsh environments. He is well versed in building science, electricity policy and efficiency programs. A certified Passive House Designer, he works at the AERLab to demonstrate innovative ways to integrate renewable energy and energy storage systems into the existing built environment. 

Tyler Smith
Tyler Smith

Lab Assistant

In year one of NSCC’s Electrical Engineering Technology Program, Tyler discovered a passion for renewable energy, specifically in data logging and data management. This interest, along with his ability stay on task and pay attention to details, landed Tyler a spot working in the Applied Energy Research Lab (AERLab). He currently focuses on data acquisition from a weather station deployed on the roof of NSCC’s Centre for the Built Environment wing. In his first few months on the job, Tyler successfully redeployed a data logger that had become inoperable in 2015 due to severe weather conditions encasing it in ice. His perseverance and troubleshooting capabilities make him an important part of the AER team.

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