Agricultural Soil and Water Studies Laboratory

The Research Program

The Agricultural Soil & Water Studies Laboratory (Ag-SWSL) is a research lab within the Department of Engineering on Dalhousie Agricultural Campus. With a mandate to service agricultural community in Atlantic Canada, the primary goals of Ag-SWSL are:

  • Better understanding of Atlantic Canada’s water resource base and ongoing changes in climate and hydrology, and promote adaptive management practices

  • Develop and evaluate farm-scale technologies to improve water use efficiency, reduce environmental impacts

To accomplish our goals, the group uses state-of-the-art field (Bio-Environmental Engineering Centre, BEEC) and laboratory research facilities. The lab is equipped with a wide range of advanced water analytical instruments and has access to a number of advanced hydrodynamic, hydrological, and water quality models.

Leading Researcher

Dr. Haibo Niu
Assistant Professor (Water Resource Engineering)
Phone: (902) 893-6714
Office: Banting Building, 39 Cox Road, Truro, NS, B2N 5E3

Recent research initiatives

  • impact of climate change on Nova Scotia hydrological process its effects on agricultural water availability and quality
  • modeling of emerging contaminants in soils and water from land application of bio-solids
  • development and evaluation of small and decentralized wastewater management technologies

Specific research areas

  • water quality monitoring and modeling
  • fate and transport of contaminants in the environment
  • watershed (hydrological & hydrodynamic) modeling & management
  • irrigation, drainage and water table management
  • effects of climate change on agriculture water resources

Current projects

1. Separation and treatment of mink manure system flushing water
2. Treatment and reuse of vegetable (Cabbage and Turnip) processing water
3. Solid Phase extraction of organic pollutants from industrial wastewater