Group Members

Principal Investigators

Taco Niet, P.Eng., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Professional Practice, School of Sustainable Energy Engineering

Taco’s research deals with energy systems modelling, energy storage technologies, integration of renewable/variable technologies and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Dr. Niet focuses on addressing systemic challenges in the energy system including integration of variable renewables and working with emerging economies. Recent modelling work has addressed the nexus of climate, land, energy and water interactions in a combined modelling framework. Dr. Niet has taught a wide range of courses, including those on instrumentation, systems design and modelling, control systems, strength of materials, and technology and society. Dr. Niet supervises graduate students in research areas related to systems modelling, focusing on building tools that help society and policy makers effectively address climate and other system impacts and trade-offs.

Andrew Wright, Ph.D.

Adjunct Professor, Pacific Water Research Centre

Dr. Andrew S. Wright is the former chief technology officer for Datum Telegraphic, a mathematical and algorithmic silicon chip company for the cellular telecommunications industry. He continues to work with industry on innovations in conservation and sustainability initiatives, including working with a variety of cutting edge technology and engineering start-ups in Vancouver. His current work at SFU in climate adaptation and mitigation strategies for food, energy and water systems and his extensive mathematical modelling experience.


Nastaran Airanpoo, Ph.D.

Research Associate, Pacific Water Research Centre

Dr. Nastaran Arianpoo is a Willow Grove Research Associate at the SFU Pacific Water Research Centre. She obtained her Masters’ and Ph.D. at UBC Mining Engineering investigating opportunities for geothermal energy. Her research focuses on energy transitions towards renewable energy. Nastaran believes that the interaction of the energy system with the other human and natural systems (such as land, food, water, human wellbeing, and natural security) should be explored in the larger adaptation and mitigation policy contexts if our economy wants to genuinely move toward a low-carbon future. At the local level, through SFU’s Clean Energy Research Group, she focuses on assessing off-grid remote community options for clean energy sources.

Tewodros Walle Mekonnen

Ph.D. Student, Sustainable Energy Engineering

Tewodros has a Bachelor's in Mechanical Engineering from Mekelle University and Masters' in Energy Technology from Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia.  His Masters' research focused on Model-Based Design of Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine and Its Control System.

Tewodros’s Ph.D. will be on systems modelling and electrification pathways to support effective policy-making for sustainable development. Specifically, his research will focus on the barriers and greenhouse gas reduction opportunities with the electrification of commercial medium-duty vehicle fleets in British Columbia.

He has had more than 8 years experience as a Lecturer and researcher at Energy Centre, Addis Ababa University and at the Windfarm, Biofuels Implementing Programme, Energy System Development Pathways projects in Ethiopia.

Kiel Henkelman

Coop Student, Computer Engineering

Kiel grew up in Squamish, BC, and plans to graduate from SFU with a degree in Computer Engineering by the beginning of 2023. He has a strong interest in programming, geography, and how data can be used to inform issues such as urban design, the environment, and human quality-of-life. He has completed an SFU certificate program in Geographic Information Science, and in the past has been employed working on problems of transforming complex data types and geometries.

Kamaria Kuling

Ph.D. student, Sustainable Energy Engineering

SFU Living Lab Scholar

Kamaria Kuling was born and raised on the Sunshine Coast in British Columbia, Canada. She moved to Vancouver in 2012 to study physics at the University of British Columbia. Currently, she is working towards her master’s at Simon Fraser University in the Sustainable Energy Engineering program. Always passionate about science and the environment, Kamaria hopes to make an impact with her research in energy modelling.

Trevor Barnes

Masters’ student, Sustainable Energy Engineering

Trevor is a Masters' student in the School of Sustainable Energy Engineering at SFU. He graduated with a Mechanical Engineering Degree from BCIT in 2019, and went on to work as a manufacturing engineer in the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry before starting at SFU in the Spring of 2021.

As a member of the ΔE+ research group, Trevor is excited to work on energy system modelling projects and help build a renewable energy focused future!

Landon Reeves

Honours Thesis Student, Engineering Physics

Landon is an undergraduate student in engineering physics at SFU. He has experience working for Environment and Climate Change Canada modeling emissions from commercial vessels in Canada’s exclusive economic zone. Landon is passionate about sustainability in all its forms and has been to the UN to represent Canadian youth on sustainability issues twice. Through his engagement with the UN, he got involved with Sustainable Development Network Youth and was the Sustainable Development Goals Coordinator for SFU for two years.

Sina Motalebi

Ph.D. Student, Sustainable Energy Engineering

Sina has received his Bachelor and Master of Engineering degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of British Columbia. During his studies at UBC, he researched on campus energy management using battery storage, as well as cyber attack on water treatment facilities. He has previously worked as an Electrical, Instrumentation & Control Engineer with Stantec Consulting for more than five years and performed many projects on pump stations, water and wastewater treatment facilities in Canada and USA. He has also worked with the Quality Management team at BC Hydro for one year. Sina is currently working towards his PhD at Simon Fraser University in the Sustainable Energy Engineering program, focusing on the energy systems modelling and the integration of renewable/variable technologies.

Thomas Budd

PhD Candidate, SFU Energy and Materials Research Group

Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions Scholar & BC Graduate Scholar

Thomas Budd is a PhD Candidate at SFU’s Energy and Materials Research Group (EMRG) in the Faculty of Environment under the supervision of Dr. Mark Jaccard, Professor of Sustainable Energy at SFU’s School of Resource and Environmental Management, and Dr. Elicia Maine, W.J. VanDusen Professor of Innovation & Entrepreneurship at SFU’s Beedie School of Business. Thomas’s research focuses on advancing analytical tools capable of assessing the effectiveness of policies to transition energy systems towards a path of rapid deep decarbonization. He received his Bachelor of Arts (Honours with Distinction) in Economics and Master’s in Resource Management at SFU. His training and expertise includes the application of Energy-Economy-Emissions models for multiple sectors including industry, transportation, residential and commercial buildings, and the spatial aspects of land use in relation to urban energy systems.


Past Group Members

Mikhail Linsangen

Coop Student, Sustainable Energy Engineering, Jan-Apr 2021

Mikhail is currently pursuing his bachelor's degree in Sustainable Energy Engineering at Simon Fraser University. His passion for sustainability is rooted from being raised in a developing country where food, clean water, and energy was never a guarantee. Mikhail's goal is to use his engineering degree to give back to the communities that helped raise him.

Sepehr Rezvanifard

Coop Student, Mechatronic Systems Engineering, June - September 2020

Sepehr Rezvanifard is a 3rd year SFU Mechatronic Systems Engineering student and joined the ΔE+ research group for a three month coop in June 2020. He is expecting to graduate from SFU Mechatronic Systems Engineering in 2021.

Sammy Kaspar

Coop Student, Computer Engineering, Jan-Apr 2021

Sammy is in his third year of computer engineering and believes in the need to utilize technology to help solve some of the toughest challenges that will be facing us for the next few decades, like climate change, pollution, biodiversity loss, and water and energy scarcity. His passion rises from being a first hand witness to the hardships that water and energy scarcity imposed on the people of his war torn country of origin Syria.

Hannah Chan

Coop Student, Sustainable Energy Engineering, September - December 2020

Hannah is currently doing her bachelor’s at SFU in the Sustainable Energy Engineering program, and she is an enthusiastic learner who is passionate about the environment and climate justice. Hannah is working towards graduating in 2023, where she hopes to continue to explore and build a career in making the world a cleaner, safer place.

Felipe Patarroyo Singh

Coop Student, Sustainable Energy Engineering, Jan-Apr 2021

Felipe is a 3rd year Sustainable Energy Engineering student who is driven by the impact that nature has had in his life. With a strong sustainability approach he expects to help the world transition to sustainable practices, with a focus on Indigenous communities and developing countries. He is excited to work with energy modelling software that focuses on Land use and both water and energy systems.

Taryn Chang

Coop Student, Sustainable Energy Engineering, September - December 20202

Taryn Chang is a third year SFU student studying Sustainable Energy Engineering. Her passion for the environment has driven her to explore the future of clean energy and she hopes to one day work in sustainable development. She is delighted to join the ΔE+ research group during her fall 2020 co-op and is excited to work in energy modelling.