VIU Scholarship, Research, and Creative Activity

Applied Environmental Research Laboratories

About Us

The Applied Environmental Research Laboratories (AERL) conducts pure and applied research in the environmental and bioanalytical sciences, and supports the training of highly qualified personnel in trace level chemical analysis.

Our facilities are well equipped for chemical measurements by both traditional and emerging methods. The AERL team has a range of expertise and access to instrumental methods used to identify and quantify contaminants and naturally occurring substances.

Many of our projects involve the development and use of direct mass spectrometry instrumentation and strategies for real-time, ultra trace level chemical analysis.

Collaborate - Innovate - Disseminate – Educate - Local Touch -- Global Reach

What's Happening

Working with partners at Lifelabs, Island Health, and the BC Centre on Substance Use, VIU’s Dr. Chris Gill is combining a paper-based sampling method with the analytical power of mass spectrometry to create robust tests that can be deployed at harm-reduction sites or as part of a mobile testing service. Our pioneering efforts with developing paper spray mass spectrometry (PS-MS) for fentanyl harm reduction have recently been recognized and published in the peer reviewed journal Clinical Biochemistry.
Our brand new, state-of-the-art, mobile mass spectrometry facility, one of only a few in Canada, made its inaugural road trip this fall.

Content Sections

Research Projects

The AERL specializes in collaborative research projects involving faculty, students, private sector and community partnerships

Direct Mass Spectrometry where and when it's needed

Infield testing during Alberta oilsands mass spectrometry campaign in the Fort McMurray area

Our Students

AERL's high caliber students are doing science that is recognized internationally