Fermentation Support Technician

Updated: about 2 months ago
Deadline: 08 Jan 2021

This competition is open to all applicants however internal candidates and applicants who were former employees of the University of Alberta in the past 18 months will be given priority consideration before external candidates.

This is a one year appointment from date of hire and offers a comprehensive benefits package which can be viewed at: Faculty & Staff Benefits .

The Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science (AFNS) has an opening for a Fermentation Support Technician in the Biorefining Conversions and Fermentation Laboratory.  The fermentation suite of the laboratory is comprised of twelve 5 L and four 10 L fermentation units, along with a wide-variety of supporting infrastructure.  Currently, this infrastructure supports several research programs including the production of sustainable fuels, the development of bio-based materials and products, and the generation of single cell protein for animal feed applications.  Projects are driven by commercializable outcomes and several have significant industrial investment and partnership.


1.  Learn, perform, and develop routine experiments:

  • Search and read relevant literature regarding laboratory protocols and development procedures as required.
  • Develop and modify existing lab methods, protocols, and techniques to improve efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and/or quality of data.
  • Prepare samples for subsequent analysis using set lab protocols.
  • Operate laboratory infrastructure and/or conduct analysis using set lab protocols.
  • Compile data and carry out all required data processing and calculations.
  • Perform qualitative and quantitative data analysis and interpretation, prepare data for presentations and publications, present data to collaborators and other stakeholders, participate in conference calls and meetings with collaborators.
  • Communicate with the supervisor and program managers of the lab.

 2.  Provide technical support for the fermentation suite and research programs in the Biorefining Conversions and Fermentation Laboratory:

  • Ensure the suite is utilized properly and that usage is documented accurately.
  • Carry out regular maintenance and cleaning of fermenters and related equipment.
  • Maintain, setup, and troubleshoot software used for control of the fermentation suite and accompanying documentation.
  • Demonstrate, train, and explain instrument usage and experimental techniques to postdoctoral researchers, graduate students, and technicians, and summer students.

3.  Lab management activities:

  • Support training of postdoctoral researchers, graduate students, technicians, and summer students with regards to laboratory safety (i.e. Biohazard, chemical storage, and ensure safe laboratory practise are adhered to).
  • Order supplies, including price negotiations.
  • Ensure lab runs smoothly by maintaining supply inventories and records, organize and clean laboratory space, maintain a chemical inventory, and process the chemical waste disposal.


  • Fermentation related MSc, or alternatively, a minimum two-year related diploma program with an additional 2 years of fermentation experience.
  • Strong understanding of fermentation systems and aseptic techniques.
  • Familiarity with bioreactors and basic microbiological lab techniques.
  • General instrument experience.
  • Work independently and as part of a team to complete tasks.
  • Drivers licence is an asset.

Note: Online applications are accepted until midnight Mountain Standard Time of the closing date.

We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those individuals selected for an interview will be contacted.

View or Apply

Similar Positions