Room 0G 034A, Elmwood Building
School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology (GAP)
Queen’s University Belfast
Belfast BT7 1NN
Northern Ireland, UK
+44 (0)28 9097 3312
PhD Research Title;
‘Spatial analysis approaches to modelling water quality in Northern Ireland’.
Losses of nutrients via drainage and surface runoff from agricultural land have a significantly adverse impact on Northern Ireland water quality. Factors affecting nutrient losses have been investigated in previous research at various scales from micro-laboratory plots of 1-2000m², to catchment scales of 50-4000km² with spatial data on land cover and farming intensity in Northern Ireland utilised as scaling factors. Such previous models for investigating water quality have a limited spatial resolution and have no capacity in determining seasonality in loss rates, despite the seasonal character of environmental phenomena such as eutrophication and algal bloom.
My research involves the application of spatial analysis techniques including Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and geostatistics. These techniques will be used to develop more spatially explicit and temporally dynamic models for nutrient losses (specifically nitrates) in modelling water quality in Northern Ireland, through improved degree of spatial resolution and increased emphasis on seasonality. The research aims to improve the environmental quality of water bodies in Northern Ireland.
Funding for this research project has been provided by a postgraduate studentship from the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD).
My QUB undergraduate BSc Geography degree was completed in 2008.