Grand River Chapter
2013 Winter Newsletter
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Chair's message 2013

Chapter Members,

While 2012 has come to a close, I wish all Grand River Chapter members a prosperous New Year.

I would like to personally invite you to our Annual General Meeting (AGM) to be held on February 13,  2013 at the University of Waterloo. The AGM is open to all Grand River Chapter members. We will  present the 2012 financials, award the PEO student scholarships, present newly licensed engineers with  their PEO certificates and elect your Executive for 2012. The event is free to all members but you must pre-register on the website at 

Over 50 newly licensed engineers were presented with their certificates in 2012. Family, friends and  other PEO members were on hand for these presentations. 

We intend to run more events, technical and education tours, outreach programs and social events in  2013. You will find dates for these events and others in this newsletter.

This is the time of year for the PEO Council elections. Election information appears in the January/February issue of Engineering Dimensions and is posted on the PEO website. You can find out  who is running for which position and their election platform. Please ensure you take the time to vote so that you can influence the way your profession works.

Professional Engineers Ontario, as well as our chapter system, relies heavily on the work of dedicated volunteers. Our profession is changing and we, as individuals, will need to adapt as well. I urge you to become involved with your chapter and find out more of what we can offer, as well as what you can offer your profession. If you are interested, please contact us for volunteer opportunities.

This is my last newsletter as your Chair. Beginning in February after the AGM, I will move to Past Chair and Kaoru Yajima will take on the role of Chair for the chapter. Kaoru is a Senior Project Engineer at the Region of Waterloo and is looking forward to working with our executive moving forward. Again, if you  have any comments, concerns or ideas on how we, as your Executive, can serve you better, please don’t hesitate to contact me.


Richard Pinder, M.A.Sc., P.Eng. Chair, PEO Grand River Chapter

Published in Chair’s message
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

2013 AGM Notice

Monday, February 11, 2013 
University of Waterloo, Engineering 5
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

As the Chapter Chair, I invite all members to attend the Grand River Chapter Annual General Meeting. A certificate presentation ceremony for newly licensed professional engineers within our chapter is included.There is no cost to attend the AGM. Please register at:

Richard Pinder, M.A.Sc.,P.Eng. Chair, Grand River Chapter PEO

Published in AGM Notices
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Chapter 2011 Golf Tournament

By R.G. Zytner, Ph.D., P.Eng., FEC

The 2012 Tournament was held on Thursday, June 21 at the Guelph Lakes Country Club. The weather cooperated and 82 golfers had a great time.

    • The team competition was won by Jamie Jupp, Andrew Grice, George Giovinazzo and Rob McCullough with a score of 58 (-13).
    • The most honest team was Patrick Dietrich, Rob Callaghan, John Gardhouse and Griffin Lacey.
    • Closet to the pin winners were Sarah Primmer, Mike Morgan and Richard Zytner.
    • Longest drive winners were Carrie McMillan and Matt Downey, while the straightest drives were struck by Amanda Froese and John Michalofsty.

Contest holes were sponsored by CH2M Hill, Genivar, Interbase Consulting, Ontario Concrete Pipe Association, Peto MacCallum Ltd., Trane and Wigglesworth Group.

Additional prizes for the prize table were provided by Capital Paving Inc., Gamsby & Mannerow Ltd., Genivar, Golder & Associates, Interbase Consulting, MBN Environmental Engineering Inc., OACETT, Pentair Canada Inc., Peto MacCallum Ltd., P-Sec, Tacoma Engineers Inc., and Guelph Lakes Golf & Country Club.

The chapter looks forward to seeing everyone again on Thursday, June 20, 2013 at Guelph Lakes Country Club for the 2013 Tournament.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Reaching High at Skyjack PEO Tour

By Jonathan Velasco, P.Eng.

More than 30 active members of the PEO Grand River Chapter toured the Skyjack Plant 2, located in Guelph, Ontario, on October 19, 2012.

Tour of Skyjack's manufacturing.

Tour of Skyjack's manufacturing.

Skyjack Plant 2 in Guelph is one of the company’s several manufacturing facilities worldwide that make the big, self-propelled scissor lifts, articulated booms, telescopic booms and telehandlers. Skyjack began manufacturing scissor lift work platforms in 1986 and through the 1990s grew the business to over 30 per cent market share to become a world leader in this sector of the aerial lift industry. Skyjack became part of the Linamar family in 2002 and, since then, continues its dominance in the industry.

A chance to ride the Skyjack sky-high scissor lift.

A chance to ride the Skyjack sky-high scissor lift.

The tour host and VP of Engineering Ed Lambert, together with Skyjack President Brad Boehler and their competent engineering team, presented Skyjack’s history, the growth and stability of the company, the products and its worldwide presence as market leader.

The participants were shown the welding, painting, assembly and testing of the different Skyjack models. Then they were treated to a sky high scissor lift ride 41 feet up in the cool afternoon air. This scary ride concluded the exciting Skyjack tour. The tour promoted such interaction among engineers, for both the participants and the host, that a part 2 in the spring of 2013 is likely to happen.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Kitchener Operations Facility Tour

By Shailesh Shah, P.Eng.

Members of the PEO Grand River Chapter enjoyed a successful technical tour of the Kitchener Operations Facility (KOF) on September 5, 2012. KOF is the City of Kitchener’s newly built facility located on 45 acres of land on Goodrich Drive, Kitchener. An approximately 300,000 square foot massive building has room for approximately 500 city staff, vehicles and equipment, and houses various municipal services, including road maintenance, snow clearing, watermain and sewer maintenance, gas-line works/utilities, parks and trail maintenance.

Participants look at the solar roof

Participants look at the solar roof; 2,660 photovoltaic panels are installed that generate approximately 500 kilowatts, enough energy to supply about 50 homes for a year.

At this tour about 30 chapter engineers had the opportunity to tour this LEED silver standard facility. The tour was guided by City of Kitchener Facility Management staff, who presented how the various building components included in the design and construction of the facility have resulted in reduced energy use and significant cost savings, as well as the past history of the facility and how an old industrial building has converted to an office premises.

Jim Edmondson, Kitchener Manager of Energy Management, explains about geothermal heat recovery system installations.

Jim Edmondson, Kitchener Manager of Energy Management, explains about geothermal heat recovery system installations.

In a fairly short stint around the facility, the participants had an opportunity to visit the solar roof, geothermal heat recovery system, mechanical room, fleet area, salt storage dome and greenhouse.

Participants get information on the salt storage dome

Participants get information on the salt storage dome that holds about 5000 metric tons of salt.

Looking at the prodigious response from the chapter members and great success of this tour, the chapter will plan to set up this tour again in the summer of 2013.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

National Engineering Month - March 2012

By Terry Gomez, P.Eng.

Children building K’NEX bridges at NEM event at The Museum, Waterloo.

Children building K’NEX bridges at NEM event at The Museum, Waterloo.

National Engineering Month was celebrated in conjunction with the K’NEX event organized by THE MUSEUM in Waterloo on March 3 and 4, 2012 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on both days. 

Younger children were afforded the opportunity to build bridges using K’NEX components and these bridges were then loaded to failure by means of wooden blocks.

Another highlight of the celebrations was the demonstration by Kitchener’s Christie Digital of their Vein Viewer, in both free-standing and hand-held versions. This demonstration of advanced technology enabled visitors to these events to observe the veins in their arms.

Several students from the University of Waterloo, a member of Consulting Engineers of Ontario and a few members of the Board of PEO’s GRC volunteered at this event. A good time was had by all!

Demonstration of Christie Digital’s “Vein  Viewer” at NEM
Demonstration of Christie Digital’s “Vein  Viewer” at NEM 

Visit the National Engineering Month web site for more information:

Published in Events Held
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

COM DEV Opens Door to Chapter

By Suresh Neethirajan, PhD, P.Eng.

Nigel Doran, Vice President (Engineering & Quality) at Com Dev, addresses the members of Grand River Chapter of PEO.

Nigel Doran, Vice President (Engineering & Quality) at Com Dev, addresses the members of Grand River Chapter of PEO.

Very often, the members of the Grand River Chapter of PEO are provided great opportunities to visit various manufacturing industries and other high profile organizations, preferably in the Guelph-Kitchener-Waterloo Region to get first hand exposure to their functions, to develop group culture, and to enhance the engineering learning experience. On the evening of March 25, 2012, a group of 25 members of the chapter visited COM DEV International Ltd. at Cambridge.

COM DEV is a leading manufacturer of advanced space hardware subsystems, and microsatellites for major satellite contractors, government agencies and satellite operators in civil, commercial and military sectors. COM DEV employs over 800 people, mostly engineers and technicians, designing and manufacturing microwave subsystems for spacecraft, and exports 90 per cent of what they make. COM DEV holds almost 70 per cent of the world market of their core satellite products.

The tour started with a welcome speech and introduction to COM DEV and its history and operations. It was then followed by touring to the design, production and quality control facilities. The participants were fully engaged in learning a wide range of production processes, micronano-electronic fabrication functions and quality control operations. A variety of satellite components, including hardware for broadband commercial satellites, waveguide switches, input filters, coupler assemblies, surface acoustic wave devices, band pass filters and resonators for mobile and wireless communications are being manufactured at COM DEV.

One of the lessons learned was to see the relevance and implementation of engineering concepts in the real space science industry. Thanks to Nigel, Diane, Mike, Dan, Peter and others at COM DEV for providing ample time to the participants for interaction.

Applications of Satellites

Satellites not only deliver direct broadcast TV signals, but also deliver private data communications for companies and government, and make Internet surfing feasible. Some tangible applications of satellites include lowcost international long distance calls, safety of commercial airlines, delivery of legal, medical and educational services to remote communities and navigation assistance to vessels on the sea. In the words of a few of our chapter members who were a part of the COM DEV trip:

I definitely enjoyed the tour at COM DEV. While we should be proud of any company in our chapter area, it is nice touring the 'standouts' (COM DEV, Christie to name my last two impressive tours). What is most impressive is that both these companies are actually quite local right to their core/history. Thank you, Suresh, for setting up these great events!

Tom Balkos, P.Eng.

COM DEV tour was very good and well organized. Thanks to you and the chapter for the efforts in organizing such tours. Haell Khatib, P.Eng. Both Eric and I thought the tour was excellent and very worth the time taken. I'm glad it ran overtime so we could see it all.

Colin and Eric Harding

Nigel and Peter from COM DEV were too diligent in explaining all of the things, such as facilities, processes, in quite a bit of detail, which is nice, but if they had concentrated on mostly the technology aspects, that would have made the tour concise.

Anil Kukreja, P.Eng.
Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Linamar Opens Door to PEO

By Jonathan Velasco, P.Eng.

Due to an overwhelming success last year, Linamar again hosted another plant tour for members of PEO Grand River Chapter on April 27, 2012. The Frank Hasenfratz Centre for Excellence is the newest facility of Linamar in Guelph, and is home to several highly talented design engineers in the automotive industry.

The tour host and Operations Manager Larry Walsh, P.Eng., presented Linamar’s history, the growth and stability of the company, Linamar’s worldwide presence, and its ever increasing need of talented engineers to help drive the company to its $10 billion goal in the year 2020.It was surprising to learn that Linamar is not only involved in the automotive market, but also in the industrial and green energy markets as well.

Linamar Training Centre (aka The Centre) Operations Manager Larry Walsh welcomes the 52 PEO tour participants.

Linamar Training Centre (aka The Centre) Operations Manager Larry Walsh welcomes the 52 PEO tour participants.

The 52 participants raised several interesting questions, such as machining capabilities, unique expertise, and it stability. In three groupings, participants were shown the automation and robotics solutions, precision fixture design and fabrication, McLaren research and testing, and other general precision machining.

In a fairly short stint around the facility, the participants had a quick grasp of how the company grew from a single lathe machine in a basement into a $2.5 billion company after half a century. It was indeed another successful event in promoting engineering knowledge among members of our profession.

Compliments to the tour hosts, Operations Managers Larry and David, and Program Manager Geoff for a job well done.

A quick look at the shop floor.

A quick look at the shop floor.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Career Fair 2012, Career Education Council

By Peter S. Chisholm, P.Eng., FEC

With the Upper Grand District School Board, the Wellington Catholic District School Board, and the CAREER EDUCATION COUNCIL, Career Fair 2012 reminded student attendees it is “Your Future Your Choice”. The fair was held on November 21, 2012 at Centennial Collegiate Vocational Institute.

Host high school student volunteers ushered exhibitors, visiting students and parents through a no-cost “one-stop opportunity” for insight to employment, business and services offered by 80+ businesses, educational institutions and community organizations. Attended by 600+students and parents, the 80+ volunteer exhibitors showcased a broad diversity of career opportunities for attendees to consider while planning for the future.

The exhibit by the Grand River Chapter, Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) focused on engineering careers in conservation. Set in the Heritage Grand River Watershed, partnerships between professional engineers and conservation professionals were highlighted in a diversity of conservation projects: example projects included sewage treatment, management of river water quality, flood control, improved fisheries habitat for fish spawning and fish-food production, maintenance of fish populations, geophysical exploration related to groundwater protection and safety in foundations of structures. Numerous visitors to the PEO exhibit expressed both interest and surprise at the extent of partnerships between engineering and other conservation professionals in their home watershed.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Mannheim Water Treatment Tour

By Kaoru Yajima, P.Eng.

Around 45 chapter members gathered at the Mannheim water treatment plant in the evening of May 30 to learn how water is supplied and treated in the Region of Waterloo. Two tours, lasting one hour each, were conducted, one following the other.

Each tour began with an explanation of the water sources and treatment technologies used to produce drinking water. A discussion on emerging issues in drinking water treatment was also included.

After the presentation, a guided tour of the plant was made where the coagulation, flocculation, sedimentation, ozonation, filtration and UV disinfection processes of the treatment process were viewed.

Tour participants observe the UV disinfection process

Tour participants observe the UV disinfection process.

Many good questions were asked throughout the tour that reflected the diverse background of engineering disciplines represented by the tour participants.

Positive verbal feedback was received by many participants and additional tours may be planned in the future.

Published in Past events in review
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