Our librarian gave the first workshop of the year

Our librarian gave his first workshop of the year! Our Science and Engineering Librarian, Evan Sterling, gave a workshop on an introduction to doing a research paper and finding quality academic research. In this workshop, Evan showed us specific skills and tips to find better papers with fewer dead ends using the subscription resources we have for students.  You can view his presentation here.

You can also check out his research guide for mechanical engineering at https://uottawa.libguides.com/c.php?g=265046&p=5078668 .

Designing and executing an effective literature search – our librarian gave a seminar

Evan Sterling, our Science and Engineering librarian, gave a special seminar for us.

Mystified by trying to find information in a new research area? Daunted by the idea of doing a research term paper or a thesis lit review? In this presentation, Evan discussed how to design and execute an effective literature search, and showed us tips and tricks for Scopus and Zotero.

In case you missed it, you can see the presentation from his slides here:

Mech grad seminar – library presentation

Special guest seminar this Friday! All welcome.

We have special guest seminar this Friday by Dr. Maurizio Porfiri.  He will be giving a talk on “Modeling finite amplitude vibrations of flexible beams in viscous fluids”.

Modeling finite amplitude vibrations of flexible beams in viscous fluids

The analysis of mechanical vibrations of flexible slender structures immersed in viscous fluids is of fundamental importance in many technical fields, across a wide range of length and force scales, from atomic force microscopy to naval engineering. One of the main challenges in this class of problems involves the prediction of the forces exerted on the oscillating structure by the fluid. In this talk, I will present a comprehensive modeling framework to interpret and predict the steady-state response of flexible beams oscillating in viscous fluids. We will depart from unsteady Stokes hydrodynamics to consider finite-amplitude structural vibrations, for which vorticity generation and transport modulate the fluid-structure interaction. To illustrate the methodology, I will focus on harmonic bending vibrations of a thin cantilever beam in an unbounded fluid. Theoretical results will be validated against direct three-dimensional fluid dynamics simulations and experiments on centimeter-size beams undergoing low frequency and finite amplitude underwater vibrations. Then, I will briefly touch on torsional vibrations and discuss the role of finite beam thickness, interactions with side walls, polychromatic excitations, and application to biomimetic propulsion and energy harvesting. I will conclude with a series of open questions and possible research directions.


Maurizio Porfiri was born in Rome, Italy in 1976. He received M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Engineering Mechanics from Virginia Tech, in 2000 and 2006; a “Laurea” in Electrical Engineering (with honours) and a Ph.D. in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics from the University of Rome “La Sapienza” and the University of Toulon (dual degree program), in 2001 and 2005, respectively. From 2005 to 2006 he held a Post-doctoral position with the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Virginia Tech. He has been a member of the Faculty of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department of New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering since 2006, where he is currently a Professor. He is engaged in conducting and supervising research on dynamical systems theory, multiphysics modeling, and underwater robotics. Maurizio Porfiri is the author of approximately 200 journal publications and the  recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER award (Dynamical Systems program) in 2008. He has been included in the “Brilliant 10” list of Popular Science in 2010 and his research featured in all the major media outlets, including CNN, NPR, Scientific American, and Discovery Channel. Other significant recognitions include invitations to the Frontiers of Engineering Symposium and the Japan-America Frontiers of Engineering Symposium organized by National Academy of Engineering in 2011 and 2014, respectively; the Outstanding Young Alumnus award by the college of Engineering of Virginia Tech in 2012; the ASME Gary Anderson Early Achievement Award in 2013; the ASME DSCD Young Investigator Award in 2013; and the ASME C.D. Mote, Jr. Early Career Award, 2015.

Experiences of a Young Engineer at Pratt & Whitney Canada – Monday March 30th

On Monday March 30th, Dr. Mavriplis will host a Canadian Aeronautics and Space Institute event, featuring:

Imane El karafi, M. Eng., PW800 Controls Systems, Pratt & Whitney Canada

Experiences of a Young Engineer at Pratt & Whitney Canada 

Location: 161 Louis Pasteur, Colonel By Building – Room A707

5:30 – 6:00 pm: Meet and Greet for CASI Members and Invitees 

Drinks and snacks will be served.

6:00 – 7:00 pm: Presentation

7:00 – 7:30 pm: Question and Answer Session


Imane has been working at Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) since 2010. Her experience has provided skills in engineering for engine assembly preparation and certification, engine testing on the ground and in flight, project management and sustainable development. Starting in 2015, Imane embraces a new role in Controls Systems within the revolutionary turbofan engine family PW800.

Academically, Imane graduated in 2010 with a double major in Mechanical and Information Technology from the University of Ottawa. In September 2014, Imane started an Executive Master’s in Business Administration at the University of Sherbrooke Campus of Longueuil.

As part of the CASI talk, Imane will be presenting the exciting opportunities she experienced at P&WC in the engineering disciplines and the challenges”young engineer” faces in the professional function of today.

The brand new PW800 engine was just certified in February for flight on a new Gulfstream aircraft.


All students welcome!

RSVP to Catherine Mavriplis at Catherine.Mavriplis@uottawa.ca

Drag Reduction on Airplanes using Laminar Flow Control – FRIDAY FEBRUARY 6th!

Special Seminar!  Speaker: Professor Dan Henningson, Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden

DATE: Friday February 6th, 2015

Location:  University of Ottawa    
Colonel By Pavilion,  Room  D207,  161 Louis Pasteur    
2:30-­‐3:30 pm: Presentation
3:30-­‐4:00: Question and Answer Session

Abstract:  Recent work within a number of EU-­‐projects have shown that laminar flow can significantly reduce drag and fuel consumption of modern transport aircraft. Methods include the application of suction on the wing surface and the modification of the wing geometry in order to minimize growth of disturbances that causes laminar-­‐turbulent   transition. Efficient  optimization  of  suction  distributions  and  wing  shapes  can  be performed using so called adjoint methods from optimal control theory. It is shown that such suction distributions and wing shapes significantly increases the laminar regions of wings on transport aircraft. Such optimization tools are now used in the next generation of laminar flow projects, such as the EU Joint Technology Initiative Clean Sky. Showstoppers and an outlook for future work will also be presented.

Dr. Henningson’s research and professional activities include Research on linear and nonlinear hydrodynamic stability and numerical simulation of transitional and turbulent flow.  His academic background is Civ.Ing KTH 1983, M.Eng MIT 1985, PhD KTH 1988, Docent KTH 1992, while his professional history incudes Research Scientist FFA 1985-­‐. Ass. Prof. Appl. Math. MIT 1988-­‐1992. Adj. Prof. Mechanics (20%) KTH 1992-­‐1998. Lektor Mechanics (50%) 1998-­‐1999.

References: http://www.e-­‐science.se/, http://www.cleansky.eu/

This  event  is  being  organized  in  collaboration with the University of Ottawa and the Carleton Mechanical and Aerospace Society (CMAS).