Shane Peelar, a doctoral student of computer science, displays a sample machine part created by three-dimensional printing.Shane Peelar, a doctoral student of computer science, displays a sample machine part created by three-dimensional printing.

Computing partnership to support industrial application of additive manufacturing

Computer science researchers are working to solve industrial 3D printing challenges by writing advanced computer code.

PhD student Shane Peelar (BSc 2014, MSc 2017), along with his supervisor Luis Rueda, received an Ontario Centres for Excellence (OCE) Talent Edge Program fellowship to create an intelligent system that supports additive manufacturing and machining — known as hybrid manufacturing — for industry partner CAMufacturing Solutions Incorporated.

Additive manufacturing refers to the 3D printing technology that produces, layer by layer, three-dimensional machine parts. The method requires sending digital data to a machine which then builds the part, but Peelar says there is a big challenge is getting the engineering workstation computers, often found in machine shops, to handle the large amounts of data required in additive manufacturing.

“The computational requirements of additive manufacturing for Computer-Aided Design/Computer-Aided Manufacturing or CAD/CAM software are a lot bigger than traditional methods — the datasets are very large and more suited to be performed on super-computers than PCs, and it is not uncommon for companies to want to run these programs on older hardware, computers that are four or five years old,” says Peelar.

“We need to design scalable algorithms that can run and perform on older and newer hardware to allow additive manufacturing operations to be performed in a reasonable amount of time because companies don’t want this process to take eight hours; they want the software to run and produce parts in real time.”

CAMufacturing Solutions president Bob Hedrick says his company develops CAD/CAM software for companies that use 3D printing in conjunction with traditional methods like casting or welding in industrial manufacturing.

“This is so cool because it is a brand-new manufacturing process,” says Hedrick. “People have been machining, casting and forging for hundreds of years, where artisans and craftsmen taught each other — but this technology is coming directly from academic research, from the high-end down.”

His company provides software for various types of manufacturing industries to build actual parts, not just plastic replicas.

“These are real machine tools, complex tools you can put right onto a robot to start working in the shop,” Hedrick says. “We work with all sorts of industries — automotive, military, medical, mould shops, and aerospace companies. There is no end to the application of this.”

These parts can be expensive to make. If they aren’t structurally sound, they could result in extensive damage, so computer programs run modelling first.

Peelar says in addition to a program running in a timely manner, he is also training the machine model to learn from past experience.

“By training the machine model, using human operator knowledge, then like a chess program the model should start to recognize defects as well as things that are working well,” he says.

“Eventually the model will suggest areas for improvement and human operators can confirm if this is true, which will train the model, after several intervals, until eventually it works on its own to solve problems with reasonably high effectiveness.”

According to Dr. Rueda, this is a great opportunity to shorten the bridge between advanced manufacturing and computational approaches that use artificial intelligence and machine learning in a way to understand real life phenomena and how to deliver the right approach for guiding industrial tools like these.

“This kind of technology, and the solutions being developed by CAMufacturing, are fascinating, unique and globally recognized,” Rueda says. “Likewise, this project is a great opportunity for collaboration between the university and the fast growing industrial sector in the region.”

Hedrick says the solutions coming out of collaborating with UWindsor researchers are advanced and impressive.

“We couldn’t do this type of work without academic researchers,” says Hedrick. “We work with a lot of large companies that are manufacturing equipment, and the product being developed here is keeping pace with what these companies are doing right across the globe.”

The academic and industry research and development project runs for 16 months.

Sara Elliott

MazarinerSwedish almond tarts are one of the foods international students most miss during their time in Canada.

Students list the foods they miss

Students coming to the University of Windsor from abroad miss the foods they enjoy back home.

A survey of some of them turned up common themes, reports Ida Karlsson, an exchange student from Jönköping University in Sweden: “No matter if you visit the country or just find a really good restaurant, here is what you have to order.”

She says many of the respondents were from India, giving her loads of recommendations of foods to try.

“Based on the amount of people who listed it as the top food they miss, the mixed-rice dish biryani is something you cannot miss out on,” says Karlsson. “The same goes for the well-known butter chicken and the street snack panipuri (a crisp fried bread filled with spices, pulses, and vegetables).”

Chinese students listed hot pot, dumplings, and mapo tofu as classical dishes of their cuisine, accompanied by one of the country’s many varieties of tea.

Nigerians recommend egusi (melon seed) soup with eba, a cassava-flour staple; students from Saudi Arabia say they miss traditional saleeg, white rice cooked in broth.

“If you want good barbecue, go to South Korea and eat the grilled beef short ribs dish galbi,” Karlsson advises. “And maybe needless to say, you will find the best fish and chips in England and the best pizza in Italy.”

She says that when diners are ready for something sweet to finish a meal, her homeland of Sweden is the place to go.

“The best-selling book in Sweden, except for the Bible, is Seven sorts of cookies, which may say something about the Swedish culture,” says Karlsson. My personal favourite is the mazarin (an almond tart) or a simple chokladboll (an unbaked cocoa-oatmeal confection).”

Students, staff, and faculty attending the Celebration of Nations cultural festival will have a chance to sample some varied cuisine, with organizers distributing the Indian fritters pakora, Italian rice balls arancini, and Asian filled pastries spring rolls.

The event will begin at noon Thursday, March 15, with a parade of national flags from the Welcome Centre to the student centre via Turtle Island Walk. Opening ceremonies at 12:30 p.m. in the CAW Student Centre Commons will precede stage performances from 1 to 3 p.m.

Find more information on the festival website.

woman holding plastic near shorePlastic tops the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup’s list of types of litter on the country’s marine and freshwater shores.

Riverfront cleanup to celebrate World Water Day

Litter is a problem created by humans but wildlife pays the price. A group of UWindsor students is joining a nation-wide effort to tackle this problem head-on.

Members of the UWin Environmental Stewards will conduct a shoreline cleanup along the city’s riverfront on Sunday, March 18.

Eight cleanups on this site have collected 247 kilograms of trash since 2013, reports sociology professor Tanya Basok, the University’s environmental sustainability advocate. She has scheduled the event to coincide with World Water Day.

“The core of our group will be environmental studies majors, but anyone is welcome to join us in helping clean our beautiful waterfront,” Dr. Basok says.

She is especially excited to note that about 30 international students have already registered.

Volunteers will gather in the Windsor Sculpture Park at the foot of California Avenue at 10 a.m. The cleanup will extend from the Ambassador Bridge to Josephine Avenue until noon. Register as a participant on the event website.

Grad student Katie Fontana leads a lab in chemistry.Grad student Katie Fontana leads a lab in chemistry.

Survey to explore UWindsor teaching culture

An institution’s teaching culture is tied to student engagement and learning, instructor and learner experiences, and student persistence, says Erika Kustra: “Understanding the context and factors that impact teaching culture can help us enhance both teaching and learning, and enrich student and faculty experiences.”

Director of the Centre for Teaching and Learning, Dr. Kustra has partnered with eight Canadian universities to develop and implement a survey that examines perceptions of institutional teaching culture. This research is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and is championed by educational leaders at Western, Queens, McMaster, Laurier, Waterloo, Ryerson, Brock, and Calgary universities.

The anonymous, 20-minute survey is open to a random sample of undergraduate students; all faculty and graduate students; and staff in roles related to teaching and learning at the University. Participants are eligible to win one of two $400 VISA gift certificates.

This research has received clearance from the University of Windsor Research Ethics Board. To learn more, visit the project website or contact Kustra at, 519-253-3000 ext. 4842.

students holding laptop computersApplications for the 2018 Summer Experience Program must be submitted by Monday, March 19.

Program to fund summer work experiences for youth

The Career Development and Experiential Learning office is now accepting job proposals from UWindsor faculty and staff for the 2018 Summer Experience Program, which offers entry-level work for youth to develop skills that are career-related and transferable to the general labour market.

The number of positions is limited, and final approvals will be made by the provincial Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development.

Applications must be submitted no later than Monday, March 19. Find funding and eligibility details as well as the electronic application form on the program website. Direct questions to Sydney Murray, program co-ordinator in Career Development and Experiential Learning, at or 519-253-3000, ext. 2577.

Course to explore practical tools and strategies for technology-enhanced teaching

A free open online course offered by the Office of Open Learning will explore tools, resources, and strategies for teaching in online, hybrid, and technology-enhanced settings.

The “Practice what you teach” course will run for six weeks, starting March 26.

Instructor Mark Lubrick, a learning specialist in the Office of Open Learning, will cover:

  • quality standards for online lessons and courses,
  • templates and resources to help plan technology enhanced lessons and assessments,
  • free video creation and editing tools,
  • basic accessibility concerns and tools to evaluate accessibility,
  • free tools for adding interactivity, and
  • a brief introduction to free 3D animation tools.

“I want instructors to finish this course and have the basics to design high-quality, interactive, and multimedia-rich courses that are accessible to all students,” he says.

The course is designed for faculty and grad students, and will be delivered through Blackboard, with asynchronous components and one synchronous session a week.

“I have built the course around the concept of open education,” says Lubrick. “All of the technology tools demonstrated will be free for anyone to use.”

This course also counts towards the new Certificate in Open and Online Learning offered by the Office of Open Learning for faculty and grad students interested in online, open, and technology-enhanced learning and teaching.

The course is open to all UWindsor faculty and graduate students, who can register at:

Direct questions about the course or the Certificate in Open and Online Learning to Lubrick at or 519-253-3000, ext. 6867.

T4 slipsT4 tax slips are now available to UWindsor employees through the myUWinfo portal.

UWindsor T4 slips now available online

The UWindsor payroll department advises that T4 slips for the 2017 tax year have been processed and are available online on the myUWinfo employee portal.

This convenient and secure option will allow faculty, staff, and student employees to print and re-print their tax slips wherever and whenever they like with no waiting, no time lost in the mail, says payroll manager Cathy Quinn-Boroski: “It’s accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week for as long as you have access to myUWinfo.”

Before users can view or print their tax slips, they must consent to accept their tax slips online.

“If you have not previously consented, your tax slip has been mailed to your home address,” Quinn-Boroski  says. “However, you can still view and print them online if you wish.”

Instructions on the myUWinfo > myPAY section will help users through the process.