News and Events

Nov 30th, 2020

Riverfront display honours local victims of plane crash

UWindsor President Robert Gordon and Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens (far right) are joined by members of the local Iranian community to unveil a memorial site on the riverfront not far from campus.

A collection of commemorative trees and benches has been added to Windsor’s riverfront to honour the memory of five local victims of Ukrainian Flight PS752, which crashed Jan. 8.

Doctoral student of civil engineering Pedram Jadidi; biology research assistant Samira Bashiri and her spouse Hamidreza Setareh Kokab, a PhD candidate in mechanical engineering; and civil engineering doctoral student Zahra Naghibi and her spouse Mohammad Abbaspour Ghadi were among 176 people killed when the plane they were on was shot down during liftoff from Tehran.

UWindsor President Robert Gordon and Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens were joined Thursday by members of the local Iranian community in honouring the lost family, friends, and colleagues.

“The students and friends we lost to the Tehran air tragedy will never be forgotten by their University of Windsor family,” Dr. Gordon said. “This memorial installation will serve as a tangible reminder of the lives they lived, their great impact on our community, and the unlimited potential that was lost to the world on that day in January.”

Nov 9th, 2020

Windsor Water Treatment Plant

A team of UWindsor researchers is using sewage to track and create an early warning system for the community spread of COVID-19.

Mike McKay, executive director of UWindsor’s Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research, is leading the project in conjunction with civil and environmental engineering professors, Nihar Biswas and Rajesh Seth and researchers from UWindsor’s Faculty of Science and the University of Tennessee.

Early into the pandemic, Dr. McKay recognized you can determine trends in the infection rates in a given community by detecting the presence of the virus’s genetic signature in the sewage entering wastewater treatment plants.

Oct 30th, 2020

Dr. Mitra Mirhassani Posing

Dr. Mitra Mirhassani’s research in autonomous vehicles and cyber security has put her on the national stage for the second time this year.

The associate professor in the Faculty of Engineering received the inaugural APMA Institute of Automotive Cybersecurity (apmaIAC) Outstanding Individual Cyber Achievement Award during a virtual awards ceremony on Oct. 29 for showing exemplar cyber security achievements in both education and research.

Mirhassani was recently recognized as one of Canada’s Top 20 Women in Cyber Security (2020) by IT World Canada.

“Dr. Mirhassani is an outstanding mentor to a wide variety of students and an outstanding leader in her field of cybersecurity research,” says Heather Pratt, UWindsor’s Executive Director of Research and Innovation. “We are very proud of Dr. Mirhassani’s achievements.”

Oct 7th, 2020

A screenshot shows the Ed Lumley Centre for Engineering Innovation students created in Minecraft.

A screenshot shows the Ed Lumley Centre for Engineering Innovation students created in Minecraft.

The University of Windsor Engineering Students’ Society is bringing campus to the screens of students learning from home.

The society has created a replica of the University of Windsor campus on Minecraft — a video game that allows you to create a virtual world with Java programming. 

Students can explore each floor of the Ed Lumley Centre for Engineering Innovation and take a stroll through UWindsor’s campus peppered with lush trees, flower beds and even its Promise campaign billboards. 

“Since we are all stuck inside on our computers for the remainder of the semester, it’s important to keep the sense of campus community,” says Theo Sancartier, president of the Engineering Students’ Society.

“With this Minecraft server, we hope to have students interacting in a way no one thought of before.”

Sancartier says the society’s executive committee and other volunteers spent the entire summer creating the server to ensure incoming students had a memorable experience and felt connected to campus. 

Oct 7th, 2020

Earlier this year, a numerous amount of Canadian universities and charities were affected by a global Blackbaud data breach involving Raiser’s Edge and NetCommunity products used to manage donor, alumni and organization information.
The University of Windsor was not impacted by this breach and would like to inform its supporters that their information is secure.
The University of Windsor uses a Blackbaud tool (Raiser’s Edge v. 7) for donor records. However, the university securely hosts all Raiser’s Edge data locally. The breach at Blackbaud impacted cloud-based data.

Oct 5th, 2020

Sahereh Sabandabadi, a master's student, poses outside

We live in a world where cars drive themselves, thermostats are set via smart phones, and home security systems can be armed and monitored remotely.

But how can we ensure the tiny components connecting these devices to the Internet are safe from malicious interference?

That’s the problem UWindsor graduate student Sahereh Sahandabadi is probing. As part of a larger research project in collaboration with Canadian telecommunications company Telus on 5G technology, the Master’s student in engineering is looking for ways to build safeguards into Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

“A crucial factor for the IoT devices is security and reliability,” said Sahandabadi. “Since these devices have limited battery power and can’t accommodate complicated processes in their sensors, new algorithms and methods are needed to provide this reliability.”

Sep 30th, 2020

Computer vision simulation recognizes certain objects and their locations within their environment.

Two UWindsor engineering researchers have received more than $715,000 in federal funding to bring cutting-edge artificial intelligence to the manufacturing floor.

Professors Jonathan Wu and Afshin Rahimi say they can mitigate human error and maximize productivity in manufacturing plants through advanced computer vision.

“Human errors were the major driver behind $22.1 billion in vehicle recalls in 2016,” says Dr. Wu, a former Canada Research Chair in Automotive Sensor and Information Systems.

He and Dr. Rahimi aim to create a smart production assistant that will help manufacturing plant operators gain unprecedented visibility into their manual production operations, allowing them to optimize their worker efficiency while maximizing productivity. They will achieve this by automating data generation using computer vision, converting raw data into useable information, visualizing information using common business intelligence methodologies and prediction of future.

The professors have received $717,450 of support from the Mitacs Accelerate program and additional support from Smart Computing for Innovation (SOSCIP) in partnership with i-5O, an early stage Silicon Valley based start-up that has developed a proprietary computer vision powered digital twin to help manufacturers track, measure, and improve their manual production processes. Headquartered in San Francisco with operations in Toronto and Windsor, the company works with large Fortune 500 manufacturers in North America and Asia.

Khizer Hayat, chief innovation officer of i-5O, says its collaboration with Wu and Rahimi will bring the latest in artificial intelligence for improving human performance to the manufacturing industry.

Sep 18th, 2020

Two Uwindsor students wearing mask.

The rise of the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed a worldwide need for readily accessible, high-grade face masks. A University of Windsor professor of materials engineering aims to mitigate this problem.

“The limited supply of essential protective equipment such as N95 face masks, which have been determined to aid in minimizing the spread of this disease, has proven detrimental to both health professionals and the public,” says Reza Riahi.

He is working with local manufacturers to develop activated nano-fibre layers produced by an electrospinning method, where a high voltage is applied to a polymer solution to produce nano-fibres with a high surface area and surface charges. These layers can be used to fabricate filters that are more effective than N95 masks, Dr. Riahl says.

“By using porous functional nano-fibre layers, we can produce high-efficiency mask filters to block fine particles, including bio-airborne, while minimizing breathing effort,” he says of the material, which can also be used as a filter in home-made masks or as a standalone fabric to make masks.

Sep 17th, 2020

Rajeev Ruparathna Posing

University of Windsor researchers are using computer modeling to help construction workers operate safely and efficiently during pandemics.

Civil engineering professors Rajeev Ruparathna and Niel Van Engelen are developing an implementation strategy for maintaining physical distance using a Building Information Modeling (BIM)-based optimized work schedule. The 4D modeling feature of BIM will allow the duo to predict construction worker movements and make alterations to project schedules to mitigate health risks.

“Site managers will be able to leverage the proposed scheduling technique and training material to enhance site productivity and safety, and avoid costly shutdowns during pandemics,” says Dr. Ruparathna.

Sep 14th, 2020

Engineering professor Rupp Carriveau and UWindsor engineering alumnus Lucas Semple in green house

A team of University of Windsor researchers is leading a national effort on the next frontier of sustainable and accessible food.

Working with experts from government labs and industry, the multidisciplinary team is using a new growing environment modeling tool and advanced additive manufacturing — often referred to as 3D printing — to explore how leading-edge greenhouse technology can be delivered to remote locations and optimized to reduce energy costs and increase production.

“We can explore how more radical changes, like using earthen walls or solar glass, could potentially benefit a leading-edge greenhouse without ever interrupting ongoing commercial operation,” says Rupp Carriveau, the project lead and director of UWindsor’s Environmental Energy Institute.

Dr. Carriveau says the team has created energy harvesting models to design distributed, networked, power systems to provide increased and more sustainable energy for a rapidly expanding sector. Controlled environment agriculture (CEA) such as greenhouses, vertical farms, and plant factories can increase access, yield density, uniformity, and nutritional specificity of food production.