UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Publications

Focus 1997

Item Metadata


JSON: focus-1.0115123.json
JSON-LD: focus-1.0115123-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): focus-1.0115123-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: focus-1.0115123-rdf.json
Turtle: focus-1.0115123-turtle.txt
N-Triples: focus-1.0115123-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: focus-1.0115123-source.json
Full Text

Full Text

Vol. 8, No. 2
Fall 1997
Productivity up, emissions down with
new pulp mill technology
New technologies developed by
Dr. Mohamed Gadala and Tristar Industries are nothing short of amazing—not
only for the pulp and paper industry, but
for the environment too. Gadala, Associate Professor in the Department of
Mechanical Engineering at UBC,
worked with partner Tristar Industries
in Delta, BC, to design and build a new
pressure washer drum for pulp mills.
A Domtar mill using
the new design prototype
in Red Rock, Ontario, reports an increase of 500
tons of pulp washed per
day to 700, and has gone   	
from 25% downtime to
zero. The problem was in the design of
the existing technology, a problem which
was manifested in the short life-span of
the drums.
Pulp must go through a washing
process to dilute and remove residual
cooking liquor and dissolved organic
from 25%
has gone
to zero.
Director's Corner 2
High-Speed Switches 2
Software Engineering 3
New Diagnostic Tools 4
Parallel Applications 5
Controlling Noise 6
Passing Notes 7
Lecture Series 8
and soluble material. The pressure
washer drum acts as a cylindrical conveyor allowing the liquor and water to
drain out of the pulp as pressure is applied. The old drum design had some
uncertainties, says Gadala.
"It was mainly the calculation of
accurate loading conditions on the
drum, as well as material properties and
fatigue characteristics, and the welding
procedures and locations during the
fabrication of the
drum," he explains.
These problems
meant that drums typically had a life-span of
two years, and their frequent failure
caused shutdowns in most mills around
the world. So in 1994 Gadala and
Tristar went to work to produce a new
drum, which until now was manufactured by a handful of companies in the
US and Europe.
"The project was risky because we
set our specific objectives very high,"
says Gadala. "The new drum would
have a 25-year life expectancy, be fully
compatible with existing equipment and
setups in pulp mills, and would maintain similar manufacturing procedures
and costs as the existing technology."
The new design eliminates the high
stress problem while still allowing the
wash water (or filtrate) to flow through
the ends of the washer drum; it also
incorporates a bolt-on journal. The ends
of the drum are formed from two large
Gary Hodgins of Domtar Packaging;
Samuel Young, Vice-President of Tristar;
Mark Tayler, Tristar operations manager;
Dr. Robert Evans, Head of UBC's
Mechanical Engineering Department; &
Dr. Mohamed Gadala display the joint
patent awarded for the pressure washer
drum seen in the background.
discs connected to a forged hub with the
connection between the hub and disc at
a large enough diameter to keep the
stresses down.
continued on page 6 DIRECTOR'S
High-speed switches for
networks of the future
The fields of computer systems
research and development continue to
grow in leaps and
bounds, presenting
us with vast and
global opportunities for education,
research and links with burgeoning industries who need more knowledge,
skilled people and research tools.
UBC becoming a global leader
The ground is always shifting in the
computer systems business, but CICSR
helps make that ground a little more
stable by integrating the research efforts
here at UBC with industry partners in
BC, throughout Canada and around the
world. UBC is becoming a world-wide
leader in computer systems research and
software development, in large part
because of our collaborative efforts
within the university and with our outside partners.
Profiles In research
In this issue of FOCUS we profile,
among others, Dr. Hussein Alnuweiri's
work in the area of high-speed packet
switches, which will have a profound
impact on network speeds. Software
developers can look forward to the results of Dr. Greg Bond's research into
building an intelligent software
debugger. Dr. Mohamed Gadala's
collaborations with Tristar Industries
will revolutionize pulp and paper production. New software design techniques
that allow engineers to build more effective systems are being developed by
Dr. Gail Murphy. And Dr. Alan
Wagner's research into parallel applications will enable networks to carry more
simultaneous traffic.
We are moving into another busy fall
semester, but let us take a moment to
recognize the ideas, advances and
accomplishments of some of the best
minds in the country-—right here at
Dr. Rabab Ward, CICSR Director
Focus Fall 1997
Can you imagine all the current digital
traffic in Canada being handled by just a
couple of large networks?
Dr. Hussein Alnuweiri can. He is
working on high-speed packet switching
for broadband networks of the future,
networks which will need to be far, far
larger to handle all the anticipated traffic. These switches would be buried
deep in the backbone of the Internet.
Terabit per second range
"The focus of my research is how to
design large-scale switches for future
high-speed networks that operate in the
terabit-per-second range. Such a switch
has about 100,000 times the capacity of
the standard Ethernet network, and this
will be required to support future multimedia traffic, video, teleconferencing,
and voice, data and file transfers, all of
which will need to be high-quality and
high-bandwidth," says Alnuweiri, Professor in UBC's Department of
Electrical and Computer Engineering.
His work also focuses on Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) and
Internet Protocol (IP) switching applied
to high-performance application-
specific architectures, but the current
applications are primitive examples of
what he expects to see in the next few
years when networks can support realtime applications.
Hundreds of thousands of connections
"It's not close to what we expect in the
future. Most networks cannot support
real-time services, although they try to
by using special software and file compression. Future networks will be able
to support hundreds of thousands of
simultaneous connections without the
flows affecting each other. They will be
able to isolate flows from one another
so that the quality of service that a user
receives is independent of what other
users get. There are many applications
that we can only imagine, but they will
emerge with the technology."
Alnuweiri, with research funding
from NSERC operating and strategic
grants, is also working on chip design
Hussein Alnuweiri ►
and hardware to support broadband
networks. "You can't design switches
without understanding the whole network. You need to know how to apply
condition control mechanisms effectively in a large network, and how to
transfer these working functions into the
hardware at the end."
Collaborating with industry partners
Alnuweiri is currently collaborating
with Newbridge Networks, an Ontario-
based company that is a major worldwide switch vendor. Working with their
ATM architectural planning group,
Alnuweiri is focusing on the feasibility
of implementing switches that operate
in the terabit range.
He is also collaborating with PMC-
Sierra in Burnaby, a major supplier of
ATM interface cards and chips who also
have a line of Ethernet switching products. Together, they are developing a
framework for the design and documentation of next-generation ATM
Alnuweiri joined UBC in 1991 after
completing a PhD in Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern
California in 1989. Ten graduate students are working with him on different
aspects of high-speed networks, including real-time scheduling, and
performance modelling and queuing.
"Several of my students are now working in these areas at Newbridge and
PMC-Sierra, so those companies have
gotten the qualified personnel that they
need from UBC," Alnuweiri notes.
Hussein Alnuweiri can be reached at
hussein@ee.ubc.ca ■ Working with industry to develop better
software engineering tools
Software systems are often referred to
as some of the most complex things
ever created by humans. Software developers around the world are seeking
ways to constantly improve these complex systems over time.
Dr. Gail Murphy's software engineering research is focused on software
evolution, with the goal of helping
developers build systems that evolve
more easily and efficiently. With funding from various sources including the
BC Advanced Systems Institute, NSERC
and Xerox PARC, she is working on
two main research themes that will help
the evolutionary process along.
New software design techniques
"My two main areas are new software
design techniques to help developers
build systems that can be changed more
effectively, and new software analysis
and visualization techniques to help
developers reduce the cost of changing
existing systems," says Murphy, who
joined UBC's Department of Computer
Science in August, 1996.
Techniques that allow developers to
tailor the use of a tool to handle task-
specific information from very large
systems are one of her specialities. One
of the techniques she developed during
her dissertation research at the University of Washington was used by a
Microsoft developer to do an experimental re-engineering of Excel that
consisted of isolating and extracting
software components from the existing
million lines of code.
Improving performance
"Some of the changes I'm interested in
helping developers make are to improve
the performance of the system (e.g. to
run faster using less memory), and to
increase the functionality of the system," she says. Industry is very
interested in her research.
Object Technology International
(OTI) of Victoria wasted no time in
establishing a joint project with
Murphy. "We're working together on
ways to visualize information collected
from the dynamic execution of object-
Gail Murphy is working on new software design techniques.
oriented systems," Murphy says.
OTI's main products are software
engineering environments, called
VisualAge for Smalltalk and VisualAge
for Java. Bjorn Freeman-Benson of OTI
says the joint project involves visualization of the software's attributes, such as
how it runs and how much memory it
"We're studying the information that
people actually want to see and how
they want to see it, and then experimentally proving whether these things are
useful. There's been pretty pictures on
screen before, but nobody's actually
done it."
Freeman-Benson says the time was
right to collaborate with UBC, and OTI
stands to benefit in a couple of ways.
"Since we are a BC company, I thought
now would be a good time to collaborate, and it all fits together naturally. If
we succeed, we'll have something that
we can build into our products. Also,
working with Gail and her students lets
us screen potential employees."
Evaluating design & implementation
Murphy also has a project with the
Xerox Palo Alto Research Center
(PARC) that involves evaluating
software design and implementation
techniques. "Often new design
approaches are introduced that claim to
enable the development of software and
that will incur less maintenance costs,
but there are not many defined protocols
to test these approaches. We're trying to
apply case-study research methods to
evaluate whether new techniques and
tools will actually help an organization."
Leveraging research
To do so, Murphy and colleagues at
PARC are trying to leverage research
that's been done in the human-computer
interaction area, which Murphy says has
not yet been extensively applied in
software engineering research.
One of the benefits of combining
technique and tool development with
better evaluation approaches is that
good tools and techniques might be
adopted by software developers sooner.
The evaluation can also bring to light
adaptations of the tools and techniques
that might ease their adoption.
"Many existing approaches in both
software design and software analysis
tend to be brittle and difficult to use.
We're looking at more flexible ways to
help developers cope with the complexity they face in developing and evolving
software systems." Gail Murphy can be
reached at murphy@cs.ubc.ca. ■
Focus Fall 1997 New diagnostic tools designed to help
hardware and software developers
Dr. Greg Bond's work is all about
developing tools for development. And
the Assistant Professor in Electrical and
Computer Engineering at UBC is seeking an industry partner for a new
diagnostic project that could save industries hours or days of downtime.
Intelligent software debugger
Bond, an expert in diagnosis, is developing a range of tools for use by
developers of computer software and
hardware. He receives research funding
from NSERC and a secondary grant
from the BC Ministry of Employment
and Investment. Bond's primary project
these days is an intelligent software
debugger that works by guiding software programmers through the
debugging process and suggesting tests
to perform to localize bugs. Debugging
has traditionally been a time-consuming
process for software developers.
"Debugging can take a long time,
particularly if the software has been
written by someone else. Most companies change software incrementally over
time, so other programmers usually
have to come in and mop up the problems after the bugs are reported. It's a
common problem with multi-version
software," he notes.
Another common problem is feature
interaction, which occurs when new
features added to old legacy code have
unforeseen interactions with existing
code. These are difficult to track down,
even for high-end programmers for
whom the new debugger is being developed, says Bond.
BC's growing software industry
Bond says his work in diagnosis is pertinent to British Columbia because of the
province's well-established industrial
and resource base and its many large
production systems. He also notes that
smaller companies are also making their
presence felt in the area of software
"Vancouver is really burgeoning in
this area. There are a lot of small companies that are doing quite well and are
Greg Bond with a Lego model of a manufacturing system to test both the Hybrid
Scope and the factory diagnosis project.
only going to get bigger, and we're
starting to see more willingness to do
research and development at this level."
High-end systems developers will be
interested in another of Bond's projects:
a hybrid scope that will monitor and
display the activity of a system's hardware and software in real-time. Bond
Debugging has traditionally
been a time-consuming
process for developers.
describes it as a natural extension of the
oscilloscope, which electrical engineers
use to monitor electrical signals.
"It's a technique for correlating the
activity of the software with various
signals coming from the hardware,
allowing you to see the entire system's
behaviour in one display," he says.
"Essentially it's a virtual oscilloscope
on your computer that also monitors
software. It's useful for developing realtime embedded systems, when it's
important to figure out what the software is doing and what the hardware is
doing, because at some point you have
to bring the pieces together and test the
integrated unit."
Bond joined UBC in 1994, after
completing a Masters and PhD in Systems and Computer Engineering at
Carleton University in Ottawa, and a
Bachelors in Electrical Engineering at
the University of Calgary.
On-site factory diagnosis
Along with his current research, Bond
is seeking an industry partner for a new
project in on-site factory diagnosis
using aspects of artificial intelligence.
The early objective of this work is to
provide automated assistance for localizing faults on assembly lines and in
other large-scale manufacturing operations. Shutdowns in such plants—in a
pulp mill, for example—can be costly in
terms of lost production time.
"Logs come in, are cut up and processed, but at any point in that line a
problem can happen, and it's usually
not apparent what the problem is, and it
takes some time to get things running
again," says Bond. "The idea is to monitor information from sensors scattered
about the factory floor, localizing faults
by taking the information and considering it alongside a model of what the
system should be doing, and to then try
to localize the errors."
Greg Bond can be reached at
(604) 822-0899 or bond@ee.ubc.ca ■
Focus Fall 1997 Parallel applications research combines
computer power to solve problems
Parallel applications—the use of more
than one computer to solve a problem—
are at the core of Alan Wagner's current
research projects. A recent grant from
NSERC will be used to buy the hardware needed to closely examine the two
biggest problems associated with parallel applications: ease of use and stable
Parallel computing
"Currently parallel computing is difficult to use because it makes programs
harder to port and applications more
difficult to change, so people are happier just to wait for faster machines.
Performance is also an issue—you need
to know that you can depend on it and
fix problems as they happen," says
Wagner, who joined UBC's Department
of Computer Science in 1987.
Wagner has worked on performance
models for restricted classes of parallel
programs through a 75 processor
transputer network for the past seven
years, and hopes to port much of that
work onto the new computing cluster
that the NSERC grant is funding. His
own research funding comes from an
NSERC operating grant.
Transputers were unique in that each
processor had four on-chip communications links allowing them to be directly
connected to each other. The computing
cluster is a 16-node Pentium-based
machine, interconnected by a 1.25-
gigabits-per-second point-to-point
Myrinet network which is about a
Weather forecasting and
aerodynamic simulations
traditionally need speed
because so much number
crunching is involved.
hundred times faster than, for example,
Ethernets. This kind of speed opens up
new research possibilities.
"This processor will be fast enough
to make it very interesting, allowing us
to create system kernels to support
parallel applications in many areas,"
Wagner says. "It's usually fairly easy to
improve speed if you're only dealing
with a few machines, but when you
start to scale that up it becomes more
Numerical applications are prime
examples of parallel computing. Areas
such as weather forecasting and aerodynamic simulations traditionally need
speed because so much number crunching is involved. And networking
applications, such as video servers and
web servers, can also benefit from the
added computing power and bandwidth
available from a parallel machine.
These applications have to process
large amounts of data and many single
computers lack the required power.
"Why not spread that across several
machines?" asks Wagner.
The performance of microprocessors
and interconnections networks is increasing so quickly these days it is an
exciting time to be doing this type of
Active networking
With colleagues Gerald Neufeld, Mike
Feeley and Norm Hutchinson (all professors in Computer Science), Wagner
is examining active networking which
would allow messages to carry data and
contain programs which can be executed as they travel inside the network.
"Messages would become active
entities that would make decisions on
their own based on what's happening in
the local network. It might be completely transparent to the end user," says
Wagner. "An analogy is getting into
your car and driving to work. Your car
is a separate entity that can take any
path to get there, adapting to traffic
situations as they arise.
Intelligent messaging
"In most networks that isn't possible:
you send a message and give it a path
and that's the only path it can take. One
goal of active networking is to allow
messages to be more intelligent, letting
them adapt to local conditions such as
congestion or imprecise knowledge."
Alan Wagner received a PhD in
Computing Science from the University
of Toronto in 1987. He can be reached
at wagner@cs.ubc.ca ■
Alan Wagner is researching the challenges of parallel computing.
Focus Fall 1997 Predicting and controlling noise
Murray Hodgson has an ear for
sound—it shows in his perfectly
pronounced French. But Hodgson, a
Mechanical Engineering Professor with
a cross appointment in Occupational
Hygiene, is concerned with noise. A
specialist in acoustics with a multi-
disciplinary approach to sound and
noise control, Hodgson's work focuses
on the modelling and prediction of
sound in enclosed spaces—the noise in
a factory, for example, or the sounds
reverberating in an aircraft's fuselage.
Sound and virtual reality
In the workplace, noise is an occupational hazard and can be harmful. Using
advanced techniques such as virtual
reality, Hodgson is simulating the
acoustic environments of workplaces so
that noise levels can be studied and
controlled. He is currently working on a
project using auralization, the acoustical
version of virtual reality, and he hopes
to make it a commercially viable one.
Auralization simulates acoustical
environments through computers,
sound-field prediction algorithms such
as ray tracing, and digital signal
processing techniques.
PlantNoise software
PlantNoise, the software program which
Hodgson created, predicts noise levels
in industrial workspaces. The program
projects an on-screen floor plan of the
plant and allows users to walk through
the room and experience the noise generated in each area via headphones. The
program plots noise contour maps
which are a valuable aid in planning
noise control measures and in improving working conditions.
"PlantNoise gives an invaluable
subjective impression of the room
noise," says Hodgson. "It can give a
sense of the space and the volume and
Murray Hodgson in an anechoic chamber. Hodgson is an acoustician.
directionality of sounds in that space.
And it gives an idea of what workers are
subjected to without noise control measures in place."
Hearing study
Hodgson is also using auralization in a
study with UBC's School of Audiology
that aims to understand why elderly
people—even those with good hearing—have more trouble identifying
speech in certain types of rooms than
young people. The technique is being
used to simulate those acoustic environments in which the elderly experience
particular difficulty: restaurants, conference rooms and such.
In a collaborative software project
with an architectural lighting firm,
Hodgson is designing an auralization
component that will predict acoustic
environments given the materials used
in construction. This will complement
the lighting side of the program which
will be used to model and predict light
Noise control materials
These projects highlight another theme
of Hodgson's work: predicting the noise
control properties of various materials,
and optimizing their use in noise control. In a project with the British
Columbia Ministry of Highways and
Transportation, he was asked to look at
the design of roadside sound barriers.
Using scale-modelling techniques,
Hodgson examined the two common
types of barriers, walls and earth berms,
by themselves and in combination to see
which was most effective.
And in the demanding aerospace
field, he is looking at glass fibre materials and their noise control properties
within aircraft fuselages and engine
assemblies. "It is an obvious application
of sound prediction and measurement
techniques," says Hodgson.
He is looking to increase his contacts
in the aerospace sector, and has had
discussions with several manufacturers
interested in his research. Murray
Hodgson is athodgson@mech.ubc.ca ■
Productivity up, emissions down
"The toughest challenge was to isolate ourselves from the existing design
and come up with a unique solution to
the problem, which has existed in the
industry for thirty years. The replacement drum had to fit into the constraints
of the existing washer," says Mark
Tayler, Manager of Engineering &
continued from front page
Production Control at Tristar, which
has some $20-$23 million in annual
sales and almost 140 employees.
The design problem was simulated
and experimental testing was applied to
ensure accuracy of the simulation data.
New designs and solutions were then
tested on a full-scale prototype model,
the Domtar mill in Red Rock, ON,
which was nearly shut down several
years ago, but now reports no forced
shutdown time in the two years since
the prototype was installed. Productivity
is up and many jobs were saved in the
please turn to back page
Focus Fall 1997 PASSING NOTES
Hughes Aircraft Tour
CICSR faculty and students joined the
Vancouver chapter of INCOSE for a
tour of the Hughes Aircraft Test and
Integration Facility in Richmond this
past spring. Participants were given a
demonstration of the Integrated Tower
Terminal System for air traffic control,
and also saw test facilities for other air
traffic systems under development by
Hughes, including CAATS (the Canadian Automated Air Traffic System).
In collaboration with Rational Software Corp. and Hughes Aircraft, CICSR
co-sponsored a one-day intensive course
on "System Architecting," taught by
Mark Maier of the University of Alabama at Huntsville. This course, held
April 25 in the CICSR boardroom, was
organized by the Vancouver chapter of
INCOSE. It attracted 30 participants,
including industrial representatives
from Hughes Aircraft, MacDonald
Dettwiler, Boeing, Scientific Atlanta,
CDC, Rational, and Dynapro.
Rabab Ward, CICSR director, had
the opportunity to welcome the course
participants to UBC and express interest
in research collaboration between
CICSR researchers and industry. CICSR
and INCOSE look forward to more
opportunities modelled upon this event
which increase contact between university researchers and local industry. ■
YWCA Award for Maria Klawe
Computer Science's Maria Klawe, VP
of Student and Academic Services,
received the YWCA Women of Distinc- |
tion Award for Science and Technology
this past spring. The award recognizes a
"contribution, through research or application, in scientific-related fields, or
technological advancement and the
expansion of women's participation
and opportunities in these fields." ■
Multimedia Short Course
CICSR hosted its first one-day Advanced Technology Short Course on
June 27. The course—on Multimedia
Technologies—presented three speakers: Mark Smith from Georgia Institute
of Technology on Multimedia Signal
Processing; Son Vuong from CS on
Multimedia Communication via the
Internet and ATM; and Faouzi
Kossentini of ECE on Multimedia
Signal Compression Standards. Almost
30 people attended with an even split
between industry and university
attendees. There are hopes for another
short course on multimedia in December, but no details yet. ■
Tillquist Joins CICSR
CICSR welcomes a new
associate member, John
Tillquist of the MIS division of the Faculty of
Commerce. His research
interests are the organizational, institutional and
societal analyses of information technologies,
telecommunications, IT
policy, computer-supported
collaborative work, and
IT-enabled transformations of work.
Tillquist received his PhD from the
University of California, Irvine, and
worked with AT&T, US West and GTE-
Data Services before joining UBC. ■
New Dean and Department Head
Michael Isaacson has been appointed
Dean of Applied Science. He is a Professor of Civil Engineering and was
Head of the Department of Civil Engineering from 1992 to 1997. Isaacson
first joined UBC in 1976. He received
his doctorate from the University of
Cambridge for research on wave forces,
and was subsequently employed in
ocean engineering design and research.
And Michael Davies is the new Head of
the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He has been at UBC
since 1966 and Associate Dean of Applied Science since 1985. ■
Teaching Awards for Two
ECE Professor Peter Lawrence was
one of two recipients of the 1997 Teaching Prize for the Faculty of Applied
Science. Lawrence has been a leader in
the introduction and teaching of computer instrumentation systems in
engineering at UBC. He co-developed a
course which introduces students of all
engineering disciplines to this important
industrial component. Recently he developed the electrical engineering
component for the new Wood Products
Manufacturing Program. His great enthusiasm and practical approach has
helped many students understand industrial processes and problems.
Craig Boutilier of Computer Science was one of three winners of a
Faculty of Science Teaching Award.
"I'm very pleased and honoured to have
received the award," says Boutilier.
"The quality of teaching in our department is very good (I'm not the first
winner from CS!)" He was
also awarded a Killam
Faculty Research Fellowship for his sabbatical in
the fall of last year. ■
High-Speed Machining
Technology Seminar
On May 25th, BC aerospace manufacturers
attended a half-day High-
John Tillquist sPeed Machining seminar
at the Manufacturing Automation Laboratory of Yusuf Altintas
(ME). About 25 people attended, representing more than 15 companies in the
Vancouver area. Altintas outlined the
field of high-speed machining and the
associated engineering and research
problems. He also introduced and dem-
| onstrated systems developed at UBC.
Boeing research engineer Jan Jeppsson
then talked about intelligent high-speed
1 machining technology developed and
used at Boeing plants. The seminar was
a success with two outcomes: a graduate
student was hired by AVCORP, and a
consortium of BC aerospace manufacturers was initiated for high-speed
machining research at UBC. ■
Visitors to CICSR
Delegations from Peru and Russia recently visited CICSR. On April 30,
Dr. Antonio Mabres, Rector of
Universidad de Piura, Peru, came to
discuss possible future collaborations.
And on May 6, CICSR welcomed
Dr. Nikolay Borisov, Director of the
Centre for Advanced Professional Education at St. Petersburg State
University. Borisov is in Canada as a
recipient of a Yeltsin Democracy Fellowship (YDF). The YDF brings
progressive Russians to Canada for
education and training programs in their
fields of specialization. Borisov focuses
on continuing education and information technologies. ■
Focus Fall 1997 Productivity up, emissions down
continued from page 6
Tayler says the project's objectives
were achieved due to the nature of the
partnership between Tristar and UBC.
"We established right away that we
were teaming up to solve this because
we weren't sure of the nature of the
problem. We agreed to work as a team,
rather than as a contractor and vendor."
Tayler agrees that the partnership
allowed each to bring their unique
strengths to the project table and shop
floor. "We see the UBC Mechanical
Finite Element lab as a partner and as an
extension of Tristar's engineering capability," he says. The design was granted
a US patent in December 1996, paving
the way for Canada to become a leading
supplier of pressure washer drums to the
world's pulp mills. Potlatch Corporation
in Lewiston, Idaho, has purchased two
of the new drums, which were shipped
in June of this year.
Tristar is also marketing the product
internationally, and patents have been
applied for in Europe. A huge market
has been created as governments tighten
environmental controls for pulp mills,
many of which use vacuum washer drums
that produce significant air emissions.
"Pressure washer drums have essentially no air emissions," says Tayler, "so
that was part of the lure of finding a
solution. There are thousands of vacuum
washer drums throughout the world, so
it's a huge market as a retrofit technology." Mohamed Gadala can be reached
atgadala@mech.ubc.ca. ■
Distinguished Lecture Series, 1997/98
The Distinguished Lecture Series enters its ninth year with another exciting lineup of lecturers and topics. Join us. All talks will be held from 4:00 to 5:30 pm in
room 208 of the CICSR/CS Building, 2366 Main Mall, UBC, and there is no charge.
1. Robots That Learn
George A. Bekey,
Professor of Computer
Science and Director of
the Robotics Research
Lab at the University of
Southern California,
Los Angeles.
September 18, 1997
2. Software
Are We There Yet?
Philippe Kruchten,
Director of Process
Development, Rational
Software Corp.,
Vancouver, BC.
October 23, 1997
3. Image Sequence
Primitives for
Advanced Video
Coding: Extraction
and Representation
Eric Dubois, Professor,
Institut national de la
recherche scientifique,
Universite du Quebec,
research centre.
November 20, 1997
The UBC Centre for Integrated Computer Systems Research (CICSR) is an interdepartmental
research organization made up of computer-related research faculty members in the
Departments of Computer Science, Electrical and Computer Engineering and Mechanical
Engineering. Currently there are more than 70 CICSR researchers who direct over 300
graduate students and collaborate with dozens of industrial firms in areas such as robotics,
artificial intelligence, communications, VLSI design, imaging, and industrial automation.
Return Address
289-2366 Main Mall
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4
4. Observing the Earth
from Space: A Global
Information System
John MacDonald,
Chairman, MacDonald
Dettwiler & Associates,
Richmond, BC.
January 22, 1998
5. Colour Image
Processing and
Anastasios N.
Professor, Department of
Electrical and Computer
Engineering at the University of Toronto.
February 5, 1998
6. Trends in High-
Speed NC Technology
Giinter Pritschow,
Director of the Institute
of Control Technology
for Machine Tools and
Manufacturing Units
(ISW) at the Technical
University of Stuttgart
in Germany.
March 12, 1998
CICSR FOCUS is published twice a year.
WRITERS: Jeff McDonald, Will Knight
PHOTOGRAPHY: Media Services, UBC
OFFICE: 289-2366 Main Mall
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1Z4
Tel: (604) 822-6894 Fax: (604) 822-9013
E-mail: cicsrinfo@cicsr.ubc.ca
CONTACT: Linda Sewell


Citation Scheme:


Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics



Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            async >
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:


Related Items