I completed two coop work-terms with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) at their Bells Corners campus in Ottawa. I worked with “The Modelling Group” at the time – a group that specializes in computational fluid dynamics (CFD). This was both a challenging and rewarding experience as it tied together many fundamental theories reviewed in my first two years at University. It was a great experience to learn the practicality of the theory and seeing its many uses in real world experiences.
During the course of my two work-terms, I was tasked with:
- Evaluating an open-source computational fluid dynamics toolkit called OpenFOAM to determine its usefulness for the group;
- Solving engineering problems using fundamentals of heat transfer, mass transfer and knowledge of combustion;
- Studying combustion models using various CFD tools and software; and
- Communicating effectively with a CFD company to help find software bugs.
My experience with “The Modelling Group” and NRCan allowed me to:
- Gain experience using SolidWorks, ANSYS CFX, ICEM CFD, TecPlot360, ANSYS Fluent, and OpenFOAM;
- Develop skills to work effectively in small groups;
- Hone my problem solving skills; and
- Apply theoretical concepts to practical, real-life problems.
Near the end of my second work-term with NRCan, I was nominated by my team for the Aileen Proudfoot Award. I was shortlisted, along with 4 other students, and was required to make a short presentation to the executive team on the achievements and contributions I made to NRCan during my work-term.