(PhD, P.Eng, IWE)
Welding Science & Engineering
Simulation Tech. Digital-Twins
Machine Learning in Manufacturing
Fracture Mechanics & FFS
The prestigious Sharif University of Technology in my country of origin, Iran, conferred my engineering degree (BSc) and graduate degree (MSc) in material science and engineering with a major in metal forming and welding engineering, respectively. My master’s thesis was in close collaboration with Peugeot, the French automotive manufacturer. It resulted in an immediate Research and Development (R&D) job in the automotive manufacturing at Industrial & Scientific Services (ISS) Company – a division of Supplying Automotive Parts Company (SAPCO) in Iran during the flourishing time of the automotive sector in the region. Many years of work experience in this sector enhanced my practical engineering skills and extended my understanding of project flow at supply chains of various sizes and complexities. I had the remarkable opportunity to present my work both nationally and internationally.
One of my most fortunate opportunities was meeting with the distinguished research professor Dr. John Goldak in a technical conference in Graz (Austria). This meeting led to a Ph.D. position at Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada) under his supervision. Meanwhile, I want to thank Dr. Amirhossein Kokabi (my master's degree supervisor) for his encouragement and partial financial support for me to participate in that event. John Goldak is internationally renowned for life-long achievements in computational modeling, and he is a pioneer in computational welding mechanics (CWM) discipline. I spent four golden years of my learning cycle with him, so professional that I owe my knowledge and skill to him. More importantly, I owe him my professional vision that leads my steps through my professional life. My time with him went beyond the academic development, and I experienced actual workflow and partnership between academia and industry in his dynamic company Goldak Technologies Inc (GTi). Out of hundreds of fellows he supervised, I had the honour of being among the few who contributed an innovative computational framework for integrating Computational Mechanics (CM) in the design, control, and optimization of engineering structures. I received the highest Ph.D. research grant at Carleton University for every year of my study. A passion for research was highlighted in my Ph.D. thesis defence by the board of examination. I was nominated for the university medal award for the best Ph.D. thesis of the year. My hard work helped me finishing my Ph.D. early and received an immediate prominent PostDoc fund (FedDev-Ontario) for working at the University of Ottawa.
At the University of Ottawa, I joined the outstanding fracture group led by Dr. Arnaud Weck for hands-on computational and experimental fracture mechanics work. I developed expertise and gained significant experience in fracture mechanics, fatigue performance, creep life assessment, and many practical methods, including SEM (Scanning Electron Microscopy), 3D Tomography, DIC (Digital Image Correlation), and femtosecond laser machining for extracting micron-size samples. I learned practical fracture mechanics applications in working with industrial partners, NRC (National Research Council Canada) and LPTi (Life Prediction Technologies Inc). I became a mentor in support of projects in the fracture group. During his parental leave, I substituted Dr. Weck by leading ten graduates, undergraduates, and coops students in his fracture group.
Later, I won the esteemed national Canadian scholarship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC-PDF) and started working at the University of British Columbia with Professor Rizhi Wang, the president of the Canadian Biomaterials Society, and on multi-scale fracture analysis in the bioengineering field.
A flashback to my career path, my early-stage career started in the automotive industry’s innovation and development after a successful internship in Shetabkar Company – a steering system and suspension manufacturer in Iran. I had a short pause in my career to complete my master's degree. I then continued working for many years in different roles and promotions in the automotive sectors, including the engineering department manager. As my expertise grew, my career was drawn in a broader application of my proficiency, i.e. high-profile computational engineering and modern data analysis for manufacturing, welding distortion control, service failures and life prediction in susceptible structure and processes. During my single time with John Goldak, I developed an outstanding excellency in the science of computational engineering and data processing. More importantly, I learned how to use this science to bridge this knowledge to industrial clients' solutions during many business-scale projects in GTi.
During eight years in gorgeous Ottawa, I enjoyed distinct working opportunities that I was given to experience with exceptional projects where many hesitated to take the challenge. I collected credentials and requirements of professional engineering license (Ontario and later in BC) to practice as a PEng as well as possessing an impressive track record of industrial work with John Deere, DND, AECL, NRC, CWB, GTi, LPTi and many more. My family and I recall many good memories from our time in Ottawa.
A new chapter of my career started when I met SKC engineering president in Vancouver, BC. I co-delivered a post-conference workshop with John Goldak on modeling and simulation, where I met Dr. Mathew Smith. We opened the discussion of business development on high-end services using modeling and simulation especially in a competitive environment like Vancouver. A few months later, my family prepared our move to Beautiful Vancouver, where I joined the eminent SKC Engineering. Thanks to Mathew Smith’s trust in me, I was given a chance to examine my entrepreneurship skills and talents to establish a business out of my field of expertise. A unique opportunity that no one can miss it toward a successful career path. My first major project came shortly after starting my business unit with two clients; Babcock Canada Inc and Canada Department of National Defence. That project evolved into a critical project for those clients. During the project, several challenges made my team a professional Fitness-For-Service provider for providing complex technical solutions under tight delivery time. I started growing my team by hiring and training people. A good reputation of my team led us to become a Canadian representative of the Zencrack software suite for fracture mechanics problems, and we are now recognized as an advanced FFS provider through API579 and BS 7910 standards – a core competency that highlights in my work experience.
After some years, SKC Engineering was acquired by Applus+, joining an international group of companies headquartered in Spain that operates in more than 70 countries and employs 20,000 people. This exciting expansion offered me many benefits, including expanding service offerings in a wider geographic beyond the Vancouver region and a collaboration opportunity with hundreds of other Applus+ offices around the world. As a result, we received more projects from different parts of Canada, the United States, Europe, and India.
Simultaneously, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) started booming everywhere and became so pervasive that we use it many times in our work without knowing it. Such a fast-paced emerging technology recalled my mathematical talents in data processing to carry my team and projects towards AI and ML applications in my field. I secured a development fund from Canada's Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) to develop two primary ML-based manufacturing tools. High-performance computing (HPC) enables engineers to perform data-driven engineering where a computer can act without being explicitly programmed. However, data is at the heart of the matter. We hired AI experts and developed a signature hybrid digital twin platform that combines simulation tools with machine learning algorithms for data-driven prediction using limited data for engineering applications (in contrast to typical big data). Our approach attracted a significant client, and we develop businesses for more projects to provide digital twins in manufacturing.
Learning advances when you train others. Passion for training and educating others on my expertise is part of my fabric. While continuously expanding my engineering experience through my career path, I am proud of my several educator roles in academia and industry. The most highlighted one is my signature blended course on weld modeling and simulation, which is the only course available in Canada for training our engineers with the skill of computational weld engineering. I initially developed this course at the University of Ottawa, where I received excellent evaluations from both audiences and the department. My class was highlighted in the Canadian Welding Association Journal and made me a lifetime educator member of the Canadian Welding Association, which I profoundly proud of. After moving to Vancouver, I was given an opportunity by the UBC's Materials Dept to become an adjunct professor to keep delivering my signature course to Materials Engineering students and co-conducting research with renowned faculties (Thanks to Dr. Warren Poole).
To wrap up, If learning is a lifelong journey, my academic path through different universities has given me a solid background that has been enriched along my career path and experience in great companies - leaders of innovation and motion; and launched a confidence to move forward the road for the success that I have experienced in the professional world and enthused me to make a meaningful contribution.
Last but most of all, I take this opportunity to express my profound gratitude to those who made it all possible, my wife, Sharareh, for her tremendous encouragement and support in all aspects of my life. Her role is indispensable and cherished in my achievements. My Daughters Jana and Viana, who defines my life and future - the most joyful part. I am indebted forever to my parents, Pouran and Hashem, for their unconditional support. Also, I would like to thank my parents-in-law Zahra and Hossein, my brothers Mazyar and Kamyar, and sister-in-law Shahrzad for their moral support. There is nothing better than the support of a great family to gain success.