Recent News

The University of Manitoba has been hosting the Open Journal System (OJS) free of charge since 2009 to help with the online review process.  Over the past six years, I have customized and updated most of the pages in the OJS system to help with the review process of papers submitted to our journal.   

        The entire collection of past journal papers are now available online and can be accessed here: http://www.csbe-scgab.ca/publications/cbe-journal/browse.   The scanned papers were Optical Character Recognition (OCR) processed to enable them to be searched using keywords.

        Section Editors have management level access to the Open Journal System (OJS).  When papers are submitted to the journal, the Section Editors assign it to three other persons on the Editorial Board to review the paper through the OJS online system.  Those assigned the paper can either review the paper themselves or get it reviewed via a personal email to one of their colleagues who are more likely to oblige to review in a timely manner.  Each person serving on the Editorial Board is expected to review about 6 to 8 papers in a year.  If you are interested in serving on the Editorial Board, please contact the Section Editors who are listed below:

  1. Soil and Water Systems Engineering:  Dr. Mano Krishnapillai, Memorial University, NL
  2. Machinery Systems Engineering:  Dr. Hubert Landry, PAMI, SK
  3. Bioprocessing Systems Engineering:  Dr. Valerie Orsat, McGill
  4. Biological Systems Engineering:  Dr Stefan Cenkowski, UofMb
  5. Building Systems Engineering: Dr. Qiang Zhang, UofMb
  6. Waste Management Engineering: Dr. Grant Clark, McGill
  7. Information Systems Engineering: Dr. Suresh Neethirajan, Guelph
  8. Renewable Energy:  Dr. Amit Kumar, UofAlberta

        The Section Editors will also serve as the Technical Committee of our Society to help with the evaluation of the conference paper abstracts, formulate Technical Sessions, and solicit worthy papers for submission to the CBE journal.  Beginning in 2014, the processing time lines for the accepted papers have been published.  To further improve the timeliness of the publication of manuscripts the Council has unanimously voted to approve the following incentive policy:

(a)  Reward each reviewer with a credit of $50/manuscript towards page charges of their own manuscripts published in the CBEJ. A credit will be given for a review of acceptable quality and detail, as determined by the Section Editor, received within THREE weeks of assignment of the review. The total credits used by a reviewer towards publication of a single manuscript shall not exceed $100. The credit must be used within two years of being awarded. 


(b)  Reward each reviewer with a credit of $50/manuscript towards registration in the CSBE-SCGAB Annual Conference. A credit will be given for a review of acceptable quality and detail, as determined by the Section Editor, received within THREE weeks of assignment of the review. The total credits used by a reviewer towards registration at a given conference shall not exceed $100. The credit must be used within two years of being awarded.

        In 2012, the Canadian Biosystems Engineering Journal was registered with CrossRef (www.crossref.org) as a member organization allowing the assigning of Digital Object Identifier (DOI) to a paper published in our journal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_object_identifier). I have used the following system to identify our papers.  The http://dx.doi.org is the DOI resolving website. The number 10.7451 identifies our journal.  Following that, I have used CBE.year.volume.first_page_number as the format to identify each paper.  When you type this URL into a web browser, it will take you directly to the .pdf file of the paper.  Therefore, please publicize your papers by providing the DOI link of your paper instead of sending the .pdf file of your paper.  This will help properly register the access count with the DOI system.   By providing the DOI link you can help improve the impact factor of our journal.   

        I thank all the authors, reviewers, and the Section Editors for their support in making the publication of our journal possible.  We need your continued support in a timely manner to make our journal a successful vehicle for disseminating your research.  

Friday, 12 June 2015 13:34

Annual Report from Webmaster 2014-2015

Revamped Awards Section

The Awards section (http://www.csbe-scgab.ca/csbe/awards) was redesigned to give more exposure to award recipients. On the main page, a general introduction is shown with a dynamic mosaic of the 2014 Award recipients. On the left, a first menu links visitors to each award description and form with full citations for recipients of this award. A second menu was also set to show award recipients by year. At this time, only 2014 and 2013 awards recipients were extracted from the booklet, previous years will come shortly.

CSBE LinkedIn group moves with EIC

For the benefit of our members, the CSBE LinkedIn group will join the LinkedIn network of the Engineering Institute of Canada (EIC). A new sub-group has been established for this purpose within the EIC LinkedIn network. The current CSBE LinkedIn group has been closed on September 1st 2014. We invite all current CSBE LinkedIn members to join this new group.

Reorganization of the CSBE LinkedIn group in this way will give us access to a wider network of professionals, diversified employment offers and recent discussions in the field of engineering. The EIC Linked network has 570 members across Canada and includes LinkedIn sub-groups for the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering and Canadian Engineering Management. If you do not yet have a LinkedIn account, take advantage of this opportunity to create one.

Notice to current members of our LinkedIn group: your LinkedIn membership was not automatically transferred to the new group, which may explain you didn’t receive the discussions and comments posted there. You must join the group as a new member by following this link:


Annual General Meeting 2015 in Edmonton

I was involved in the meeting organization at different levels:

  • Installation and configuration of a paper submission system (OpenConf).
  • Configuration and maintenance of an event section on our website (http://www.csbe-scgab.ca/edmonton2015).
  • Configuration of the registration system with online payment.
  • Creation and configuration of a Paypal account to accept online and onsite payment.
  • Sending of several (7) emails to current and past members (list of about 1000 emails) through our newsletter platform.
  • Training of members of the committee for the use of the paper submission system and registration management (database, reports, Paypal).
  • Participation in committee’s meetings.
  • French translation of the Award citations.

Newsletters and Notices to members

A total of 9 newsletters and notices were sent between July 2014 and June 2015 to a list of 665 members. The opening rate is about 30 %.

  1. Invitation to submit your paper to CBE Journal (August 2014, AGM 2014 Canadian authors only (255))
  2. AGM 2014 special issue (August 2014)
  3. Summer Perspectives Newsletter (September 2014)
  4. ASABE 1st Climate Change Symposium: Extended Deadline (October 2015)
  5. Call for Nomination - CSBE Awards 2015 (November 2014)
  6. Fall Perspectives Newsletter (December 2014)
  7. Happy holidays from CSBE/SCGAB (December 2014)
  8. Winter Perspectives Newsletter (March 2015)
  9. Spring Perspectives Newsletter (June 2015)

Job posting

Careers section on our website was more active this year with 8 jobs posting compared to 4 in 2012-2013 and only 3 in 2013-2014. This mean our website (and Society) is a valuable place to announce opened positions and it is growing recognition of recruitment agencies.

Website statistics report

Between July 2014 and June 2015, CSBE website was visited 14578 times (1215 monthly average) with 39290 pages viewed. An average of 2.70 pages per visit with duration of about 2:29 minutes was met, which is 5% more than the previous year (about 13858 visits).

  • The audience was mainly English (74 %) and French (8 %) and came from Canada (53 %), USA (12 %), India (3 %) and many other countries (Brazil, China, Germany, Philippines…). 
  • Main traffic came from organic search (56 %), followed by direct access (24 %), site referral (18 %) and social media (1.7%).
  • Main pages/sections viewed were the home page, Edmonton 2015 portal, Publications, ASABE/CSBE joint meeting news, CBE Journal information page, Join CSBE, and Careers page.
  • Visitor browser preferences were Chrome (48 %), Internet Explorer (21 %), Firefox (18 %), and Safari (9 %). 89 % of visits were from a desktop/laptop station while 11 % were on mobile (phone and tablet). Last year, 8 % were on mobile devices.
  • Social media. About 242 visits were referred from social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Research Gate…)

2015 Treasurers report for the fiscal year ended December 31 2014 and 2015 budget with 2016 projections

Financially CSBE has sufficient cash inflow and savings to carry on for the foreseeable future.

The 2015 audit shows that the year ended with  an excess of revenue over expenditure of $29,631.  This means that a number of areas were managed extremely well:  The journal, web site, office and savings investment.  There is also an element of luck - the currency conversion of our dues from ASABE is not managed brilliantly yielding some unexpected yields on US$ to CAD$ conversions as they fixed the rate above market in a falling conversion rate environment – this often works against us when the CAD $ is rising.

Also several programs for students were significantly underspent- regional directors need to get moving there is some reasonable money available for student events.

Notable areas of  increased funding for 2015  are:   Webpage software licensing renewal – a 3 year cycle, and a projected web page rebuild for 2016. And new for this year is a journal reviewers incentive to encourage timely reviews of journal articles with the goal of making the CSBE Journal a more attractive site to publish research papers.  The CSBE foundation has implemented a program to fund student awards winners to travel to the AGM.

CIGR and AIC fees are being paid the auditor however has recorded them under a different heading.
Council is reviewing the AIC membership and fees.

Net assets at the end of 2014 were $175,825 an increase year over year of $29,631 up from a low of $139,885 in 2013

End of year combined cash was $51.819 with an additional $102.536 in a long term securities portfolio at BMO Nesbitt Burns. The current portfolio value $105,470, pointing to a hoped for 7% per annum yield.

The 2015 budget with the 2016 projections can be downloaded here.

Download the 2014 Audit.

Another year has gone by, and it seems to have all happened in a blur. Wow, what a year it’s been! Not to mention, yours truly and his gang of cohorts continue to plug away towards what we hope will be a sweet ending to the year. Yes, Alberta (Edmonton) is proud to be hosting the 2015 CSBE/SCGAB ANNUAL CONFERENCE in July, along with its AGM and Awards Ceremonies!

  • 2015 CSBE/SCGAB Conference - Local Arrangements Committee (LAC)

A rallying call for volunteers to help plan and host the 2015 conference went out to provincial members of CSBE/SCGAB and non-members in September last year. The LAC boasted a total of 20 participants including, LAC Chair and CSBE/SCGAB member - Rick Atkins, CSBE/SCGAB Society Manager - John Feddes, VP Technical - Suresh Neethirajan and CSBE/SCGAB Webmaster - René Morissette. The LAC has held 10 planning sessions between late September 2014 and early June 2015.

The LAC decided on the theme, “Innovation in Water, Energy and Biosystems (iWEB) -Positioning the Globe for 2050” for the 2015 conference. It was chosen as the theme in order to reflect the diverse nature and expertise of the CSBE/SCGAB membership, as well as to solicit the participation and collaboration of professional non-members of related interest, as we collectively journey ahead into the future.

  • 2015 CSBE/SCGAB Conference - Professional Development Workshops

As part of the conference program, the LAC approached two non-technical and two technical speakers to host workshops on Sunday and Wednesday, respectively. Unfortunately due to low enrolment, three of the four workshops were cancelled and the LAC opted for only one technical workshop on Wednesday.

  • 2015 CSBE/SCGAB Conference - Technical Session Oral and Poster Presentations

About 110 presenters from across Canada, the U.S.A. and abroad responded to the “Call for Papers” first issued in December 2014. Of these, the highest numbers of responses were broadly related to topics on biosystem management, bioprocessing, water management and energy.

  • 2015 CSBE/SCGAB Conference - Technical Tours

Three technical tours are being organized as part of the conference program. Two of the tours are scheduled to take delegates to sites located outside Edmonton, while the third tour is targeted at sites within the city. The tour sites span a range of bioengineering interests and innovation within Alberta in the fields of bioprocessing, food processing, energy, water management, biosytem management, and information and electrical technology, as we strive to diversify our provincial economy.

  • 2015 CSBE/SCGAB Conference - Panel Discussion

A panel of representatives from government, the primary production industry, the value-added, food processing industry, and a non-government organization, will discuss “The Impact of Social License on Sustainable Food Production in Canada”. The discussion is anticipated to highlight the influential role consumers’ play today in determining the future of the food industry in Canada. Interestingly, the influential effects of the food industry’s “social license to operate” is being experienced at every level along the food supply chain, and is most certainly another level of detail bioengineers must factor in when designing and supporting sustainable food production systems in Canada,  towards 2050 and beyond. 

This will be my last annual report as SK Regional Director. After four fun and interesting years on Council, I am stepping down but will continue to be actively involved in the CSBE.

The last four years has seen a major transition at the University of Saskatchewan; the department of Agricultural and Bioresource Engineering was merged with the department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. While some view this merge as a loss for the CSBE/SCGAB, the society now has access to students in more disciplines as Chemical, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering have absorbed the courses and streams previously offered by Ag/Bio Engineering. Many of the fourth year design and graduate student projects in these disciplines have an agricultural or bioengineering aspect, so these students and faculty would certainly benefit from a membership with the CSBE/SCGAB.

The agricultural engineering industry in Saskatchewan is stronger than ever with several large equipment manufacturers calling Saskatchewan home and smaller manufacturers receiving support from programs such as NRC’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP). The CSBE/SCGAB offers significant benefits to industrial members, as evidenced by the successful industry-academia collaborations showcased at the CSBE/SCGAB conference in Saskatoon in 2013.

In 2015, the final group of graduates to receive a B.Sc. in Agricultural and Bioresource Engineering convocated from the University of Saskatchewan. Congratulations to Joshua Coté, Jason Cousins, Brennan Crooymans, Joël Denis, Dustin Eichhorn, David Epp, Ryan Green, Alanna Howell, Luke Lowenberger, Jonathan Schuba and Charley Sprenger. Congratulations also to the students who were selected to receive CSBE/SCGAB design project awards:

CSBE/SCGAB Undergraduate Design Project Award:

Design of a cherry pitter for small intermediate cherry producers
Jason Cousins
Ryan Green
Luke Lowenberger
Supervisor: Lope Tabil

CSBE/SCGAB Undergraduate Thesis Award:

Point row control for air seeders
Brennan Crooymans
Joël Denis
Jonathan Schuba
Joshua Coté
Supervisors: Joel Gervais and Ross Welford

CSBE/SCGAB Graduate Thesis Award:

Effect of Pretreatment on the Breakdown of Lignocellulosic Matrix in Biomass Feedstock (Ph.D.)
Kingsley Iroba
Supervisor: Lope Tabil

I hope to catch up with some fellow Saskatchewan members at the CSBE/SCGAB conference in Edmonton in July! Best of luck to the incoming SK Regional Director, Dr. Venkatesh Meda! 

We have extra copies!

We have extra hard copies of CBE Journal

Volume 56 (2014)
Volume 57 (2015)
Volume 58 (2016)

Available at only 60 CAD each (including shipping).

Please contact John Feddes at manager@csbe-scgab.ca  to place your order.

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