In 2018, Associated Engineering launched our new Strategic Plan, titled Shaping our Shared Future. The vision of our new plan is Creative solutions for a healthy, resilient world. With this aspiration in mind, in this new series in AE Today, you will meet members of our staff and learn about what they are doing in their professional and personal lives to help shape a more resilient, sustainable world. In the first of this series, we meet Vice President, Transportation Structures, Don Kennedy and Electrical Specialist, Scott Friel.
A bridge and seismic specialist, Vice President, Transportation Structures, Don Kennedy is passionate about improving the seismic resilience of our transportation infrastructure. Over his 30+ year career, he has worked on seismic rehabilitation projects across British Columbia and in New Zealand. Don says, “The many earthquakes around the world have shown that rapid access to a functioning transportation network is among the most critical needs of a region, their businesses, and residents to respond and recover from a damaging earthquake.”
Don has been a leader in the development and adoption of performance-based seismic design methods and codes in Canada. This framework encourages owners and engineers to communicate much more clearly on societal, owner, and the engineers’ expectations for seismic performance and post-seismic recovery. Don chairs the seismic sub-committee on the National Bridge Code, which in 2019 has included performance-based and seismic resilience into the practice of bridge retrofit. He was a co-author of Engineers & Geoscientists of BC’s guidelines, “Performance-based Seismic Design of Bridges in BC”. Don also leads a project for the Canadian Standards Association and the National Research Council to provide specific guidance to code writers to include climate-change resilience measures in the 2024 bridge code.
Through his work and volunteer efforts, Don is leading the way to improve the seismic resilience of our transportation infrastructure.
In 2015, with the price of solar panels and inverters dropping, Electrical Specialist, Scott Friel evaluated installing a solar system on his house, “I designed the system in 2016, and by 2017 the price had dropped from $3 per watt for materials to $3 per watt installed, so I couldn’t say no.” Scott designed 6 kilowatts of panels and 11 micro-invertors, with the potential to generate 7,500 kilowatt hours per year, his average household electrical usage.
At the same time, Scott investigated and then purchased an electric car. He says, “I figured that an electric car would need about 3,000 kilowatt hours per year. My new car’s average consumption is about 145 kilowatts hours per 1,000 kilometres in the summer and 285 kilowatt-hours per 1,000 kilometres in the winter. The usage has been close to my estimates and works out to about $350 per year for power.” Scott adds, “My car has an extended range of 500 kilometres, which gets me from Edmonton to Calgary!”
For Scott, replacing fossil fuels at home and on his commute is his contribution to a healthy, resilient world.