Mechanical Design Engineer

McMaster University, Department of Mechanical Engineering Published: July 29, 2020
Hamilton, Ontario
Internship Type
Salary range
50,000 - 60,000
Hours per week
Start Date
End Date


The Mechanical Design Engineer will work on a demonstration project which aims to exhibit the ability of the Pizza Oven Waste Energy Recovery (POWER) system to repurpose wasted thermal energy from a cooking appliance’s exhaust gases and improve the overall restaurant energy performance. With our initial customer (Pizza Pizza Ltd) and start up company partner Harvest Systems Inc,  McMaster University’s objective is to fully demonstrate the commercial viability of the POWER system within the restaurant environment. The first objective is to fully validate the predicted utility savings and revenue model to further establish franchisee uptake and exhibit a proven cash flow for asset-based financing during the deployment phase. The second objective is to confirm the total cost of the POWER system by securing component manufacturers and suppliers and establishing relationships with installation contractors. The third objective is to demonstrate, at a large-scale, the ability to operate safely within a restaurant environment to safety regulators, thus allowing for the seamless adoption of updated standards pertaining to safe heat recovery practices within the food service industry. In summary, the goal of this project is to disseminate all the necessary information to fully demonstrate the technology to all stakeholders; including franchisees, utilities, investors, and regulators.

Duties and responsibilities

The mechanical design engineer or engineer in training will be engaged for 18-month to transform the prototype design into a commercial design. This will include refining the visual appeal and ease of fabrication/installation, the preparation of the final drawings (including tolerancing) for manufacturers, and a completed bill of materials for suppliers. This information will be used to obtain quotations from manufacturers and suppliers and by the Product Certification Coordinator to provide alternative suppliers for replacement parts during the certification process.

Using the pre-establish supply chain constructed during the research phase, the supply chain will be expanded to include heat exchanger aluminum extruding and die-casting manufacturers. During the Pizza Pizza Training Center installation, the project team obtained valuable knowledge of the installation plan. To aid in the installation process, the knowledge was transformed into a detailed protocol to minimize interruptions with restaurant operations. The protocol provides the order-of-operations to schedule material and equipment delivery and availability of personnel and skilled trades. During the commissioning phase, the installation will need to be inspected by TSSA over a one-day period to obtain a site-specific variance approval. Once approved, the system will remain operational for a minimum of six-months as part of the next milestone.


1. Commission POWER installations within three pre-selected restaurants.

2. Quotations from manufacturers, suppliers, and installation contractors for 30 units to satisfy the expected rollout in the first year of deployment.

Knowledge and skills

The candidate much background knowledge to undertake the following activities:

Undertaking research and heat recovery system design

Testing and measuring the performance of systems

Designing and implementing systems to improve efficiency and sustainability

Keeping up to date with the latest HVAC regulations

Liaising with suppliers, partner, regulators and contractors

Analysing and interpreting data and information

Recommending modifications for systems

Creating reports documentation

Go out on site for installation and periodic system testing

To be successful in this role these skills are required:

Strong written and verbal communication skills

Good grasp of mathematics and mechanical systems design

Highly organized

IT and Data Acquisition literate

Strong initiative

Excellent problem solving skills


Team player with ability to work on your own

Education required

University degree in Mechanical Engineering or Building Services degree

Candidate with a MASc Degree in Engineering with focus on thermal fluid systems would be preferred.

Certification required

The candidate is expected to have a PEng or are working towards PhD Certification and eligible to become a 'Engineer in Training'

Eligibility criteria

Career-Launcher Internships are funded by the Government of Canada under the Youth Employment Strategy. For program criteria information visit their website.


Qualified interns are:

  • Post-secondary students and graduates
  • No more than 30 years of age at the start of the internship
  • Canadian citizens, permanent residents or persons granted refugee status in Canada*
  • Legally allowed to work according to the relevant provincial and Canadian legislation and regulations
  • Available to work for at least six months
  • Not previous participants of a federal youth employment program
  • Not employees of the hiring employer prior to the start of their internship (does not apply to previous coop students or student interns)

*Refugee protection must be conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Persons awaiting refugee status, as well as those who hold a temporary visitor visa, student visa or work visa, are ineligible to participate in a Youth Employment Strategy initiative.

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