Wes Bruce - Research Promotion Chair 2018-2019 / Past President

Welcome to another busy year of ASHRAE! I’m happy to serve as your Research Promotion Chair for 2018-19.

The RP campaign is vital to the success of ASHRAE as a whole - RP supports international and local technical research projects, Education and ALI, Scholarships, and many other initiatives.

This technical research contributes to the development of standards, guidelines, procedures, tools, and even the ASHRAE handbooks we use religiously.

Since 1960, over 845 research projects valued at $67.5+ Million have been conducted through funding from ASHRAE Research. 

Our chapter goal for this year is $12,250.00.

I would like to personally thank all of our RP sponsors, and look forward to continued success this year.

If you have any questions, concerns, or comments with regards to RP, please reach out to me anytime.

A little bit about myself:

I was born and raised in rural southeastern Ontario, and relocated to Edmonton in 2006.

Having graduated from Mechanical Engineering Technology, I was initially employed in the automotive industry prior to establishing a career in HVAC/R.

I’ve been a member of ASHRAE since 2009, and proud to be a member of our tightly-knit industry.

Ryan McLennan - Board Member at Large 2018-2019


I am a professional chemical engineer with over 10 years of experience managing facility-based projects, with focus on operational optimization.

I also have an extensive chemistry/laboratory background and am passionate about critical air systems with regards to both design and emerging technology.

My wife and I welcomed our first son in January 2018. If spare time existed, I would watch more football and play more hockey.

Michael Ream - NAC President's Message 2018-2019


Dear ASHRAE NAC Chapter Members:

It is an honor and a privilege to be able to serve as the Chapter President for the 2018-2019 year.

As we look forward to this new year, I would like to take a moment and thank Wes Bruce and all of the other Past Presidents for their leadership and commitment to the chapter. Without them, we would not have the dynamic chapter that we have today.

ASHRAE was formed as the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers by the merger in 1959 of American Society of Heating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHAE) which was founded in 1894 and The American Society of Refrigerating Engineers (ASRE) founded in 1904.

What started in 1959 as an organization with 18,000 members has grown into a global society of over 50,000 with members on every continent in the world.  While the long-term goals of ASHRAE have evolved since then, the one thing that has remained constant is the hard work and dedication of the volunteers that have served over the years.

I hope that everyone has had a good summer and is looking forward to an exciting year coming up. We’ve got some interesting speakers, training courses as well as social events planned for this year.

My involvement with ASHRAE started over 15 years ago. I started by attending meetings based on topics that were of professional interest. From there I was able to enjoy the social and networking aspects of the meetings and that has evolved into becoming an active member of the board.

To the returning members of the Board and Committee Chairs, I appreciate your continued support of our local chapter; to the new members, I am excited to be working with you in the upcoming year.

I’m looking forward seeing all of you at the meetings throughout the year. I ask for your continued support of the chapter by attending the meetings, donations to the Research Promotion campaign, networking at the social events and sharing your technical expertise.

Michael Ream, P.Eng.

Justin Phill - Secretary 2017-2018


I am the ASHRAE Northern Alberta Chapter Secretary this year. As the Secretary, I am responsible for answering email inquiries sent to the chapter email, sending out meeting invites, and recording meeting minutes at the chapter Board of Governors meetings.

This is my third year on the board, the previous two being the Young Engineers in ASHRAE (YEA) and Student Activities (SA) chair.

When not helping out with ASHRAE, I work as a Mechanical Engineer who is primarily focused on energy modelling and sustainable design.

Outside of working hours you’ll find me doing something music related, from songwriting to DJ-ing.

Justin Phill

Low Temperature Hydronic Heating in Glass Buildings

Buildings with glass facades are becoming more common among new construction because they are aesthetically pleasing to occupants and passers-by, as well as to developers hoping to make their building stand out among numerous others. Studies have found that spaces with improved daylight and/or views offer increased retail value, improved worker productivity and decreased absenteeism and turnover.

Although they are eye-catching, glass buildings can present temperature control and energy efficiency challenges if they aren’t coupled with the proper heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. It’s important for engineers, developers and architects to understand how hydronic heating and cooling systems can alleviate issues within glass buildings without taking up too much space.

So Why Low-temperature Hydronic Heating?

Some hydronic heating systems rely on water to heat the surrounding area through a process called convection, or the transfer of heat energy by movement of a medium. With convection, air flows from below and is forced up or naturally rises across a coil when hot water is passed through. This hot air is then expelled out above the coil and dispersed throughout the room. This circular airflow has multiple benefits in glass buildings:

Reduced Condensation:

These systems, which can be placed discretely along floor-to-ceiling windows,  solve condensation and cold zone issues because they use convection to create a curtain of warm air throughout an entire room, providing a barrier between a cold window and nearby occupants. A sleek, thin unit also ensures views are not obstructed and allows residents to place a sofa, desk or bed closer to a window.  These units can also be installed in a floor trench if the window is floor to ceiling. 

The same effect can’t be achieved solely through in-floor radiant heating systems and radiant panels, which, although popular, rely on radiation rather than convection to warm a surrounding area from the floor upwards. Heat from radiation is concentrated on both sides of a traditional radiator’s panels but the effect causes significant energy losses on the window side. The heating effect from the room-facing side of a radiator decreases as a person gets further away from the unit.

Improved Comfort and Safety:

Hydronic heating systems can also solve the issue of fluctuating energy loads, which can become a larger issue within expansive spaces that attract many visitors. However, in order for a unit to respond rapidly to the temperature changes due to internal and external energy loads, the mass of the radiator needs to be as low as possible. The lower the water content and weight of the heat emitter, the lower the inertia and the more controllable it becomes. 

Compared to in-floor radiant solutions, radiators equipped with optimized heat exchange technology are better heat conductors and have a lower overall mass. Low-H20 solutions contain only 10 percent of the water content compared to traditional radiators, allowing them to react almost immediately as external factors change. Because the units contain a lower water content, they also remain at a lower exterior temperature, increasing safety for occupants.

The units also operate at much lower noise levels, making them less disruptive. Low-H20 solutions are also a safer choice compared to hot panel radiators near windows, because during a cold winter day, traditional radiators generate a lot of thermal stress on the glazing. In these periods, the glass becomes brittle and can easily crack from the slightest impact.

Financial Savings:

 Improved response to changes in temperature increases occupant comfort and provides cost savings. When installed in an office or school, a hydronic heating system provides output within minutes, generating enough energy to heat the space in a short period of time. This is a much more cost-effective and sustainable option to the traditional method of starting up the heating system several hours before building occupants arrive in the morning.

Conversely, on a warm day, the system can quickly reduce output during times when the building is able to take advantage of the natural solar and internal loads.

A system that is slow to adjust will cause occupants to overheat. Plus, each second that a radiator is emitting heat after switching off the system is a waste of energy. 

Improved Worker Productivity:

For businesses, proper heating can actually translate to a better bottom line. Studies have shown that improved comfort can positively impact employee productivity. According to David Pogue, national director of sustainability at CB Richard Ellis, worker performance improves with temperatures up to 72°F, and experiences a downturn with temperatures above 73 to 75°F.  Whether hydronic heating solutions are installed in residential properties or commercial spaces they result in more reactive outputs and fewer heat and noise-related complaints to management.

Mark Henry - Chapter Historian 2017-2018


I was born and raised in small town Saskatchewan.  I moved to Edmonton 17 years ago and continue to be a Saskatchewan Roughrider fan.  A nice bonus is that this annoys Tom Jacknisky.

After graduating from NAIT, I started out on the tools before joining a mechanical engineering firm for 10 years.  I’ve been on the sales side with my current employer for the last four years plus.

I’ve enjoyed my time on the Board as co-chair of Student Activities and the past few years as Chapter Historian.   I’m looking forward to my new position in the fall as Secretary.

I’ve been an ASHRAE member since 2011.  I’ve always enjoyed seeing everyone at the meetings/events, enjoying a good meal, and our speakers and lecturers.  It’s been great to spend time with other people in the industry.

Chapters Regional Conference 2020

CRC 2020 Northern Alberta Chapter with Skyline.png

Every year, one chapter in ASHRAE Regional XI hosts the Chapters Regional Conference. The CRC is a four day long event comprising of Caucus meetings, Business Sessions, Board of Governors Chair position training, and much, much more!

In 2020, Edmonton will be host to Delegates, Alternates, board trainees, and special guests from eleven chapters in Region XI.

Kent Signorini is the CRC 2020 Committee Chair. As we near the date for CRC 2020, Kent will be looking for volunteers to help with planning and execution of the CRC weekend.

Helping organize and run a CRC is a great way to begin your involvement with ASHRAE. You will learn about the inner workings of the Chapter and Region, and be doing a great service for the attendees.

If you are interested in volunteering to help with CRC 2020, please contact Kent by using the Contact Us form.

You can learn more about ASHRAE CRCs by visiting: 


Thank you!

Christina Herbers - Board Member at Large 2017-2018


I am a professional mechanical engineer with over 16 years of experience managing projects primarily throughout Alberta and BC.  The projects I have managed range from HVAC fancoil research, natural gas pipeline designs, District Heating projects, and Water Treatment Plant designs.  

The past few years, I have specialized in Business Development. I am passionate about my family, my clients, several charities that I volunteer with, sports and the environment.

I look forward to being on the ASHRAE Northern Alberta Chapter Board!

Christina Herbers, P.Eng, LEED AP

Rainwater Harvesting Systems in Alberta


By Christina Herbers, P.Eng, LEED AP

Sustainable building design is part of our future. Reducing a buildings energy use and use of natural resources is the first step.  One low cost item that can be done is to incorporate a rainwater harvesting system into your next building design.

The main rule for sizing a rainwater harvesting system is that the supply, the volume of water to be captured and stored, must equal or exceed the volume of water used, also called demand.  Assume that in Alberta, we can only meet part of the building's water demand for six months from approximately mid-April to mid-October. 

To determine the buildings total annual water demand, for an existing building, you would review the historic water use records.  For new construction, you would project the water demand based on building usage, number of occupants, and days that the building will be used per week.


For your building, you will also need to determine:

What the captured water will be used for, such as grey water reuse for toilet and/or urinal flushing.

  • The maximum amount of water that can possibly be captured.
  • The collection surface area (or area of the roof).
  • And the daily volume of rainfall.

The maximum amount of water to be captured (in mm) multiplied by the area of the roof (in m2) equals the total possible rainwater that can be captured in Litres.

You will then need to size the pump and storage tank for the optimal system performance, refer to drawing above. 

Check out these resources below for tips on how to incorporate this green aspect into your next building.