Ray graduated in May of 2001 from Montana State University with a B.A.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering. He soon moved to Boulder, Colorado and began work at Starsys Research Corporation, an aerospace R&D firm specializing in mechanical actuators for space flight. During this time he was involved in a number of exciting projects such as the design of a mechanical grappling device for servicing satellites in orbit and the qualification testing of actuators for the NASA Mars Exploratory Rover. But after 2 years as a self proclaimed “rocket scientist”, the draw of academia proved too strong.
In September 2003 Ray moved to Vancouver and joined the Renewable Resources Laboratory. His thesis project involved the design, fabrication and testing of a sensor which uses the principles of optical laser interferometry to determine residual stresses in larger castings. Laser light is used to image a surface onto a CCD camera and by combining interference patterns the sensor is able to measure very small surface deformations. These deformations measurements are then correlated to determine the residual stress state in the casting.
Ray successfully completed his M.A.Sc. in December 2005 and soon began working at his present job in the field of hydro power at Klohn Crippen Berger. His job involves mechanical design of powerhouse facilities, including pumping and drainage systems, flow control gates, HVAC and hydraulic systems. Although quite different from the world of optics and residual stress, the experience gained during his time at the Renewable Resources Laboratory has served him very well. He is also actively involved in Engineers without Borders and adamantly believes that engineers and technology have a particular role to play in the betterment of society.