Alain Desrochers

Alain Desrochers

Department of Mechanical Engineering
Université de Sherbrooke

Chair title

NSERC Chair in Design for Aluminum (DFAL)

Chair program

Chairs in Design Engineering Program


Senior Chairholder since 2011


The overall objective of the NSERC Chair in Design for Aluminum (DFAL) is to promote the training of skilled engineers in aluminum products design through a project-based learning approach. The specific objectives are:
  • to develop and transfer the knowledge and expertise required to design products, rather than prototypes, where the reliability, production and assembly constraints are properly taken into account; and
  • to encourage the use of aluminum for in-product design from a cost/benefit/performance standpoint.
The Chair's activities will cover all educational levels: undergraduate, graduate and doctoral. At the undergraduate level, the theme will be application of design knowledge for aluminum and include the following activities:
  • the development of courses on the use of aluminum in design and the optimization and validation of products;
  • the implementation of a multi-material assembly laboratory; and
  • the strategic use of aluminum in end-of-degree projects. At the master's and doctoral levels, the Chair will go further with an approach that encourages creative design of innovative aluminum products.
To this end, two research areas will be investigated:
  • the development of methodologies and advanced design tools; and
  • the development of innovative aluminum materials and products.
Lastly, in terms of continuous training, the approach used will encourage the acquiring of aluminum design skills. The actions of the Chair in support of this component include:
  • the range of courses on aluminum engineering;
  • the building of a reference Web site on the use of aluminum in design; and
  • the creation of a network of business and industry involved in projects making use of aluminum.
The Chair will be held by Alain Desrochers who, in the past, had led a private Research Chair with Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP), and is currently the University Affairs Director of the Centre de technologies avancées BRP-Université de Sherbrooke. The activities of the Chair in Aluminum Products Design will also be supported by Alcoa Canada Industrial Co-Chairholder Russell Long, whose expertise will be used to define and monitor student projects in three levels of study. Beyond student learning, the Chair will promote the use of aluminum, a corrosion-resistant recyclable material that reduces greenhouse gas emissions by making vehicles lighter. Canada is one of the world’s largest producers of aluminum.


  • Centre de recherche REGAL
  • Centre québécois de recherche et de développement de l'aluminium (CQRDA)
  • Russell S. Long, cotitulaire industriel représentant d'Alcoa Canada

Contact information

Department of Mechanical Engineering
Université de Sherbrooke
2500 University Boulevard
Sherbrooke, Québec
J1K 2R1

Tel.: 819-821-8000, ext. 62812
Fax: 819-821-7163


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