Concordia's Thursday Report

Vol. 28, No.4

October 23, 2003


In memoriam: Adolf E. Blach, 1926 - 2003

Professor Adolf E. Blach joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering of Concordia University in 1973. He became an assistant professor in 1977, and a full professor in 1994. After his retirement in 1996, he continued to serve as an adjunct professor until his death on Oct. 2.

He came to the university with a wealth of industrial experience. A specialist in pressure vessel design and piping, he worked as a consultant throughout Canada and the United States, and was a member of the Order of Engineers of Quebec and the Association of Professional Engineers in Ontario.

As the current chair, Suong Van Hoa recalled, Professor Blach earned all his degrees while working, from his BSc in math and physics at Sir George Williams University (1967) to his doctorate at the École Polytechnique in 1983.

“He was an engineer and a designer at heart, meticulous in his work. He had an engineering feel, a very rare quality these days,” Dr. Hoa said.

As well as teaching and doing consulting, Dr. Blach was also very active in the administration of the Department and in the technical community at large. Among other things, he was on a CIDA team to establish a program of industrial engineering at the University of West Indies in St. Augustine, Trinidad, where many engineering educators were trained.

“He was also a person who enjoyed life for its every moment, including dancing and travelling,” Dr. Hoa recalled. “When I first organized the international conferences on advanced materials, at the banquet, when the music started, Professor Blach and Ms. Irene Blach were the first couple to dance.

“He was full of life and energy, and exuded it to the people around him. He was not just a colleague, but also a friend, and an example of how to work and how to live. We will dearly miss him.”