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Scott Nokleby, PhD - University of Ontario Institute of Technology. Oshawa, ON, CA

Scott Nokleby, PhD Scott Nokleby, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Automotive, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science | University of Ontario Institute of Technology

Oshawa, ON, CANADA

Innovating robotic technology to reduce human exposure to hazardous environments


Advancing automation processes across leading industries can significantly improve manufacturing efficiency and accuracy, while reducing waste and costs. These drivers, along with eliminating the need for humans to work in potentially hazardous environments motivates the research of Scott Nokleby, PhD, Associate Professor in the Department of Automotive, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering in the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science.

Autonomous aerial vehicles are designed to keep operators a safe distance from harm, yet this technology has many downsides in commercial use. Dr. Nokleby’s latest research aims to improve the power to weigh ratio of these quadcopters by building aerial manipulator systems that enable batteries to be changed in flight.

Awarded a 2016 Fellow of the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering, Dr. Nokleby’s critical research agenda focuses on the application of advanced kinematics for the control of redundant manipulator systems including joint redundant arms, redundantly actuated parallel manipulators, and mobile manipulator systems. Achieving better control of these systems using automated arms to improve efficiency and reduce risk of exposure will have a major impact in industries such as mining and nuclear power.

With a proven track record of successful industry collaborations, Dr. Nokleby has spent the past 12 years developing advanced systems to solve real-world automation problems. Director of UOIT’s Mechatronics and Robotics Systems (MARS) Lab, his research group continues work on industrial projects with Cameco Corporation through his previous role as the Associate Cameco Research Chair in Nuclear Fuel at UOIT. His research has been published in more than 90 refereed journal and conference publications.

The opportunity to define UOIT’s engineering curriculum and labs brought Dr. Nokleby to UOIT in June 2004. He led the development of proposals for the university’s first doctoral degree and first Master of Engineering, both in Mechanical Engineering, along with its first thesis-based Master of Applied Science – in Mechanical Engineering, and undergraduate Mechatronics programs.

Inspired by a keen interest in understanding how things work, Dr. Nokleby earned his Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering with a Co-op program and Management option, his Master of Applied Science and Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering, all in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Victoria.

Industry Expertise (8)



Industrial Automation



Mechanical/Industrial Engineering

Program Development


Areas of Expertise (11)

Advanced Kinematics of Robots and Mechanisms


Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles


Mechanism and Robot Design


Mobile-Manipulator Systems

Mobile Robots

Optimal Design

Redundant Manipulator Systems


Accomplishments (6)

2016 Fellow of the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering (CSME) (professional)


Appointed to this role for his significant contributions to advancement in the field.

2014 CSME Best Paper in Transactions of the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering (professional)


Awarded for the 2013 co-authored paper: Indoor Localization of an OmniDirectional Wheeled Mobile Robot, which appeared in the journal's Vol. 37, No. 4, pp. 1043-1056.

Past-President, Durham Outdoors Club (personal)


Dr. Nokleby served as President from May 2013 to April 2016. The club is run by and for its members who share a common goal of learning about and pursuing a broad range of outdoor activities and experiences.

Associate Editor, Transaction of the CSME (professional)


Published quarterly by the CSME, this archival journal dedicated is to the broad field of mechanical engineering.

Communications Officer, Executive Committee, Canadian Committee for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms (CCToMM) (professional)


The CCToMM is dedicated promoting development in the field of machines and mechanisms by theoretical and experimental research and its applications to practice.

Adjunct Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of New Brunswick (professional)


Dr. Nokleby serves as a committee member for graduate supervisory students.

Education (3)

University of Victoria: PhD, Mechanical Engineering 2003

University of Victoria: MASc, Mechanical Engineering 1999

University of Victoria: BEng, Mechanical Engineering 1997

Co-op Program and Management Option

Affiliations (6)

  • Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering
  • Professional Engineers Ontario
  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers
  • Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
  • Engineers Without Borders

Event Appearances (4)

MCNP Simulation of Offline Core Dose in CANDU Reactors

UNENE Workshop  Toronto, Ontario


Designing the Next Generation of CANDU Pressure Tube Inspection Tools

UNENE Workshop  Toronto, Ontario


Design and Development of a Non-Contact Flaw Replication Tool for CANDU Fuel Channels

34th CNS Annual Conference and 37th Annual CNS-CNA Student Conference  Toronto, Ontario


Radbot - A Mobile Robotic Platform for Generating Radiation Maps

UNENE Workshop  Toronto, Ontario


Research Grants (4)

Automated Radiation Profiling and Shotcreting of Uranium Mine Drifts

NSERC – Collaborative Research and Development Grant with Cameco Corporation $200000


Dr. Nokleby is the primary investigator in this three-year research project that aims to develop a system to collect better data for uranium mine geologists.

Mining Systems, Automation, and Robotics

Ontario Online Initiative $94500


Dr. Nokleby co-developed this online course in collaboration with Queen's University available in winter 2016.

Development of New CANDU Fuel Channel Inspection Tools for Increased Inspection Speed

NSERC – Collaborative Research and Development Grant with UNENE, OPG, and Cameco Corporation $360000


During regular maintenance shutdowns in CANDU nuclear power plants, the current system of inspecting fuel channels creates a major bottleneck. As principal investigator of this four-year research project, Dr. Nokleby is developing a robotic inspection system to allow multiple copies to be inserted into the fuel channels at the same time, reducing inspection time and increasing productivity.

Integrated Kinematic Control of Mobile Manipulators

NSERC Discovery Grant $100000


As principal investigator of this five-year research program, Dr. Nokleby is exploring ways of better controlling mobile manipulator systems using automated arms to improve efficiency and reduce risk in areas such as mining.

Courses (3)

Introduction to Engineering

ENGR 1015U, 1st Year Undergraduate Course

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Robotics and Automation

MANE 4280U, 4th Year Undergraduate Course

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Mobile Robotic Systems

ENGR 5945G, Graduate Course

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Articles (4)

Design and Implementation of an Automated Gamma Probe for Jet Boring Uranium Mining Journal of Nuclear Engineering and Radiation Science


A proof-of-concept detector prototype capable of collecting and storing radiometric data in the Jet Boring System (JBS) during pilot hole drilling at the Cigar Lake uranium mine is presented. Cigar Lake is the world’s second highest known grade uranium mine and is located in northern Saskatchewan, Canada. Variant design is used to design, develop, test and implement the detector’s firmware, software and hardware.

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Indoor Localization of an Omni-Directional Wheeled Mobile Robot Transactions of the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering


This paper presents a localization system developed for estimating the pose, i.e., position and orientation, of an omni-directional wheeled mobile robot operating in indoor structured environments. The developed system uses a combination of relative and absolute localization methods for pose estimation.

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Optimum Design of a Spherical Quasi-Homokinetic Linkage for Motion Transmission Between Orthogonal Axes Mechanism and Machine Theory


Homokinetic motion transmission between two shafts with axes intersecting at right angles is a recurrent problem; the term quasi-homokinetic indicates that a constant 1:1 velocity ratio between the input and output is the design target, even though this cannot be fully met with a four-bar linkage. A four-bar spherical linkage is optimally designed, which performs “homokinetically” with minimum error through a 120° rotation of its input link, large enough for one specific robotics application.

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Force Optimization of Kinematically-Redundant Planar Parallel Manipulators Following a Desired Trajectory Mechanism and Machine Theory


In this work, an optimization-based methodology for resolving the generalized forces for kinematically-redundant planar parallel manipulators following a desired trajectory is presented. The proposed methodology assumes that the manipulator is performing a task that is slow enough to allow kinetostatic analysis to be used. Two test trajectories were used to show the effectiveness of the proposed methodology.

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