John Glew, award-winning designer
John Glew has built more than a thousand devices over the last 30 years that have helped scientists move their research forward. His list of creations includes everything from machines that recover water samples, evaluate the growth rate of plants and devices used in mineral abrasion studies.
“Many years ago I started working with John Smol (director of the Paleoecological Environmental Assessment and Research Laboratory - PEARL) developing core sampling equipment used in the study of lake acidification and currently used extensively for climate change work undertaken by PEARL,” says Mr. Glew, technical director of PEARL at Queen’s. “Much of this equipment developed at Queen’s University is now used around the world.”
Mr. Glew, who has a background in geology and engineering, does most of his designing and building at home where he sticks to his drawing board and a drafting machine – he hasn’t yet made the switch to computers.
He currently has a number of projects in the development stage including creating a device to sample sea water below a thick ice cover, equipment to evaluate plant growth in the field and a portable sampling device to separate and package underwater material without exposing it to the above-water atmosphere.
Mr. Glew was recently awarded the Outstanding Service Award from the International Paleolimnology Association (IPA) in recognition for his outstanding work over the last 30 years. The IPA works to advance the science of the study of historic lake environments and micro-fossils preserved in the sedimentary record.