Researchers, Business Leaders Gather for GRAPES Update

Researchers and business leaders gathered last month to discuss the progress of the GRid-connected Advanced Power Electric Systems research center.
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Researchers and business leaders gathered last month to discuss the progress of the GRid-connected Advanced Power Electric Systems research center.

Leaders from universities and businesses around the world gathered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, last month to review current research projects for a center focused on grid-connected power.

The National Science Foundation Center for GRid-connected Advanced Power Electronic Systems (GRAPES) in the Department of Electrical Engineering brought together faculty and students from five universities, including two international schools, industry leaders from 10 of the 17 member companies, and one international company. 

The group gathered May 30 and 31 as part of the GRAPES Spring 2018 Industrial Advisory Board Meeting, which is designed to bring together researchers and companies to focus power electronics innovation on the world's power grid.

The meeting took place on the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee campus, and included attendees from the University of Arkansas, University of South Carolina, UWM, and others. Corporations including Arkansas Electric Coop Corporation, DRS, Eaton, G&W Electric, Southern Company, Southwest Power Pool, Thyphoon HIL, We Energies and Wolfspeed-A Cree Company also participated, representing GRAPES' industry partners.

"Our meetings are important not only to provide updates on the research that is occurring in the center, but also to provide a networking opportunity between our students and company members," Mantooth said.  "These meetings allow our company members see the potential of new employees available to the workforce in the near future."

GRAPES is in its eighth year as a National Science Foundation Phase II Center, conducting research to drive innovation in the electric power industry in areas like adapting the power grid for solar and wind energy, improving greater standardization of control mechanisms embedded in power electronics and developing new technologies for advanced power electronic systems.

GRAPES is also expanding globally, and recently signed a collaboration agreement with Yonsei University and Korea University to form GRAPES-Korea. Additional collaboration is occurring with RWTH Aachen University in Germany and future collaboration with a research institute in Mexico.

About GRAPES: GRAPES is a National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center. At this center, engineering faculty from the University of Arkansas and the University of South Carolina collaborate with members of industry to develop new technologies for advanced power electronic systems, develop new software and tools for controlling embedded- and grid-connected power electronics, and to educate engineers who understand the power electronic technologies that are important to our members. GRAPES' 16 member organizations come from commercial and government sectors of the economy.

For more information GRAPES' next meeting, contact Karin Alvarado, karina@uark.edu, 479-575-4958.

Contacts

Karin Alvarado, marketing and communications specialist
College of Engineering Cato Springs Research Center
479-575-4958, karina@uark.edu

Nick DeMoss, director of communications
College of Engineering
479-575-5697, ndemoss@uark.edu

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