Electrical Engineering Research Center Celebrates 10 Years

Researchers from the the National Science Foundation Center for GRid-connected Advanced Power Electronic Systems recently celebrated 10 years of collaboration.
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Researchers from the the National Science Foundation Center for GRid-connected Advanced Power Electronic Systems recently celebrated 10 years of collaboration.

Faculty and students from five universities gathered in early November to celebrate 10 years of collaboration, education and innovation in advanced power electronics.

The National Science Foundation Center for GRid-connected Advanced Power Electronic Systems (GRAPES) in the Department of Electrical Engineering was established in 2009. GRAPES members, faculty and students celebrated the milestone during their Industrial Advisory Board Meeting on Nov. 7-8 in Fayetteville. 

GRAPES is a National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center, where engineering faculty from severael universities collaborate with industry partners 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 GRAPES 16 commercial and government members.

The 10-year anniversary meeting took place at the Graduate Hotel and drew together faculty and students from the University of Arkansas, University of South Carolina, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Korea University, Yonsei University, and industry leaders from 14 of the 16 member companies.  GRAPES is completing Phase II as an NSF Center and has expanded globally to include Korea University and Yonsei University, both located in South Korea, and RWTH Aachen University in Germany.

The GRAPES Showcase included a poster session and hardware prototypes of current projects, as well as GRAPES projects through years.  The dinner program highlighted 10-year members, featured an anniversary video and celebrated Alan Mantooth for a decade of leadership.  The evening ended with an anniversary/birthday cake.  Watch the GRAPES 10 year anniversary video.

About GRAPES: The Center for GRid-connected Advanced Power Electronic Systems facilitates close research interactions between university faculty and students and the industrial members of the center. This relationship gives researchers a direct tie to today's power industry, allowing them to research topics that are closely aligned with industry interests. It also gives the involved companies a clear voice into what the students are learning, and so directly improves the quality of the employees they will hire in the next few years. Nearly 150 undergraduate and graduate students have worked within the center. Many of these students have gone on to work for member companies, while others have continued their educations or gone to work for other companies in the power and power electronics industries.

GRAPES leadership includes: Executive Director Alan Mantooth, Managing Director Shannon Davis, UA Site Director Juan Balda, USC Site Director Roger Dougal, UWM Site Director Adel Nasiri, RWTH Aachen Site Director Rik DeDoncker and GRAPES Korea Site Director Yong-June Shin.

For more information on GRAPES, contact Shannon Davis, GRAPES Managing Director, sgdavis@uark.edu, 479-575-4487. For more information GRAPES' next meeting, contact Karin Alvarado, karina@uark.edu, 479-575-4958.

Contacts

Karin Alvarado, marketing and communications specialist
Electrical Engineering
479-575-4958, karina@uark.edu

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

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