North Carolina Renewable Ocean Energy 2023 Symposium

It was good to be back in person for the 2023 North Carolina Renewable Ocean Energy Program research symposium in late March. I was honored to receive the 2023 Edge Award for leadership in advancing marine energy because this group has been so supportive of my research and students over the years. The award came as a surprise, so I was fortunate to have Dean Keynton and the student research from Water Bros in attendance as well my NCROEP students for the awards ceremony. CSI were great hosts as always and I’m looking forward to more research opportunities in the near future.

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A Return to Robot Inspecting

March was a busy month, but I was glad to be able to return to volunteering with the FIRST Roboics Competition at the District Event in Mecklenburg County (Mar 17-19). Luckily the yellow hat and the lead robot inspector vest still fit and I even located a Bravo Team sponsor sticker in the wild. On Sunday, I was tracked down by my student Jenny Dam (FIRST alum from Team 4935 – T-Rex, based out of Olympic High School) before another surprise…I was given the volunteer award for the Mecklenburg County District Event. It was the icing on the cake after getting to reunite with so many good people after being off of the FIRST circuit for a couple of years. Great robots, a good team of inspectors, and some nice competition on the field made for a busy but fun weekend.

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Waves to Water…One Year Later

A nice writeup about the 4 teams in the Waves to Water DRINK Stage finale and link to a great video about the prize.

Team WATER BROS and their wave-powered desalination prototype at the Waves to Water Prize DRINK Finale at the Coastal Studies Institute in North Carolina’s Outer Banks.
Photo from Werner Slocum, NREL

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Water Bros Article In UNC Charlotte Magazine

They folks in university communications did a great job with the article on Abby and Allison that appears in the Fall 2022 edition of the UNC Charlotte magazine.

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End of the semester festivities

It was good to have some students and alums over food and games as the fall semester came to a close. On the games front, we learned a bit about wombats, gambled with a middle schooler, and Matt Calvin remained undefeated in Kill Dr. Lucky (the family board game of cold blooded murder) 19.5th anniversary edition.

Students/Alums/Business Partners/Guests working diligently decorating cookies
Dr. Williams’ attempt at a stellar battle crusier, with fire coming out the thrusters and blue laser beams (pew pew), was interpreted instead as a half eater fish.
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North Carolina Renewable Ocean Energy Program faculty, students and alumni with Water Bros Desal at the conference

It was good to be back to in-person conferences this September for UMERC/METS/OREC out in Portland. There were a lot of great presentations and it was nice to hear all of the exciting research updates. In particular, it was great to catch up with my former student Casey and hear about all the exciting things he’s doing at NREL.

Catching up with Casey Nichols
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Waves to Water DRINK Stage Finale Pictures

The Waves to Water Communications team has posted a Flickr galley of the DRINK stage finale. There are some great pictures in there, like this one of Landon and me talking device recovery with the NREL team.

April 4, 2022 – (Photo by Werner Slocum / NREL)

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