Posted On: Monday, May 22, 2017 - 4:38 pm

Although Hoël Wiesner graduated from Duke University on Sunday, May 14, he agreed to play “student” once more a few days later. Wiesner shared a Bass Connections team's research on energy resource assessment with North Carolina legislators at the State Capitol last Tuesday as part of Graduate Education Day. Learn more about the event, the team's research and what's next for Hoël and the Energy Data Analytics Lab. 

Posted On: Monday, May 22, 2017 - 11:05 am

Learn how Duke cultural anthropologist Christine Folch is leading a team of researchers from Duke and beyond to devise recommendations for Paraguay's energy future. The Itaipu Binational Dam, the largest generator of electricity in the world, is shared by Paraguay and Brazil—and key portions of the treaty that governs the dam will soon be up for renegotiation. The team sees this as an opportunity to advance sustainable development in South America. 

Posted On: Thursday, May 11, 2017 - 6:27 pm

Tesla’s mission is to “accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.” The company is tackling that goal on a number of fronts—now with the help of Kevin Shenk (E ‘15), who earned an energy engineering minor at Duke. Here Kevin reflects on how his Duke education prepared him for his work as a mechanical design engineer at Tesla. 

Posted On: Monday, May 08, 2017 - 11:21 am

The annual Duke Startup Challenge, a yearlong competition followed by an accelerator program, is designed to help Duke’s entrepreneurship community flourish. In 2016-17, the Duke University Energy Initiative offered the first-ever Clean Energy Prize ($10,000) in conjunction with the Startup Challenge, which is hosted by the Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative and the Fuqua School of Business. The Energy Initiative has awarded the 2016-17 Clean Energy Prize to the Perle Converter team: researcher Dr. Stefan Goetz and graduate student Chris Dougher. Their solution is a technology that can be used with solar panel systems, for battery storage, and in the growing electric vehicle market.

Posted On: Tuesday, May 02, 2017 - 5:47 pm

The Pratt School of Engineering-based Duke Electric Vehicles student club took first place in its category at the Shell Eco-Marathon Americas, the premier challenge for high-efficiency prototype electric vehicles held on April 30 in Detroit, Mich. The team credited aerodynamic redesign and on-the-spot data analysis as the winning factors.

Posted On: Monday, May 01, 2017 - 11:20 am

Learn more about Duke University senior Courtney Bell (T’17). During her internship at East Coast Greenway, she developed a proposal for a novel carbon offset market in which Greenway users could earn carbon credits by walking or cycling. 

Posted On: Monday, May 01, 2017 - 12:00 am

Test yourself with this word problem: Imagine you’re responsible for your company’s car fleet. You manage two models, an SUV that gets 10 miles to the gallon and a sedan that gets 20. The fleet has equal numbers of each, and all the cars travel 10,000 miles a year. You have enough capital to replace one model with more-fuel-efficient vehicles to lower operational costs and help meet sustainability goals. Which upgrade is better? A. Replacing the 10 MPG vehicles with 20 MPG vehicles B. Replacing the 20 MPG vehicles with 50 MPG vehicles. In this Harvard Business Review article, Duke professor Rick Larrick and coauthors Bart de Langhe and Stefano Puntoni explain why the answer may surprise you—and what it may show about how humans make decisions. 


Posted On: Monday, May 01, 2017 - 12:00 am

At the Bass Connections Showcase on April 20, undergraduate and graduate students from the 2016-2017 project teams shared their research with the Duke community and highlighted what they’ve accomplished. Through lightning talks by five teams—each representing one of the Bass Connections themes—and a poster session, students presented findings to a packed crowd in Scharf Hall. The event was also an opportunity to recognize the winners of several awards and grants. Lori Bennear, theme leader of Bass Connections in Energy, welcomed guests and introduced the five lightning talks—including one by the Energy Data Analytics Lab team.

Posted On: Friday, Apr 28, 2017 - 4:39 pm

In 2017-18, Energy Research Seed Fund grants will support seven new multidisciplinary teams of Duke researchers to pursue critical preliminary results—so they can attract more substantial external funds. This is the fourth round of funding. “This program, even in its fledgling years, has delivered a remarkable return on investment for Duke University,” notes Energy Initiative interim director Brian Murray. “And faculty tell us that it is helping them to experiment with new ideas and tap into their colleagues’ expertise across disciplines, advancing the quality of projects significantly.” 

Posted On: Thursday, Apr 27, 2017 - 12:00 am

Optimization, uncertainty, and data are prevalent throughout our daily lives and are poised to become even more important as the information age unfolds. To help spur advances in these increasingly important fields, Duke hosted its inaugural “Optimization Under Uncertainty and Data-Driven Science and Engineering” symposium at the Washington Duke Inn on April 13-14, 2017. For two days, more than 80 leading experts gathered to address mathematical and computational aspects of pressing problems including the smart grid, autonomous vehicles, energy and the environment, and using data to help in the fight against sex trafficking, among other topics.