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Renewable Energy Expert Talks Solar Tech During Guest Lecture
U.S. Navy photo by MC2 Michael Ehrlich

Renewable Energy Expert Talks Solar Tech During Guest Lecture

By MC2 Michael Ehrlich

Dr. Anjaneyulu Krothapalli, Don Fuqua Eminent Scholar Chair and Professor Emeritus of Mechanical Engineering at Florida State University, offered the latest Defense Energy Seminar, April 26, on the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) campus.

Krothapalli’s presentation, titled “Solar Thermal Technology,” discussed the latest innovations in solar and thermal heat harvesting.

“The importance of this work is because we are trying to mitigate climate change that is brought on because of emissions,” said Krothapalli. “It is good for the Department of Defense to be involved because they have a lot of ships and planes and bases around the world where you want to promote the use of non-greenhouse-emitting energy. This seminar will discuss a few ways we can do this.

Retired Navy Cmdr. Kevin Maher of NPS’ Energy Academic Group has been the driving force behind the long-standing Defense Energy Seminar program, coordinating multiple opportunities for interested students and faculty to hear about the latest efforts in energy. Since 2010, Maher has brought well over 100 leading experts to campus to encourage discourse and provide real-world relevance to student, faculty research.

“[Krothapalli] is considered on the global network to be a renewable energies expert. We are really honored and delighted to have him here today to talk about solar thermal technology, which is more than photovoltaic cells,” said Maher. “It’s about amassing solar radiation and turning that into heat, and using that heat to provide energy.”

Photovoltaics are a widely-recognized application of solar energy harvesting, and continuing advancements in technology make using these systems more affordable than ever.

But these systems are just one of many ways to harvest solar radiation and turn it into usable heat, which has been widely researched in recent years given the variety of applications. Staying abreast of these technologies and techniques is advantageous for NPS researchers, Krothapalli says.

“It’s a good thing that the DOD and the Energy Academic Group here at NPS promote this type of research that could be used in so many ways,” he said. “NPS students may have the opportunity to one day implement this technology when they return back to the fleet.”

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