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Published April 17, 2017
Jonathan Naughton, University of Wyoming Department of Mechanical Engineering professor, will give the spring Faculty Senate Speaker Series talk Tuesday, April 25.
He will discuss “Wind Energy -- Benefit or Liability” at 4:10 p.m. in Room 310 of the Classroom Building. The event is free and open to the public.
Naughton is the director of the UW Wind Energy Research Center, which was awarded a $4.25 million grant in 2015 to research the interaction among wind farm efficiency, transmission stability and economics of transmission.
“Wind energy is a controversial topic in Wyoming,” Naughton says. “While it promises to add much-needed revenue to local economies and some to the state of Wyoming, it also is considered to be a primary reason that coal production is down and to impact the viewscapes that Wyoming residents enjoy.”
At the larger scale, the proposed integration of grid operations across the West to enable better use of the energy production facilities available -- and to allow connections between resource-rich areas such as Wyoming with the high-energy-demand regions of the West Coast -- also is generating praise and controversy, he says.
“All of these issues tend to draw visceral responses in polar directions that seldom help to provide a useful dialogue,” he says.
His talk will focus on the issues surrounding renewable energy, and wind energy in particular, and the growth of grid integration. Naughton’s work at UW that addresses some of these issues also will be presented.
Naughton studies the development of skin friction measurement techniques and turbulent flow measurement, modeling and control with applications to jet flows, wake flows, drag reduction, unsteady blade aerodynamics and atmospheric boundary layer modeling. He is an active member of the American Physical Society, the American Helicopter Society, and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
Naughton joined the UW Department of Mechanical Engineering in 1997. He received his Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University in the area of compressible fluid dynamics, and his bachelor’s degree from Cornell University.