Emily Moder, 2013, Civil and Environmental Engineering

This summer I worked in a graduate student lab at the North China Electric Power University in Beijing. My research was focused on improving understanding of wind speed distributions in order to increase the ability of wind farms to predict their energy output. To do this, I used several established wind speed distribution models and compared their outputs to data of various meteorological variables, to determine patterns as to when different models produced accurate results. Since I hope to work on developing and expanding the use of renewable energy both in the U.S. and abroad, this experience was incredibly valuable in both thinking about my plans after graduation and in giving me perpective on how renewable energy is seen in China. I was able to collaborate with students and faculty from different countries on a mission of mutual interest: wind energy. I also have a new appreciation for the importance of understanding the culture in which one works, and how people of different backgrounds can come together to work toward a common vision for a better future.