April 22, 2010
Pratt junior Jared Dunnmon realizes that in order to solve any large worldwide problem – in this case sustainable energy – more is needed than just the technical knowhow.
That is why in addition to pursuing his undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering and materials science, he is also majoring in economics. When he graduates from Pratt next year, he plans to attend a university that offers a joint engineering and law degree.
But right now he is focusing on novel ways of generating energy. His solution is an a array of tiny turbines, about two inches high, that can take advantage of minute amounts of motion to create small amounts of electricity. These arrays could theoretically take advantage of the rocking motions of boats at mooring or wind between tall buildings.
For his work on microturbines, as well as his research into the economics behind sustainable energy sources, the Cincinnati native was awarded a Goldwater Scholarship in Science, Mathematics and Engineering. The national award for undergraduate research provides up to $7,500 toward annual tuition and expenses.
“The field of sustainable energy allows for a great deal of creativity in coming up with a technical solution to the problem,” Dunnmon said. “But there is also a lot of great research that doesn’t get implemented. Public policy is one of the major reasons, and that is why I am interested in both areas.”
Dunnmon has also served on a committee that helped develop an academic certificate program in energy and the environment, and he is pursuing that course of study along with his two majors.
Professor Jonathan Protz in mechanical engineering has been one of his mentors. He will be continuing this line of research in microturbines as a Pratt Undergraduate Research Fellow under the direction of Earl Dowell, William Holland Hall Professor of mechanical engineering and materials science.
When his is not working on microturbines or the economics of energy, Dunnmon sings with Chapel choir.
Duke junior Nicholas Altemose also received a Goldwater scholarship for his research in genomics.