“ECE Green Technology” was the theme of the 23rd annual ECE Day, hosted by the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) and its Industrial Advisory Board on November 5 in the Connelly Center. Lockheed Martin, Ablaze Development Corporation, The Art of Leadership, Caramanico Maguire Associates, Inc., Rumsey Electric Company, Serac Solutions, and Exelon sponsored the event, which was attended by faculty, students, alumni, industry representatives, and members of the public.
After an introduction by Dr. Pritpal Singh, ECE Chair, the following invited speakers gave presentations:
- A team of Villanova students headed by graduate student Sarah Barnett ChE ’09 described the growth and operations of PowerHouse, a student-run, residential energy audit business. Prof. Bill Lorenz ChE ’68 advises the team.
- Mahendra Patel of PJM Interconnection gave a presentation entitled “How Smart Is the Grid?” Patel described the technologies that are bringing about the revolution in the nation’s electrical infrastructure.
- So-called vampire energy, or the energy that home appliances and devices consume even when they are “turned off,” was the focus of a talk by Brian Zima CPE ’97, founder and President of Power Insight, Inc. Zima’s company is developing a product that will allow residents and businesses to monitor and control energy consumption.
- Dr. Christopher Pastore, co-director of Philadelphia University’s Engineering Design Institute and co-host of the Internet talk show Ecoman and the Skeptic, discussed the costs and benefits of solar energy with Richard Thompson, PE, EE ’64 of the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania.
Following a buffet dinner, Visiting Assistant Professor Edmond Dougherty BEE ’69, GS ’86, coordinator of ECE Day; his son, EJ Dougherty, BCPS ’92, GCPS ’01; and his daughter, Patsy Dougherty Stumpf BCPE ’00, GCPS ’05 chronicled attempts over the centuries to design the ultimate “green machine”: a perpetual motion device. The evening concluded with a poster display and competition by senior project teams.