The Office of Naval Research awarded Trevor S. Hale, assistant professor of management, marketing and business in University of Houston-Downtown’s College of Business, a 2009 Senior Summer Faculty Fellowship.
Hale will spend July 6 to Aug. 22 in Oxnard, Calif. at the Port Hueneme U.S. Naval Base researching various logistics, operations and techniques in a concerted effort to improve the U.S. Navy’s energy efficiency.
“Basically, we will be looking at ways of reducing the Navy’s carbon footprint,” Hale said.
Assisting Hale in his research efforts in California will be UHD accounting student, Will Matthews, a UHD senior in the College of Business.
“I am looking forward to getting real field experience,” said Matthews. “I believe any knowledge you can get as an undergraduate outside of the classroom helps your career.”
The duo will perform research in the implementation and use of various renewable energies in conjunction with the navy’s efforts in smart grid and advanced energy meter deployments. One particular aspect of this research is somewhat of an arbitrage concept in which the navy could buy some undetermined amount of energy at night, store it and then use it during the day when the time-of-use rates are highest.
The navy is investigating the efficiency of using wind farms in the middle of the ocean, said Hale. The farms generate energy stored in saltwater batteries. The cost of energy is higher during peak load times during the day. It is more economical to buy energy during off-peak times at night, store it and use it during peak times. However, stored energy decays over time.
Nighttime temperature swings also impact the rate at which stored energy decays, which could influence any cost savings. The research involves the financial analysis of these factors.
“When an organization spends a billion dollars a month on energy, even a small increase in efficiency can have a real bottom line impact,” Hale said.
The Office of Naval Research sponsors the Summer Faculty Research Program for U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents who hold teaching or research appointments at U.S. colleges and universities. These programs provide an opportunity for faculty members to participate in research of mutual interest to the faculty member and professional peers at U.S. Navy Laboratories. There are three levels of appointment: Summer Faculty Fellow, Senior Summer Faculty Fellow, and Distinguished Summer Faculty Fellow. Stipends range from $1,400 to $1,900 per week for the summer program. At the discretion of the Navy lab, fellows can bring a student to the lab to assist with the summer research. The students’ stipends are comparable to those in the Naval Research Enterprise Intern Program. Hale said he has applied seven or eight times for the grant.
Hale’s research interests are in management science, production and operations management; location science, logistics, networks, graphs, supply chains and distributions systems; probability and statistics; simulation and modeling; and distance education.
His recent research has been published World Review of Intermodal Transportation Research, International Journal of Decision Sciences, Risk and Management, International Journal of Industrial and Systems Engineering, and International Journal of Operational Research.
The UHD College of Business is internationally accredited by the International Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, an honor achieved by only one-fourth of undergraduate business schools in the United States. It produced more than 800 graduates in the last academic year.
UHD is a diverse, four-year state university that offers a wide variety of undergraduate program and graduate programs in criminal justice, professional writing, security management and teaching. UHD is one of four separate universities in the University of Houston System.