Advanced Energy is happy to welcome Charlie Phillips as a new motors and drives co-op through North Carolina State University’s Cooperative Education Program. Charlie was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is currently a junior at N.C. State. He is majoring in mechanical engineering and plans to graduate in 2021.
Since middle school, Charlie has been interested in sustainable energy and the cars it can power. These interests, along with his enjoyment of math and science, helped guide him toward mechanical engineering. When it came time to select a co-op position at N.C. State, Advanced Energy seemed like an excellent fit. He would be able to gain hands-on experience and work to pursue his passions.
Charlie joined Advanced Energy just a couple of weeks ago, but he has already immersed himself in the motor lab’s day-to-day activities. He has been working closely with fellow co-op Travis Kiser, who is in his third rotation, and Ronnie Alford, motor lab coordinator, to learn the ropes of handling, testing and logging motors. In all, Charlie will spend three semesters in the motor lab, gaining additional independence along the way.
When he’s not at work or in class, Charlie participates on the N.C. State SolarPack team. SolarPack promotes energy efficient vehicles by designing and developing a solar-powered car. Charlie is a member of the structures team, helping build the car’s chassis, body panels and physical components. SolarPack hopes to have its vehicle ready to compete this October at the World Solar Challenge in Australia.
The co-op program is a win-win for all involved: Charlie will gain first-hand experience that he can take and apply in the future (he hopes to eventually work in research and development in sustainable energy and electric vehicles), and the motors and drives team gets to mentor future generations of engineers while having additional support to grow its work.