UW News

January 7, 2015

3 UW engineers make Forbes’ 30 Under 30 in energy list

UW News

Three University of Washington engineers were selected by Forbes magazine as part of its top 30 people in the world under age 30┬áin energy. This year’s list largely focuses on people who have produced inventions and founded companies with the goal of saving or conserving energy, instead of creating it.

Left to right: Shyam Gollakota, Baosen Zhang, Derek Sutherland

Left to right: Shyam Gollakota, Baosen Zhang, Derek Sutherland

Shyam Gollakota, an assistant professor in computer science and engineering, was selected for his work in powering devices without using batteries. He develops sensors that get power by absorbing small amounts of energy from ambient radio waves all around us. Gollakota last year was named one of MIT Technology Review’s 35 Innovators Under 35. Read more about his research.

Baosen Zhang, an assistant professor in electrical engineering, researches power systems and smart grids to optimize, control and integrate renewable and distributed energy sources. He was chosen by Forbes for his work to devise new ways of delivering electricity while making the grid more resilient. Zhang will arrive at the UW this spring from Stanford University, where he is a postdoctoral researcher.

Doctoral student Derek Sutherland is designing a concept for a fusion reactor that, when scaled up to the size of a large electrical power plant, would rival costs for a new coal-fired plant with similar electrical output. Forbes chose Sutherland for his work on many plasma-based devices at organizations such as General Fusion, General Atomics and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At the UW, Sutherland works with Thomas Jarboe, a professor of aeronautics and astronautics and of physics.

Toggle through the slideshow to see profiles of each of this year’s winners.