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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Power engineer to lead NMSU's electrical and computer engineering department

For the past 31 years, Satish Ranade, a professor at the Klipsch School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at New Mexico State University, has earned a name for the university's Electric Utility Management Program and its graduates as leaders in the increasingly critical field of electrical and power engineering. Recently appointed as department head, Ranade is taking on the additional responsibility of leading the department that also produces leaders in computer engineering, signals and systems engineering, and photonics and electromagnetics.

Newly appointed Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Head Satish Ranade stands in a laboratory on the NMSU campus, arms crossed over his chest.

"Professor Ranade's teaching exemplifies the many positive attributes that students hope to experience when they enroll at NMSU. His teaching style has not only made great engineers, but it has contributed to making great citizens. His leadership will inspire the entire Electrical and Computer Engineering Department," said College of Engineering Assistant Dean Patricia Sullivan.

"The department has always been known locally for producing excellent electrical and computer engineers and for serving our community. My goal is to increase our national recognition while maintaining that excellence in our undergraduate program and produce growth and visibility for our research," said Ranade.

Ranade joined the NMSU engineering faculty in 1981. He earned bachelor degrees from Saugar University, Sagar, India and the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, in India; his master's degree in electrical engineering at NMSU and Ph.D. from the University of Florida.

"I've always liked tinkering with mechanical and electrical things, so I pursued power and control as an undergraduate student," he said. "I really became gung-ho about it as a master's student in the power program at NMSU."

His academic role came more directly - his father was a professor.

Ranade conducts research on power system operations; optimization, control, and analysis; artificial intelligence applications; electric machine control and power electronics; photovoltaics; and water system electric use optimization. He has served as principal investigator for more than 30 funded research projects totaling more than $3.2 million.

"NMSU really is a pioneer in power research and experimentation with renewable energy," said Ranade. "We are uniquely positioned to contribute toward the development of reliable power sources and delivery to a varied customer base in New Mexico."

"I will continue to support the Electric Utility Management Program teaching mission. And to the extent possible, I will be involved with the microgrid research. There are others who are very involved in continuing that research: Sukumar Brahma, Wenxin Liu and Patricia Sullivan."

Brahma and Liu are assistant professors of electrical engineering and Assistant Dean Sullivan is an industrial engineering Ph.D. candidate who is doing her thesis on regulatory issues associated with microgrids.

Ranade followed Bill Kersting, the founder of EUMP, as Public Service Company of New Mexico Chair in Utility Management. He is the director of the Electric Utility Management Program, the only program of its kind in the nation, focused on electrical engineering and business management. He is a Klipsch Distinguished Professor.

He has also served as the adviser to the university Cricket Club, the Indian Student Association, the EUMP Graduate Student Club and the student branch of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers.

Widely recognized in his field of research, Ranade has authored four book chapters and published more than 70 refereed journal articles, conference proceedings and reports. He also holds a U.S. Patent: "Enhanced Distributed Energy Resource System." He has served his profession through the Institute of Electronic and Electronics Engineers in various leadership positions over the years, including the Power and Energy Education Committee. He has received numerous awards and honors from the IEEE and other industry organizations. He has also served his community on the City of Las Cruces/ El Paso Electric Franchise Negotiating Team.

Ranade is actively engaged in electric distribution system assessments for municipalities, rural electric cooperatives and major electric utilities throughout the southwest. His collaborations have led to the creation of curricula that provides hands-on experiences for students, partnerships that have enabled the modernization of laboratory facilities, and the creation of a dynamic, engineering-relevant curriculum.