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Organizing Committee

Dr. Guangdong Zhu

General Program Chairs:

Dr. Guangdong Zhu
Senior Researcher
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Golden, CO


Dr. Guangdong Zhu is a senior researcher and a principal investigator in the concentrating solar power (CSP) program and geothermal technology program at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) since 2010. At NREL, he is leading research efforts related to linear Fresnel technology, solar collector optical characterization and geothermal/solar hybridization. He won NREL’s President’s award and Outstanding New Partnership Award in 2016. He serves as an associate editor of the ASME Journal of Energy Resources Technology.


Dr. Erik Koepf

Dr. Erik Koepf
Silicon Valley Technology Center
Dupont Specialty Products
Sunnyvale, CA

Dr. Erik Koepf is Applications Engineering Laboratory Director at DuPont’s Silicon Valley Technology Center, where he works with the engineering and scientific teams in support of high growth potential projects serving the Silicon Valley customer base, for example in the areas of printed electronics, flexible circuitry, touch screen displays, and high-speed communication. Before joining DuPont, Erik was Project Leader at ETH Zurich in the Professorship of Renewable Energy Carriers, and led the EU Sun-to-Liquid project’s development and demonstration of a 50 kW on-sun thermochemical reactor based on reticulated porous ceramic ceria structures. Dr. Koepf received his Ph.D. from the University of Delaware, and currently serves as Executive Committee Vice Chair for ASME’s Solar Energy Division, and as Adjunct Professor at Evergreen Valley College.


Technical Program Chairs:

Heejin Cho

Prof. Heejin Cho
Associate Professor in Mechanical Engineering
Mississippi State University

Dr. Heejin Cho is currently TVA Associate Professor of Energy Systems and the Environment in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Mississippi State University (MSU) and Associate Director of Institute for Clean Energy Technology (ICET) at MSU. His current research interests focus on analysis and modeling sustainable energy technologies for buildings and development optimal control algorithms for energy and environmental systems. Prior to joining MSU, Dr. Cho worked as a research engineer in the Energy and Environment Directorate at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA for three and half years. He has over 80 scholarly publications in the field of energy and environmental systems. He serves as an advisory editor of Energy Reports (Elsevier) and a guest editor of Energies and ASME Journal of Energy Resources Technology.


Justin Lapp

Prof. Justin Lapp
Assistant Professor in Mechanical Engineering
University of Maine

Dr. Justin Lapp is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maine, and director of the Solar Thermal Energy Laboratory. He is a graduate of Rose Hulman Institute of Technology (B.S.), Clemson University (M.S.), and the University of Minnesota (Ph.D.), and has specialized in heat transfer and thermodynamic modeling for high temperature solar thermal energy systems. Justin has performed research on the topics of solar fuels reactors, particle receivers for concentrating solar power, and high temperature thermal storage.


Mike Wagner

Dr. Mike Wagner
Senior Researcher
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Dr. Mike Wagner is a senior researcher and principal investigator at NREL since 2009. His work at NREL includes thermal systems modeling, system design and operations optimization, and predictive performance analysis of concentrating solar and power generation systems. Mike is a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) and the Rath Award for best thesis with greatest potential for societal impact from Colorado School of Mines.