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Provided by ASME Logo The American Society of Mechanical Engineers

Power Division 100th Anniversary

The ASME Power Division celebrates its Centennial birthday in 2020. At its founding in 1920, Alex D. Bailey, then chief engineer for two of Commonwealth Edison’s largest and most important power plants, chaired the new division. The power industry was young and technically dynamic. Ideas abounded among engineers looking for ways to serve the growing demand for power by heavy industry. Consumers were buying and using all sorts of new labor-saving electrical devices for home and personal use. Power producers were looking for better and cheaper ways to generate and transmit electrical power to everyone who needed or wanted it. The leadership, innovation and expertise of George Westinghouse still loomed large in those early days, inspiring both his contemporaries and later generations of power generation engineers.

Today, we see similar dynamics at work in power generation, new and old sources of power generation meeting in a vortex of innovation as industry and consumers adopt new electric-driven technologies. Some see it as a second industrial revolution. We see it not so much as revolution, but as a continuation of an engineering tradition of responsive innovation and genius. The evolving focus of the upcoming Power Generation Conference provides a fitting tribute to the roots and traditions of the Division as we look to our energy future.