User:Nate Preston

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Solar cellt.png This user is a member with interest and knowledge of Photovoltaics.
Nate Preston
Nate quebec city.jpg

Hi. Please feel free to drop me a line

You can learn much more about me at my LinkedIn Page


Queen's University Engineering Physics StudentEdit

B.Sc Engineering Physics (2010)

Recent CoursesEdit

  • Mech 425 Engineering for Sustainable Development
  • Phys 483 Nanoscience and Nanotechnology
  • Phys 460 Laser Optics
  • Mech 346 Heat Transfer
  • Phys 455 Engineering Physics Thesis
  • Phys 450 Advanced Physics Lab

Current ProjectsEdit

Queen's Solar Design TeamEdit

I have been working with the Queen's Solar Design Team (QSDT) for the past four years. The QSDT has been building world-class solar vehicles since 1988. This year, we have a new mission: we're building a home. While our vehicles brought us to the forefront of innovation, our home will push us even further as we challenge the limits of green building and innovation. Our goal is to compete on the world stage in the 2011 U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon. I have led the team across Canada and the United States in the 2008 North American Solar Challenge, and am currently working with students from Queen's and Carleton University to prepare a successful bid to enter the 2011 Solar Decathlon.

I believe interdisciplinary design teams provide an incredible opportunity for students to apply their knowledge in a concrete and meaningful way. If we wish to work towards sustainable development, I believe it is crucial that engineering students learn how to develop integrated designs.

Engineering Physics ThesisEdit

Worked with Dr. Geoff Lockwood and Dr. Stephen Harrison to develop a PV array design which could be used in the design and construction of a Solar Decathlon competition home.

Engineering Physics ProjectEdit

Along with four other senior engineering physics students, I designed and constructed a small scale solar simulator to be used for testing photovoltaic and thermal solar technologies.


InterestsEdit

We as a global community are currently facing incredible challenges, environmental, social, and economic. The solutions we develop to meet these challenges will have profound effects on communities around the world for generations to come. I hope my education will help equip me with the necessary tools to contribute to the development of sustainable solutions to meet these challenges.

Some of the things I have been studying include:

  • Integrated Design and Systems Management:

Most engineering projects require expertise from a huge range of subjects (mechanical, electrical, civil, architecture, finance, medicine, etc.) to come together to produce a solution to the identified problem. Integrated design is the process of ensuring that all of these contributors are actively engaged with each other at each stage of the design, with the intent of developing a holistic solution which leverages the knowledge of all contributors. Design that is not integrated will produce systems and solutions that are as effective as the sum of their parts. Integrated design should ideally produce systems and solutions which are greater than the sum of their parts. For a great example check out the Whole Building Design Guide.

  • Building Integrated Photovoltaics
  • Engineering and Social Justice
  • Engineering and Education
  • Energy Policy
  • Effective Communication
  • Biomimicry

Some great books I highly recommend:
Natural Capitalism, by Paul Hawken and Amory Lovins
The Real World of Technology, by Ursula Franklin
Made to Stick, by Chuck and Dan Heath