Current Students (NC State):

James Reed, Ph.D. Student


James Reed is a Ph.D. student focused on the economically optimal repetitive control of renewable ocean energy systems in turbulent, spatiotemporally varying environments. Before entering the Ph.D. program, he received an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from NC State University in 2019. In his free time, he enjoys playing table tennis and playing with his dog.

Ayaz Siddiqui, Ph.D. Student


Ayaz is a Ph.D. student focused on utilizing tools from the machine learning community for real-time adaptive control in complex nonlinear systems that are not amenable to traditional parametric adaptive control techniques. His current work focuses on fusing model predictive control tools from the automatic control domain with Gaussian Process modeling tools from the machine learning domain. He is applying this adaptive control formulation to the path optimization of kite-based marine hydrokinetic energy systems in spatiotemporally varying environments. In his free time, he enjoys stealing his advisor’s keys.

Ben Haydon, Ph.D. Student


Ben is a Ph.D. student who is focused on the development of optimal control algorithms for renewably powered and renewable energy-harvesting robotic systems. His work focuses on re-imaging exploration/exploitation strategies from traditional multi-armed bandit problems so that they can be effectively used in mobile systems where mobility is limited by the system dynamics and is often also dependent on a stochastic, spatiotemporally varying environmental resource.

Kartik Naik, Ph.D. Student 


Kartik is a Ph.D. student who is focused on the combined hydrodynamic, structural, and control system co-design of kite-based energy systems (with a present focus on utilizing those systems for marine hydrodynamic energy harvesting). His efforts involve initial development of numerical tools for this co-design process, followed by experimental validation at multiple scales.

Andrew Abney, Ph.D. Student 


Andrew is a Ph.D student who is focused on the development of large-scale experimentally infused multi-disciplinary design optimization tools for marine hydrokinetic energy systems, which simultaneously account for hydrodynamics, structural mechanics, power conversion, control, and environmental/economic characteristics. His background on aerodynamics from his Master’s Degree at Purdue University, coupled with several years of industry experience in mechanical design (including Blue Origin) and passion for control, make this an ideal research topic for him to tackle.


Current Student (UNC-Charlotte):

John Borek, Ph.D. Student


John is from upstate New York and moved to Concord, NC for his senior year of high school before pursuing civil engineering at North Carolina State University. He eventually moved back home and transferred to UNC-Charlotte to continue his studies, but after an accident that left him paralyzed from the shoulders down in 2012, he took some time off to focus on recovering. During that time, he found a passion for mechanical engineering and resumed his studies in 2013. He has now graduated with a B.S. in mechanical engineering and a minor in mathematics. He is now pursuing his graduate studies under the guidance of Chris Vermillion. He hopes one day to leave his wheelchair and walk again, either by his own strength or something he creates to do it for him.


CORE Lab Alumni:

Ph.D.: Mitchell Cobb, Christian Earnhardt, Ben Groelke, Joe Deese, Alireza Bafandeh, Ali Baheri, Nihar Deodhar

M.S.: Chris DiMarco, Parvin NikpoorParizi

B.S.E.: Joshua Daniels, Jack Cole, Carly McKenna, Andrew Dahl, Kyle Tucker, Nathan Landon, Jared Sielaff, Timothy Muyimbwa (M.S. from UCLA), Shay Marceau, Lazar Trifunovic, Hannah Brooks, Brian Smith

High School: Linus Jacobs