University News

UMass Amherst and National Institute of Wind Energy India Sign Memorandum of Agreement to Facilitate Collaborative Research

AMHERST, Mass. – The University of Massachusetts Amherst has signed a memorandum of agreement (MoA) for inter-institutional cooperation with the National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE) India on Wednesday, Sept. 22.

zoom mtg attendees
Row 1 (Left to right): Dinesh Jagdale, K. Balaraman, Kalpen Trivedi
Row 2 (Left to right): Krish Sharman, Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy, John McCarthy
Row3: Judith Chang

Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy attended a virtual event formalizing the agreement, along with Judy Chang, Massachusetts Energy Undersecretary; Dinesh Jagdale, Joint Secretary from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy; John McCarthy, Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; K. Balaraman, Director General of NIWE; Kalpen Trivedi, Vice Provost for Global Affairs at UMass Amherst; and a number of others.

Based in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, NIWE serves as a technical center of research and development excellence under the Ministry of Wind and Renewable Energy India. The University of Massachusetts’s Wind Energy Center (WEC) is the nation's preeminent wind energy program, which has been conducting research, education and training in wind energy for over 40 years.

The goal of this partnership with NIWE is to establish mutually beneficial collaborative research projects and facilitate the exchange of faculty, staff and students for short- and long-term visits for the purpose of research, teaching and presentation of seminars.

“The center takes a comprehensive approach, bringing together researchers who understand the technical challenges, environmental implications, socioeconomic impacts and regulatory hurdles of offshore wind development,” said Chancellor Subbaswamy. “They also prepare the next generation of energy professionals through academic programs and experiential learning opportunities at the undergraduate, masters and doctoral level – as well as ongoing up-skilling for offshore wind professionals.”

The MoA is the first step of a larger process of building strong links between the State of Tamil Nadu and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Indian states. Governments, research universities and the private sector are well-positioned to engage with entities around the world to achieve common goals, share best practices and insight. Massachusetts and Tamil Nadu are natural partners due to their vibrant energy economies, influential research institutions and robust private sectors. The collaboration is supported by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and the Center for Strategic & International Studies in Washington, DC.

Professor Krish Sharman, mechanical and industrial engineering and Endowed Chair in Renewable Energy at UMass Amherst, is the principal investigator for this partnership, which extends the global reach of both UMass and the Commonwealth.

“Climate change is an issue that is not limited to borders or regions, requiring strong partnerships with organizations around the globe in order for us all to successfully combat its impacts,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides. “Importantly, the NIWE and University of Massachusetts Amherst collaboration will greatly complement the Baker-Polito Administration’s ongoing efforts to implement innovative climate and energy solutions, further advancing our goals of fostering a more resilient Massachusetts.”