Thomas D. Ashwill

Title: Distinguished Member of Technical Staff (Retired)
Company: Sandia National Laboratories
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States

Thomas Ashwill, Technical Staff Member at Sandia National Laboratories, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Engineers for dedication, achievements, and leadership in wind turbine engineering.

Mr. Ashwill obtained a Bachelor of Science in 1975 and subsequently a Master of Science in 1976 in civil and structural engineering with the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. From 1981 to 2011, he found success as a professional engineer with Sandia National Laboratories, a national research laboratory whose mission includes creating innovative, science-based, systems-engineering solutions to the nation’s most challenging national security problems, including issues associated with energy production.

Mr. Ashwill’s work initially focused (1980’s) on the design, fabrication, testing and analysis of the Sandia research prototype 500kW, 34-Meter Vertical Axis Wind Turbine. Since then, he has performed research in many areas of Horizontal Axis wind systems including innovations for the design of very large and lighter blades, structural dynamics including stability predictions using finite element analysis, mechanical systems, composite materials, fatigue testing, aeroelastic tailoring, and blade manufacturing. He managed the design and development efforts at SNL for several prototype research blades that included creations such as carbon fiber spars, off-axis carbon fibers for bend-twist load alleviation, very thick structural airfoils such as flatbacks, and the Knight & Carver 27m STAR blade that incorporated geometric sweep for load alleviation and cost-of-energy reduction. He also served on the ASME/AIAA Wind Energy Technical Committee for many years.

His work has received numerous accolades including for outstanding leadership in developing the Sandia Wind Turbine Blade Workshop.

Other awards include:

· The 2005 FLC Mid-Continent Region Annual Award for Notable Technology Development on “Aeroelastic Twist-Bend Coupling Design for Carbon/Glass Hybrid Wind Turbine Blades”

· DOE Outstanding Research & Development Partnership Award 2003 – For Valuable & Sustained Contribution to the Science & Application of Wind Turbine Blade Materials and Manufacturing Processes

Mr. Ashwill attributes most of his success to having the opportunity to work with people who are intelligent and motivated, whose guidance and mentorship played a vital role in his success. As a career highlight, he cites his scientific contribution as an author regarding wind turbine technology, noting that his work has been published in over 45 publications

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