Wildcat Wind Power

Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas

Faculty Advisor
Behrooz Mirafzal

Student Leads
Brianna Wagoner
Andy Freshnock

What is your team name, institution name, city, and state?

We are Wildcat Wind Power, and we come from Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas.

Who are your faculty advisor and student lead(s)?

Our faculty advisor is Behrooz Mirafzal, and our student leads are Brianna Wagoner and Andy Freshnock. 

Why is your team participating in the Collegiate Wind Competition (CWC)?

Renewable energy is the future, and by participating in the CWC, our team can be involved early on in the technical design and advancement of renewable energy technologies alongside industry leaders, allowing us to progress professionally and further our vision of a greener tomorrow.

What is your vision for a clean energy future?

Our vision is for green energy to become the global standard. While the CWC focuses on wind energy, we believe diverse and efficient energy production from all types of renewables will play a significant role in transitioning the world to clean power. 

Five rows of students in matching shirts standing on stairs inside an atrium.

Wildcat Wind Power includes (from left to right) in the back row: Phillip Shirkey, Macie Sexten, Rebecca Semple, Israel Barraza; in the second-from-back row: Brianna Wagoner, Annalisa Ochner, Josh Pell, and Jose Rodriguez Millan; in the third-from-back row: Chase Glasscock, Cameron Million, David Pierson, and Jacob Ronnekamp; in the second-from-front row: Jakob Long, David Ochner, Parker Dawdy, and Kent Deterding; and in the front row: Jacob Lowe, Joseph Lilley, Michael Brosseit, and Josh Meurer. Not pictured: Andy Freshnock.

Photo from Wildcat Wind Power, Kansas State University

Describe your project, objectives, and game plan.

In this year’s competition, we are developing new turbine systems to increase efficiency and power output. Our priority is to create multiple prototypes that can be tested early and often to better refine our final design.

What makes you most excited about participating in the CWC?

We’re looking forward to seeing other schools’ approaches to the CWC’s challenges and are excited to obtain full testing metrics on our year-long project. Additionally, our team looks forward to the opportunity to talk and connect with like-minded individuals that share our passion for the wind energy industry.

What is your team’s strategy for success in the competition?

We are testing new design concepts in our wind tunnel to get real feedback on their effectiveness. Some will perform well and some will not, but the data will allow us to verify the efficiency of these concepts. We believe testing and learning from both failures and successes is the best way to create a turbine that is fully optimized.

What do you do for team building/to boost team morale?

We start every meeting with an icebreaker, like high-low-buffalo, which is a conversation starter that helps increase comradery among team members. We also organize team-building events, like bowling and cornhole. Overall, our goal is to make the team a welcoming place where students can build connections and work hard among friends.

This content was submitted to the U.S. Department of Energy by the team. Find more information on CWC 2023.