Electric Power Research in Skellefteå began when Martin Lundmark managed to attract the international electric power profile Math Bollen to Skellefteå, which gave the group a strong academic legitimacy. During the leadership of Math Bollen, the university's reserach in Electric Power Engineering has had a steady development with strong support from the industry, not least Skellefteå Kraft. For a number of years, the group has given a Bachelor of Science in Electric Power Engineering, an education supported by the electric power industry in order to meet the industry's needs for electrical power engineers.
Popular PhD position
In 2014 Electric Power Engineering became a research subject with Math Bollen as Chair Professor. The group's international commitment is strong and Math and his colleagues are now in a position where they strongly contribute to the development of the electric power research field. A sign of the group's status is the response they got when new doctoral students were to be recruited.
– When we put out an ad that we were looking for graduate students, we received 93 applications, most of them from abroad. It is gratifying that so many want to do research with us. Our research focuses on elctric power quality and to examine how the transition to a sustainable energy system affects the power grid. The power grid should not be an unnecessary obstacle that transition, says Math Bollen, Chari Professor at the research subject Electric Power Engineering at Luleå University of Technology.
A perfect piece of the puzzle
The 10th anniversary gathered people from both academia and the electric power industry and offered interesting presentations, including Math Bollen's inaugural lecture. The Head of Department at Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Elisabet Kassfeldt, also gave a presentation in which she was glad that they have now reached the goal of making Electric Power Engineering a research subject at the university.
– After we looked at the Math Bollen's merits, it was obvious that we wanted to recruit him as Chair Professor at Luleå University of Technology. With the recruitment of Math Bollen, Electric Power Engineering has now taken the final step and become a research subject, which we are delighted with. We have seen how he and the group has achieved success internationally, and that they have been adept at attracting financiers.
– Electric Power Engineering fits very well into the university's profile and it is a perfect puzzle for Renewable Energy, one of our strong research and innovation areas. In terms of future challenges, it will be important to attract even more students to the Bachelor of Science Programme in Electric Power Engineering, says Elisabet Kassfeldt.
A job that would suit women
Yvonne Ruwaida, State Secretary at the Ministry of Environment, last year finished the Bachelor in Electric Power Engineering and belonged to the first group of graduates at the programme. She gave her view on the challenge of attracting younger people to the industry.
– It is not a field that is easily explained and the path to understanding can be quite long. It is also difficult to find literature in electrical power, and one must often rely on fairly complicated manuals. If you are not within the industry the field is simply not that accessible. However, I think the journey is well worth doing, and I know that the job as an electrical power engineer would suit many of my female friends. You need to be curious, to take responsibility and have analytical abilities - then you have the prerequisites for a career in electrical power.