The Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, in cooperation with the Marine Institute, has appointed Dr. Ralf Bachmayer as an associate professor in ocean technology. As associate professor, Dr. Bachmayer will lead a multi-disciplinary research team in the development of a world-class research program and provide leadership in the intersection between research and application in ocean technology. His research will focus on autonomous underwater vehicles and their evolving technology.
“There is an increasing demand for ocean data,” said Dr. Bachmayer. “The demand is driven by local as well as global environmental issues such as climate change, the decline of the fish stock, aquaculture and offshore developments moving into more and more extreme environments. Underwater vehicles could provide a safe and efficient way to collect invaluable information about ocean processes and seafloor in ice-covered regions.”
Dr. Bachmayer says he will focus on navigation and control, adaptive sampling and sampling technology.
In this position he will also build upon existing institutional strengths and foster research collaboration with researchers involved in the Faculty of Engineering, the Marine Institute, and within the ocean technology research and development community.
“Dr. Bachmayer’s expertise is an excellent fit for the School of Ocean Technology’s applied research arm,” said Dwight Howse, head, School of Ocean Technology. “His knowledge of ocean technology provides an essential building block to form successful research partnerships and to develop a strong internationally recognized research program.”
Dr. Ramachandran Venkatesan, dean, Faculty of Engineering, echoes his sentiments. “We are delighted with the appointment of Dr. Ralf Bachmayer whose research in ocean technology strengthens the expertise available in the Faculty of Engineering in the area of autonomous underwater vehicles,” he said. “This appointment also gives us an opportunity to consolidate and expand on our long-standing collaboration with the Marine Institute.”
Since completing his degree in electrical engineering at the Technische Universität Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe, Germany, Dr. Bachmayer has worked as a visiting researcher at the Deep Submergence Laboratory of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. He went on to complete his M.Sc and Ph.D. degrees in mechanical engineering at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, after which he joined the Dynamical Control Systems Laboratory at Princeton University as an associate researcher. In 2003 he joined the National Research Council Canada Institute for Ocean Technology in St. John’s as an associate research officer.
In his new role, Dr. Bachmayer will also educate and train undergraduate and graduate students in the field of ocean technology.
“Memorial University and the ocean technology sector in Newfoundland and Labrador offer unique opportunities to students and researchers to learn and experience ocean technology first hand,” he said. “Together with partners and collaborators at Memorial University, the NRC Institute for Ocean Technology, and the Marine Institute, I am planning to develop a curriculum in ocean technology that includes a rigorous theoretical background, complemented by a strong field component.”