In this section, I provide a summary of my work history, with some sections broken out into dedicated pages for more detail.
While in school, I worked three semesters as a co-op at Southern States, a high-voltage switchgear manufacturer. While there, I designed, built, and tested high-voltage switchgear, including capacitor- and reactor-switching devices and load/line switching SF6 gas interrupters.
I spent a lot of time working on and learning about racing and cars before college, experimenting on my own cars mostly. Then as part of the Wreck Racing club in college, I led a team of students designing a low-budget race car with custom front and rear suspension, powertrain, and electrical system. I was personally responsible for the designing and building the front and rear suspension, vehicle wire harness, and EFI system (including calibration). I held the position of vice president one year and lead engineer the next.
After school, I went into professional racing, working for a NASCAR Cup team in Spartanburg, SC called HScott Motorsports. As part of the road crew, I traveled to all 36 races each year and to every track test.
Throughout the race weekend, I analyzed data and driver feedback to make vehicle setup changes that improved performance. I ran vehicle-dynamics simulations, instrumented the vehicle for tests, maintained our at-track IT infrastructure, and assisted with pit strategy during the race – first as Second Race Engineer for the 51 car then as Lead Race Engineer for the 46 car.
It was a small team, but our engineering alliance with Hendrick Motorsports and Stewart-Haas Racing gave us access to the best technology in the business. It was a terrific opportunity and an other-worldy experience at times.
I left HSM to get a normal job with benefits and a normal schedule. I got a job with Textron Specialized Vehicles (TSV), working on golf cars and utility vehicles. My team and I developed a new closed-loop EFI system to replace the carbureted fuel system in the majority of our offerings. This improved fuel economy and startup performance (no more choke), and the system automatically adjusts for altitude. As part of the EFI program, I updated the powertrain governor system to improve low-speed pedal modulation. I also helped design and implement a sound-reduction package for gas-powered vehicles after performing extensive sound testing at multiple facilities.
I’ve gotten more into electronics and computers over the past several years, taking computer science classes on the side and building various related personal projects. I enjoy working on control systems, automation, and data analysis. I like developing sustaining systems and strategies, and creating order from disarray.
Currently I lead an electrical engineering group at TSV. I enjoy learning from the team and getting to apply what I’ve learned in my online CS coursework. One of the first projects in this role was leading the development of our vehicle software validation, documentation, and release/revision standards. I’ve taken advantage of several opportunities to create software tools (mostly in Python) to integrate and process data from various vehicle testing – one that time-aligns data from two separate data acquisition systems, one that uses rolling regression to isolate steady-state conditions in engine testing, and another that assists in bill-of-materials analyses and creates graphs showing part hierarchy.