The complexity and efficiency of the power plant is the most interesting aspect of my internship.
How did you find the internship? What was the interview process like? The director of the Physics and Engineering Department at Frostburg State University emailed and recommended applying. The interview process involved a board of engineers and team leaders. Typical interview questions were asked but eventually it ended up being a session of throwing ideas back and forth.
What have been the most interesting aspects of your internship? The complexity and efficiency of the power plant is the most interesting aspect of my internship. AES is an energy and utility company that owns and operates a coal-fired co-generation power plant in Cumberland, MD. Carbon fuels are converted through multiple thermodynamic cycles to get as much energy out of them as possible. Over the summer I organized and indexed drawings and analyzed data to increase efficiency of limestone burning and beverage grade CO2 production. I also contributed in testing components of the boiler system for O2 leaks and helped perform routine maintenance at the CO2 recovery plant. AES genuinely cares about limiting emissions and moving forward to renewable energy sources.
What campus activities or courses do you think helped you, or would have helped you, with this internship? I worked a lot with engineering drawings and data analysis so any course that involved those two things really helped out. Probability and Statistics is a course I wish I had already completed, as well as fluid mechanics.
How would you describe the company culture? What was the most helpful thing your supervisor did to make you feel comfortable at the organization? Morale is high within the company; AES spoils their employees. My supervisor assured me that they were very flexible if I wanted to continue working during academic semesters. That made me feel really comfortable.