Grad student Garrow finalist in SWE competition


Garrow (right) with SWE president Jonna Gerken.
Garrow (right) with SWE president Jonna Gerken.
MSME candidate Sarah Garrow was a finalist in the Graduate Student Rapid Fire Competition at the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) WE17 conference last month in Austin, Texas.

Placing third in the four-minute competition, Garrow presented on “Dynamic Modeling for Battery Electric Vehicle Thermal Management Systems,” research which is funded by the Center for Power Optimization of Electro-Thermal Systems (POETS). 

This research focuses on the challenges seen in battery electric vehicles (BEVs), including high consumption of battery power by the vehicle’s HVAC system, which aids in maintaining the thermal constraints of the lithium-ion battery pack. Garrow is working to develop a controls-oriented dynamic model that captures the thermal and electrical behavior of a transcritical vapor compression system (VCS), enabling rapid design and testing of a BEV thermal management and control system. Her modeling and simulations have shown an approach that is highly customizable to different vehicles, battery pack configurations, and operating conditions.

Garrow earned a bachelor’s degree in agricultural engineering in 2016 from Illinois, and is a researcher in Professor Andrew Alleyne’s lab.