Personal StatementDayananda Singh NongmaithemAt the core of every scientific venture lies the desire to understand the workings of the world and to enrich lives. Along the same principles, I was drawn to the field of Physics which makes even the most complex of problems straightforward and logical while facilitating innovation and individual expression.One of my fondest childhood memories was when I took part in the State Science Exhibition for high school students.
The variety of working demonstrations ranging from the solar oven to spring-mass systems intrigued me. My passion for Physics and Mathematics spurred me to win many awards at State level competitions during my high school years. This led me to major in Science during Higher Secondary School. Later, it served as an impetus behind my choice of Engineering Physics as my undergraduate major at the famed National Institute of Technology, Calicut. The methodical approach I have towards learning helped me to finally graduate with a degree in first class. My academic performance made me qualified for the Post-Matric Scholarship for Scheduled Caste Students, and I was awarded the same for the whole duration of my undergraduate program (2010-14).
During my studies at NIT Calicut, the curriculum exposed me to both theoretical and experimental aspects of physics with its varied applications in our modern world. Along the course of the program, I developed a penchant for courses like classical mechanics, thermodynamics, and statistical physics. They rendered me the necessary stimulation to conduct a literature survey on Tripropellant Rocket Propulsion System during the sophomore year.
Particularly choosing the course in Aerodynamics offered by the Mechanical Engineering Department became the turning point in my education as it motivated me towards switching my field of study with a greater focus on Mechanical Engineering. Attending classes in Aerodynamics aided me to gain knowledge of the closely related subject of fluid mechanics and sharpened my computational skills in Matlab for simulation purposes. This gradual realization of my inclination towards a more industry-oriented field prompted me to hone my research and technical acumen in Thermal and Fluid areas through my internship and senior year project.To gain relevant experience in an industrial context, I completed my Summer Internship at Airframe Aerodesigns Private Limited in Bangalore.
The project I worked was in thermal analysis and stress behavior on first stage gas turbine blades made of superalloys. I garnered profound insights into how nickel-base and cobalt-base superalloys at high temperature have variations in thermal stress and resistance to thermal creep. Thereafter I undertook the senior year project, which aimed at conducting thermodynamic analysis and preliminary design of a Stirling cryocooler employing a model simulated in Matlab. Working on the project enriched me with knowledge of viability of developing a miniature cryogenic device with more realistic values in power losses. Through in-depth study of the isothermal cycle and Schmidt analysis of the model, I was able to investigate the effects of operating parameters on its performance which helped in the optimization of its design.
Furthermore, to enhance my professional expertise in CAD/CAM discipline, I worked as a Graduate Trainee for six months at the Ministry of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises, Central Tool Room Kolkata. Equipped with software such as Solidworks, AutoCAD, and Ansys Mechanical, I attained proficiency, while working on CAD Projects, in drafting, design, assembly, kinematic and mechanical simulations. I acquired practical industrial skills on creating injection mold using Delcam and CNC machining.
Familiarity with modeling capabilities of Ansys Fluent packages provided me the fundamental understanding in solving real-life problems using the concept of finite volume methods. The experience widened interdisciplinary learning of CAD/CAM aspects involved in developing fluid/thermal components like the impeller.Besides academic endeavors, I learned varied soft skills while participating in extracurricular activities. During Tathva Techfest at NIT Calicut, I spearheaded a team of engineering students at the Delta Wing Aircraft workshop and flying competition.
There I refined my leadership abilities in coordinating teammates with specific technical aptitudes and successful completion of our project. In college, I volunteered as a member of the National Service Scheme in the Calicut Marathon. Additionally, since 2012, I have been a volunteer for a nonprofit environmental NGO called Alliance for development Alternatives-Manipur which raise awareness campaign on Sustainability among school children.Owing to family circumstances, I had to take a break from pursuing further education. Thus, I took the role of science teacher at a local high school and fine-tuned my teaching aptitude. After a year of tutorship, I worked as a Project Assistant at Sugnu Subdivision Office, Manipur State Power Distribution Company Limited and involved in construction operations related to power transmission, plan layouts and certifying contract works.Currently, the Energy crisis and Climate change are among the biggest concerns in the world.
My learning so far has instilled in me the drive to become a part of the revolution for widening the renewable energy sector, particularly the Solar Power industry which has many untapped potentials. In preparation for my Graduate studies, I have been taking and learning courses (heat transfer, solar energy: PV energy conversion, statistical thermodynamics etc.) from massive online open courses like Edx, Nptel and Coursera, and reading journals related to thermo-fluid sciences and applications. I aim to work as a thermal analysis or thermal system design engineer at a renewable company with research facilities after my Masters. In the long term, I aspire to see myself as a well-established expert in the field with sound management abilities while pioneering in futuristic research.A Masters (with thesis option) in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison will certainly quench my thirst for knowledge acquisition and facilitate gaining practical insights into current challenges in the energy sector through multidisciplinary approaches.
I am eager to be a part of the on-going research and development in the Solar Energy Lab at your university. It would be an honor to work with Professor Gregory F. Nellis, thanks to his unfathomed contribution to the fields of Thermal Systems, Heat Transfer, and Cryogenic Applications. Further, I wish to be a part of Engineers for a Sustainable World which would serve as a great platform for students who have interests in sustainability revolution and energy spheres.I look forward to being a member of your scholastic community, and I vow to put my utmost dedication and hard work towards living my dream.