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Photo of Dr Ajit C Pillai

Dr Ajit C Pillai

Lecturer in Autonomous Systems and Robotics


Telephone: 01326 253783

Ajit’s research is focused on the development and deployment of optimization algorithms to aid in the design of offshore renewable energy devices and arrays. He is currently working on several projects applying optimization and machine learning techniques including: the Supergen ORE Hub Flexible Fund Project Accounting for Current in Wave Buoy Measurements where the team are developing a novel optimization-based framework for considering the impact of currents on wave buoys; the ERDF Funded Marine-I where his work supports SMEs working in marine engineering in Cornwall; the Interreg France (Channel) England supported EUROSWAC project exploring sea water cooling systems; the Supergen ORE Hub Flexible Fund project Machine Learning for Low-Cost Offshore Modelling (MaLCOM) exploring the use of machine learning to improve wave forecasting methods; and several other industry supported projects.

He previously worked as part of the EPSRC SuperGen UK Centre for Marine Energy Research (UKCMER) on the integration of multi-objective optimization approaches in the design of offshore renewable energy devices allowing design trade-offs to be characterized and quantified. 

Prior to joining the University of Exeter, Ajit obtained an EngD in offshore renewable energy through the Industrial Doctoral Centre for Offshore Renewable Energy (IDCORE); a partnership between the Universities of Edinburgh, Exeter, and Strathclyde with the Scottish Association for Marine Science, HR-Wallingford, the ETI, and the EPSRC. This research completed in partnership with EDF Energy R&D UK Centre led to the development of a methodology and tool for the optimization of offshore wind farm layouts considering the sites and constraints relevant for future gigawatt scale wind farms in European waters. 

Ajit also holds an MSc in Sustainable Energy Systems from The University of Edinburgh and a BSc in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University.