Tom obtained his degree as an Electronics Technician E-VI from the U.S. Navy in 1982. He specialized in Navigational Radar Systems, Microwave Communication, and Surface to Air Computer Guidance Systems. After leaving the Navy, Tom owned his own business in Fayetteville, Ar., where he performed troubleshooting and repair on Micro Electronics and Macro Mechanical systems for 12 years.
He began working at the University of Arkansas in 1995, as Lead Electrician for University Housing Facilities, assisting with the installation of a fiber optic backbone for the communication infrastructure network systems. While working with University Housing, Tom became certified for the design and installation of Edwards Fire Alarm Systems and Electronic Access Systems.
Tom was promoted to Project Manager for University Housing in 2000. While overseeing the complete renovations of all resident Halls on campus, he was able to display a working knowledge and expertise of: HVAC, refrigeration, plumbing, communication, fire alarm systems, and electrical systems. Tom demonstrated his outstanding supervisory skills by the management of a large labor staff (including Student Staff of over 100), and in doing so motivated the team to accomplish the goals of the organization.
Tom joined HiDEC in 2008 as a Research Assistant. Some of his responsibilities include installation of new equipment, troubleshooting and repair of various systems and research. He helped with the design and installation of a complete PECVD and MOCVD system for the INB labs. In 2009, he was asked to help with testing of the recirculation power (REGENS) for NCREPT. During this time he also worked with the company, The Switch, in testing their power regeneration systems.
In 2010, Tom started CAD design work for Fuel Cells that could be built using LTCC and testing new ceramic cells. Tom has also completed instructional training on Photovoltaic Design and Installation, and now is able to teach the following: design, installation, testing, and troubleshooting of various PV solar array systems. He helped design and install a mobile PV system for “The Green Mobile” in 2011, to be used as an outreach training lab for students of all ages.
At the 45th Power Sources Conference in 2012 he lectured and presented a paper on ceramic fuel cells, “The Power Cube”. During this same time he helped with the testing and design of another ceramic application, “High Performance and High Data Rate Quasi-Coaxial LTCC Vertical Interconnects”. Tom began research into the fabrication of fuel cell Membrane Electrode Assemblies (MEA’s) for his ceramic fuel cells and by 2013 was testing a new fuel cell design using the MEA’s and LTCC. He has help with the writing of several proposals for funding in the areas of green energy using his new fuel cell designs.
New designs brought about the need for 3-D printing and CNC machining and by 2014 he has added these abilities to his research to produce additional fuel cell designs. In 2014 Tom attended the 46th Power Sources Conference and presented a paper on using ceramic fuel cells to replace standard battery packs, “Ceramic Fuel Cells in LI-145 Form”. Tom demonstrated the fuel cell operation at an outreach for middle schools at the 2hd Annual Owl Creek STEM Expo. During this same year he presented his work for special operations at SOCOM. Tom is currently working on a fuel cell system that also uses solar power to produce a green source of energy.