Texas Tech University

Our Story

NWI's Focus

The National Wind Institute (NWI) works to solve some of society's most complex problems by supporting convergent research in Energy Systems, Wind Engineering, and Measurement and Simulation. NWI focuses on breaking traditional disciplinary boundaries, assimilating new and diverse ideas, supporting the development and execution of large game-changing research concepts, and cultivating the next generation of leaders.

NWI's History

NWI's roots were formed following the 1970 Lubbock Tornado. With the inclusion of engineers, atmospheric scientists, and economists, the multidisciplinary team continued to grow through the early 2000s but remained focused on wind hazard-related research. An expansion into wind energy research began in the early 2000s, along with the development of the multidisciplinary Wind Science and Engineering (WiSE) Ph.D. program in 2003. NWI then evolved further to support related pursuits such as microgrid, battery storage, and grid management related research. In 2019, NWI reorganized to better represent the diversity of ongoing activity within the institute and lay a foundation to answer even bigger challenges in the future.

See a detailed timeline of the NWI.

What NWI Does

NWI develops and maintains a suite of state-of-the-art research facilities and space, provides access to technical and administrative staff that enable faculty affiliates to successfully execute large and complex research projects, and supports convergent teaming activities. NWI also provides multidisciplinary training to our graduate students to better prepare them to answer today's complex challenges.

To learn more, this link will connect you with stories featuring NWI's efforts in this area of research and study.  Follow this link to view a video introducing the NWI.

NWI's Structure

NWI does not serve a single department or college, but rather supports a diverse collection of faculty affiliates. This organizational structure amplifies the concept of breaking down traditional academic barriers to pursue convergent research on today's most complex problems and provides a central hub of support that positively impacts multiple departments, colleges, and the university as a whole. Internally, NWI is organized into three research pillars focused on Energy Systems, Wind Engineering, and Measurement and Simulation. Each pillar maintains a Technical Director, while NWI's Senior Director provides overarching strategy for the institute and the Director of Operations manages the various faculty support mechanisms.