During winter quarter 2014,
Dr. John Carter taught a course entitled Mathematical Models
of Wave-Energy Extraction. The course was listed as a 300-level
course in the Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, and Electrical &
Computer Engineering Departments. During the quarter we studied models of
water waves, wave-energy extraction devices, the associated
mathematics and engineering, and Chilean culture. After ten weeks of
preparation, both mathematical and cultural, we were ready to head to
Chile to learn from experts in the Department of Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering at the
Pontific Catholic University of Chile ("La Catolica"). This
department was chosen because of its excellent reputation and because
of the cutting-edge wave-energy research being done there. The Chile
portion of the course officially began the morning of Sunday, March
23rd and ended the night of Saturday, March 29th. The week was packed
with mathematics, engineering, science, and culture.
| On Sunday (the first
official day of the course) we spent some time in the sculpture park next
to the Rio Mapocho and went to lunch at a restaurant named
Liguria in the Providencia neighborhood. After lunch we went on a
four-hour, guided walking tour of Santiago. Our guide, Antonio, was
excellent! The sun was shining and it was HOT (in the low 90s). The
weather was a nice change from Seattle's rain and clouds. We spent as
much time as possible outside!
Monday morning we got up, fought our way through the crowded subway, and made it to the San Joaquin campus. Dr. Rodrigo Cienfuegos gave a talk entitled "Introduction to Marine Energy: From Mathematics to Engineering." After class, Maricarmen Guerra Paris gave us a tour of campus. We ate lunch in the campus cafeteria and spent the afternoon exploring San Cristobal Hill and the Barrio Bellavista neighborhood.
Tuesday morning we headed to campus where we got on a bus and traveled to La Estacion Costera de Investigaciones Marinas. Located in Las Cruces, ECIM is a marine research and teaching laboratory associated with the Pontific Catholic University of Chile. It is located right above the water, facing west on a rocky outcropping looking out over the Pacific Ocean. Dr. Cristian Escauriaza gave a presentation entitled "Turbulent Flows and New Challenges in Complex Fluvial Systems." After lecture, a post-doc gave us a tour of the facility. We had a large Chilean lunch at a beach restaurant before heading to Isla Negra, one of the many homes of Pablo Neruda (Chilean poet who received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1971). That night we went to Aji Seco II, a Peruvian restaurant in Santiago. We had a fantastic time eating and getting to know the Chilean students that had joined us for the day.
We spent Wednesday morning
at Museo de la Memoria y los
Derechos Humanos (Museum of Memory and Human Rights). It is a
space dedicated to giving visibility to the human rights violations
committed by the Chilean government between 1973 and 1990. It is an
incredibly powerful museum and was one of the highlights of our trip.
We spent the afternoon exploring Plaza de Armas, La Moneda (the
Chilean "White House"), and Santa Lucia. We ended the day with dinner
at the hotel.
Thursday was our longest day. We headed to campus first thing in the morning. Maricarmen gave a two-hour lecture entitled "Tidal currents and tidal energy extraction" and then Juan Carlos Dominguez gave a talk entitled "Wave energy." We had chacareros (beef sandwich with tomatoes, green beans, and peppers) for lunch and spent the afternoon in the Dominicos Market. We had dinner with the Chilean faculty at Meson Nerudiano. We had a great time!
Friday morning we attended
lectures by Dr. Philippe Bonneton, "Nonlinear Shallow Wave Equations"
and Dr. Natalie Bonneton, "Field Measurements at Sea." They are from
Bordeaux, France and are spending their sabbaticals working at La
Catolica. We were fortunate that our trip overlapped with their
stay. We thanked the Chileans and said our goodbyes before heading
back to the Providencia neighborhood for lunch. We spent the
afternoon at the Museum of Precolombian Art and had a relaxing dinner
at the hotel.
Saturday morning another shuttle bus picked us up and we headed to Cascada de las Animas, a nature sanctuary in the Maipo Canyon in the Andes. We had a quick breakfast in a restaurant over looking the river and then went on a three-hour guided hike through the Andes. It was sunny and the views were incredible. After the hike we had a slow, relaxing lunch before the shuttle took us back to Santiago. We said our goodbyes at the hotel and headed to the airport for our flights back to Seattle. Some of our flights were oversold, so a handful of students volunteered to spend an extra day in Chile and fly business class the next day!
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