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Welcome to the South Carolina Institute for Energy Studies The South Carolina Institute for Energy Studies at Clemson University was founded by the State Legislature in 1982 to help South Carolina and the nation address energy related issues.


SCIES maintains a small core staff, who are responsible for leading and directing our research projects. We augment our staff with a team of faculty and students from across the University to ensure that we have the precise mix of talents needed to solve any energy problem. In addition, we receive administrative service support from the Offices of the Vice President for Research and the Office of Sponsored Programs. Key SCIES staff members include:

Robert Leitner, Director

Mr. Leitner serves as both the director of SCIES, as well as the principal investigator for all current projects. Prior to joining SCIES, Mr. Leitner was a Product Group Director at the Marine Corps Systems Command, with responsibility for the research, development and acquisition of all Marine Corps command and control systems, air defense weapons and sensors. Previously, Mr. Leitner served as the Assistant Commander Research and Engineering, with responsibility for engineering efforts on all Marine Corps research, development and acquisition. Mr. Leitner's 30 year career in the defense industry also includes 11 years as the co-founder and president of a small R&D firm focused on the development of new energy technologies for the military and as a program manager at DARPA.

Dennis Wiese, Senior Researcher

Mr. Wiese's primary focus is power generation and energy storage for mobile and stationary applications. Prior to joining SCIES, Mr. Wiese worked at General Motors for over 37 years, managing advanced development  and certification laboratories, as well as serving as the chief engineer for electrical and chassis systems on electric and advanced hybrid vehicles. Mr. Wiese previously supported Clemson's Mechanical Engineering senior design classes as an industry advisor.

Craig Campbell, Senior Researcher

Dr. Campbell focuses on new waste-to-energy opportunities, as well as approaches that improve energy efficiency and reduce fuel use. He currently serves as the technical focal point for South Carolina's first agricultural waste-to-energy facility, which SCIES is managing under SCDA/SCEO funding. Dr. Campbell also has a strong foundation in development and land use practices and policies, sustainable growth, and preservation of water quality, air quality, natural resources and natural landscapes based upon his prior work with non-profit conservation groups and the Strom Thurmond Institute for public policy.

Glenda Black, Unit Coordinator and Research Associate

Ms. Black is responsible for all unit administrative activities, including finance, contracts and human resources. In addition, Ms. Black also supports research projects in a variety of areas, including research, analysis, outreach and coordination. Since joining SCIES in 1987, Ms. Black has supported numerous projects.

Kim Davenport, Information Resource Consultant and Research Associate

Ms. Davenport is responsible for SCIES IT resources, creation and maintenance of databases, as well as oversight of the Energy Systems Laboratory. Ms. Davenport also serves as a research associate, responsible for collecting and analyzing data, supporting lab experiments, and documenting the results. She joined SCIES in 1998 and has supported a multitude of projects since that time.

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