December 2019 OES Beacon

Who’s who in the OES (December 2019)

Jenhwa Guo, National  Taiwan   University (NTU)

Jenhwa and his mother

Jenhwa Guo was born in Taipei in 1958.  He is a professor at the Department of Engineering Science and Ocean Engineering, National Taiwan University (NTU). In 1982, he took an M.S. degree in oceanography from NTU. He received his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, U.S.A. in 1991. His thesis was on robotic exoskeletons. In 1992, when he was hired to teach at NTU, he had a brief conversation with the Conference Chairman Robert Wernli at the Intervention/ROV ’92, held in San Diego, as a result of which he decided to join the IEEE/OES.  In the same year, he participated in a short course on AUV system design, held at NTU and run by Professor Tamaki Ura of the University of Tokyo.  He has since become one of Taiwan’s pioneers in AUV/ROV research. In 1998, he began to be involved in conferences outside of Taiwan, including the 1998 IEEE Symposium on Underwater Technology in Tokyo, where he met Harumi Sugimatsu, Lian Lian and others, who have become lifelong friends. In 2008 to 2012, he served as the head of the Marine Exploration Technology Division of the newly established Taiwan Ocean Research Institute, led by Professor Forng-Chen Chiu of NTU. His division was focused on the development of the first deep-sea scientific ROV in Taiwan, and has been involved in numerous unmanned underwater vehicle projects. He was the Secretary General of the 2004 IEEE Symposium of Underwater Technology, and of the 2014 MTS/IEEE OCEANS conference in Taipei. Since 2015, he has co-organized an academic group for the design of a 0.1 MW floating Kuroshio turbine, establishing analytical tools for the turbine design, and developing its mooring systems. In the summer of that year, he visited the laboratory of Professor Ken Takagi of the University of Tokyo to observe the Kuroshio Power Project.  Since then, he has been a member of the advisory board on underwater cultural heritage for the Ministry of Culture of Taiwan. This year, he was given a position on the Taiwan Transportation Safety Board, monitoring an investigating team for marine casualty events.  His research interests are the sensing and control of biomimetic underwater robots, the navigation of autonomous vehicle fleets for costal acoustic tomography, the design of ocean current power generation devices, and the use of AUVs in underwater archaeology.

Family photo taken when his daughter and older son graduated from college.
Jenhwa, Prof. Chen-Fen Huang (front, fourth from the right) and their coastal acoustic tomography team.

Jenhwa and his wife, Yuwen, have three children. His daughter works as a financial specialist for a Singaporean company. His older son is a chemical engineer for a semiconductor manufacturer. His younger son is a college student who is majoring in statistics. His beloved mother, Yuan, lives in a small town near Taipei.  He visits her every week. She is of an age at which she is entirely dedicated to her family and friends. Jenhwa realizes that his most valuable moments are those spent with the people who live and work with him. Now in his 60s, he can dedicate himself to his greatest passion of ocean research, working with his colleagues and graduate students. He is having the best time of his life!