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Expanding the Frontiers of Power Electronics: PELS Updates From the President

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IEEE Power Electronics Society (PELS) is thrilled to share some groundbreaking developments that are shaping the trajectory of our community. IEEE PELS is at the forefront of pioneering a transformative artificial intelligence (AI) initiative that promises to redefine the way we access and interact with the wealth of knowledge within our publications.

AskIEEE: Unleashing the Power of AI

We are proud to introduce AskIEEE, a cutting-edge AI engine developed in collaboration with HelloNesh and our very own Data-based Strategy team, led by Dr. Rakesh Kumar, IEEE Fellow. AskIEEE is more than just a search tool; it’s an intelligent assistant that harnesses the capabilities of machine learning and large language models to provide accurate and contextually rich answers to your inquiries.

The engine undergoes a sophisticated training process by ingesting various IEEE publication materials, creating similarity vectors, and utilizing a Large Language Model to generate responses. Currently, in the pilot stage, AskIEEE has ingested IEEE OpenAccess articles and materials from seven magazines, including our very own IEEE PELS magazine, the IEEE Power Electronics Magazine.

What sets AskIEEE apart is its ability to not only provide answers but also to reference the source article, enabling further exploration. This tool holds immense potential for our members, offering quick access to information and enhancing the overall experience of navigating our extensive database.

But, we need your help to make it even better! Visit with your IEEE SSO login, ask power electronics-related questions, and provide feedback by grading the answers. Your input is crucial in refining and optimizing this innovative AI engine for the benefit of our community.

Evolution in Conferences: Embracing the Virtual Horizon

There has undoubtedly been a proliferation of webinars since COVID. In fact, IEEE PELS is delighted to announce that it is hosting about one webinar a week via its various power electronic technical committees. In light of this proliferation of webinars, though, the landscape of IEEE conferences is undergoing a significant shift. In-person IEEE PELS conferences are adapting to ensure that the value they provide is unparalleled, particularly being a different experience than learning from a webinar.

An exemplary showcase of this shift was evident at the IEEE Energy Conversion Congress and Exposition (ECCE 2023) held in Nashville, TN, USA. The conference prioritized the attendee experience, offering unprecedented features such as the first-ever IEEE electric vehicle ride & drive event, childcare facilities, mentoring events, and expanded women in engineering initiatives. There was a marked departure from traditional conference formats, including adding country music bands, miniature golf, games at evening socials, and job fairs. The emphasis on high-quality food, extended coffee hours, and CEO-suite level keynote speakers contributed to a conference experience that surpassed expectations, leading to extended professional networking opportunities.

Furthermore, ECCE initiated its first-ever high school outreach event, including a wind energy turbine design contest, showcasing our commitment to nurturing the next generation of power electronics enthusiasts. In fact, more than 100 local high school students built their own wind turbines. They went beyond mere assembly, engaging in the intricate process of winding their own generators with various magnetic materials, subsequently testing their creations in the wind tunnel located in the ECCE exhibition hall.

In summary, the conference was a new experience for everyone, even while ECCE maintained its technical paper excellence with more published papers than any other power electronics conference in the world. These innovations are not confined to a single event but are being incorporated into upcoming PELS conferences, ensuring that we continue to set new standards in professional networking and knowledge exchange.

PELS Long Range Plan: Investing in the Future

As we chart our course into the future, PELS remains committed to adding value to its membership and advancing power electronics technology for the greater good. Our flagship outreach program, Empower a Billion Lives, continues to flourish and will continue for its third time in 2025.  However, PELS is also implementing new and smaller scale outreach projects, such as funding PELS scholarships, high school outreach events, and undergraduate student projects.

We invite all PELS members to be active participants in shaping the future of PELS. Do you have innovative ideas or a burning desire to contribute to our initiatives? Reach out to us at and let’s work together to propel PELS into new frontiers.

In closing, I encourage each one of you to explore AskIEEE, engage in our webinars, and actively participate in the vibrant community that is IEEE PELS. Your enthusiasm and feedback are the driving force behind our collective success.

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