Sita Syal is a PhD student in mechanical engineering and design at Stanford. Her research focuses on quantitatively modeling the uncertainty of humans in renewable energy systems. She is interested in how human uncertainty can be mathematically modeled and how that uncertainty influences engineering design outcomes of large solar and wind projects. Sita is a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow. Additionally, Sita has worked with communities to redesign how solar energy is implemented through co-design processes and co-founded a community solar developer startup, Shake Energy Collaborative. She currently serves as their advisor.
Sita grew up in Michigan and completed a B.S.E. in chemical engineering and an M.Eng in energy systems engineering, both from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She was awarded a Morris K. Udall scholarship in 2012 for her work in sustainability and clean energy. Additionally, she completed a semester abroad at Delhi University and studied rural and urban solar implementation throughout India. Her experience spans energy, from biofuels development to topsides process engineering. Before graduate school, Sita worked in the energy industry and served as a process engineer onshore and an operations engineer on one of the largest oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Outside of her academic life, Sita is passionate about supporting women in STEM fields and enjoys running long distances and playing her violin.