Ashley McCullough

Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Graduate Student





Originally from Lumberport, West Virginia, Ashley completed her B.S. in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Pure Mathematics from West Virginia University in Spring 2023. During her undergraduate studies—under the mentorship of Dr. Fernando V. Lima—she developed algorithms that leverage existing land infrastructure and locational weather factors to propose and analyze the siting of potential renewable power plants in Appalachia. Additionally, Ashley has experience in industrial R&D engineering consulting, having developed advanced process control techniques and led design of experiments for a variety of client processes. In Fall 2023, Ashley began pursuing her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering, and joined both the Avraamidou and Zavala research groups at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Outside of her educational and professional experiences, she enjoys hiking, art, and exploring the music scene in and around Madison, Wisconsin.


To aid in the transition toward cleaner energy solutions, Ashley’s research interests are centered around the application of multi-scale optimization techniques to develop current and new electricity markets at various time resolutions—identifying new profit paradigms for participating electricity producers and storage technologies. She hopes that her work will both develop strategies to stabilize the integration of more stochastic renewable energy resources in the grid, as well as identify load-shifting technologies that best bridge the gap between the power and chemical sectors that participate in these electricity markets. Ashley is also interested in the ways that policy can accelerate this energy transition, with the goal of applying these optimization principles to the design of new markets with consideration of government incentive.