Campus Map

James Joslin

Senior Mechanical Engineer






James Joslin joined the ocean engineering team at APL-UW in the summer of 2015 after four years in the UW Mechanical Engineering Department. His research interests include marine renewable energy, instrumentation for environmental monitoring, underwater vehicles, robotics, and hydrodynamics. James supports a wide variety of marine projects from system design and fabrication to the management of field deployments and testing.

In addition to his research, James is actively pursuing the commercialization of technologies developed at APL-UW through a University of Washington spinoff.

Department Affiliation

Ocean Engineering


B.S. Mechanical Engineering, Dartmouth College, 2005

M.S. Mechanical Engineering, Dartmouth College, 2007

Ph.D. Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington, 2015


Persistent Environmental Monitoring Near an Operational Wave Energy Converter

In the first demonstration of the technology, the WEC supplied all the power needed by the multi-sensor Adapatable Monitoring Package.

More Info

15 Jul 2019

For over 6 months, ocean environment observations were captured by the sensor package powered only by the ocean waves at the U.S. Navy Wave Energy Test Site off Oahu, HI.

Here, offshore Hawaii, the Navy is interested to understand the risk of interactions between wave energy conversion devices and marine animals, especially humpback whales. During its deployment the acoustic, sonar, photo, and video sensors detected, characterized, and recorded marine animals (no whales) relying only on the wave power captured by and converted to electricity by the Fred. Olsen BOLT Lifesaver buoy.

Wave Energy Buoy that Self-deployes (WEBS)

The Wave Energy Buoy that Self-deploys (WEBS) converts surface wave energy to mechanical and electrical power. WEBS is an easily deployed power station that can operate anywhere in the off-shore environment. Potential applications include power sensor payloads for scientific instrumentation; power station for autonomous systems, undersea vehicles, and/or surface vessels; and communications relay.

Research collaborators are the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute and Columbia Power Technologies.

13 Dec 2016


2000-present and while at APL-UW

Station-keeping simulation of a non-moored WEC

Rusch, C., B. Polagye, J. Joslin, and A. Stewart, "Station-keeping simulation of a non-moored WEC," Proc., 4th Marine Energy Technology Symposium, 25-27 April, Washington, D.C. (2016).

More Info

25 Apr 2016

While most concepts for wave energy revolve around anchored or tethered wave energy converters (WECs), untethered WECs may have broader potential applications. The lack of an anchor simplifies deployment and recovery operations and eliminates a component of the WEC that constitutes approximately 10% of the capital expense.

We explore the dynamics of an unmoored WEC using numerical simulations of a free drifting WEC under various environmental forcing conditions. The feasibility of device station keeping is also assessed.

Demonstration of biofouling mitigation methods for long-term deployments of optical cameras

Joslin, J., and B. Polagye, "Demonstration of biofouling mitigation methods for long-term deployments of optical cameras," Mar. Technol. Soc. J., 49, 88-96, doi:10.4031/MTSJ.49.1.12, 2015.

More Info

1 Jan 2015

Biofouling mitigation measures for optical ports can extend the duration of oceanographic deployments, but there have been few quantitative studies of field performance. Results are presented from a 4-month field test of a stereo-optical camera system intended for long-term environmental monitoring of tidal turbines. A combination of passive (copper rings and ClearSignal antifouling coating) and active (mechanical wipers) biofouling mitigation measures are implemented on the optical ports of the two cameras and four strobe illuminators. Biofouling on the optical ports is monitored qualitatively by periodic diver inspections and quantitatively by metrics describing the quality of the images captured by cameras with different antifouling treatments. During deployment, barnacles colonized almost every surface of the camera system, except the optical ports with fouling mitigation measures. The effectiveness of the biofouling mitigation measures suggests that 4-month deployment durations are possible, even during conditions that would otherwise lead to severe fouling and occlusion of optical ports.

Development of an adaptable monitoring package for marine renewable energy projects. Part II: Hydrodynamic performance

Joslin, J., B. Polagye, A. Stewart, and B. Rush, "Development of an adaptable monitoring package for marine renewable energy projects. Part II: Hydrodynamic performance," Proc., 2nd Marine Energy Technology Symposium (METS 2014), 15-18 April, Seattle, WA (2014).

More Info

15 Apr 2014

The Adaptable Monitoring Package (AMP), along with a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) and custom tool skid, is being developed to support near-field (≤ 10 meters) monitoring of hydrokinetic energy converters. The AMP is intended to support a wide range of environmental monitoring in harsh oceanographic conditions, at a cost in line with other aspects of technology demonstrations. This paper, which is the second in a two part series, covers the hydrodynamic analysis of the AMP and deployment ROV given the strong waves and currents that typify marine renewable energy sites. Hydrodynamic conditions from the Pacific Marine Energy Center's wave test sites (PMEC) and Admiralty Inlet, Puget Sound, Washington are considered as early adoption case studies. A methodology is presented to increase the AMP's capabilities by optimizing its drag profile through a combination of computational fluid dynamic (CFD) modeling and sub-scale experiments. Preliminary results suggest that AMP deployments should be possible in turbulent environments with a mean flow velocity up to 1 m/s.

In The News

Eyes Underwater Watching Aquatic Wildlife

Environmental Monitor, Karla Lant

Recent work from researchers at the University of Washington offers a promising new way to harvest energy from waves at sea and use that energy to power an Adaptable Monitoring Package.

9 Jul 2019

Converting ocean waves into electricity poses challenges—and promise

Columns Magazine, Jon Marmor

In the glorious Pacific Ocean waters off the windward coast of O’ahu, waves crash along the Kailua coast. But it isn’t just surfers who salivate over those ocean jewels. Scientists believe the motion of the ocean could bring the promise of something even more important: clean energy.

3 Jun 2019

Researchers in Sequim studying how new energy technology could impact fish

KING 5, Alison Morrow

Ocean tides could someday serve as a major source of renewable energy, but first scientists want to understand how the underwater equipment might affect the behavior of fish.

8 Apr 2019

More News Items


An Adaptable Monitoring Package for Marine Environmental Monitoring

Record of Invention Number: 47352

Brian Polagye, James Joslin, Ben Rush, Andy Stewart


21 May 2015

Acoustics Air-Sea Interaction & Remote Sensing Center for Environmental & Information Systems Center for Industrial & Medical Ultrasound Electronic & Photonic Systems Ocean Engineering Ocean Physics Polar Science Center