Dr. Manhar Dhanak is the Director of The Institute for Ocean and Systems Engineering (SeaTech) at Florida Atlantic University, and the Director of Research for the Southeast National Marine Renewable Energy Center. He is a professor in the Department of Ocean and Mechanical Engineering with research interests in hydrodynamics and physical oceanography. Dr. Dhanak serves on the Board of the Southeast Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association (SECOORA) and is the Chair of the Florida COOS Consortium. He is a graduate of the University of London and has served as a Research Fellow at the Imperial College, London, as a Research Scientist at Topexpress, Cambridge, UK and as a Senior Research Associate at the University of Cambridge before joining FAU.
Dr Dhanak is one of the early users of autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) as mobile platforms for oceanographic observations, including measurement of ocean turbulence. He has participated in at-sea AUV-based observational experiments in the Mediterranean and off the coasts of Bermuda and Florida and has carried out research funded by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and the National Science Foundation. Dr Dhanak was the Principal Investigator on ONR's National Naval Responsibility for Naval Engineers program at FAU, is currently PI on ongoing ONR-funded programs in advanced autonomous surface vehicles and development of advanced-vehicle hydrodynamic assessment tools, a co-PI on a $2M project in ONR's Seabasing program, and a co-PI on FAU's Center of Excellence in Ocean Energy Technology. He has consulted on development of several outfalls off the US east coast and water intake systems for power plants in Mexico and the Philippines. He provided expert witness testimonies for a fatal air crash in the Bahamas and for wave-induced coastal damage in Baja-California. He is the author of several publications in scientific journals.
Dr. Dhanak has served on the Governing Board of the Consortium of Oceanographic Research and Education (CORE) and is currently an institutional representative on the Consortium of Ocean Leadership. He has previously served on the Boards of South Florida Ocean Measurement Center.