Professor & Director
Ph.D., Chemical Engineering
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 1984
M.S., Chemical Engineering
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 1982
B.S., Chemical Engineering
University of California, Los Angeles, 1979
Dr. Fenton has been Director of the Florida Solar Energy Center since January, 2005, following more than 20 years with the University of Connecticut.
James M. Fenton is the Director of the University of Central Florida’s Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC), where he leads a staff of 90 in the research and development of energy technologies that enhance Florida's and the nation's economy and environment and educate the public, students and practitioners on the results of the research. FSEC leads national programs funded by the U.S. Departments’ of Energy and Transportation in: “Building America” energy efficient homes, Photovoltaic Manufacturing, Hot-Humid PV testing of large-scale PV to show bankability, Solar-Ready Vets and train-the-trainers education for solar installations, programs to decease the soft-costs of PV installation, Electric Vehicle Transportation (U.S. DOT’s only EV Transportation Center) and “Clean Cities” (alternative fuel transportation). FSEC, created in 1975 by the Florida Legislature to serve as the state’s energy research institute, is the nation’s largest and most active state-supported renewable energy and energy efficiency research institute. In addition to his duties as FSEC Director, Dr. Fenton also serves as a Professor in UCF’s Materials Science and Engineering Department.
Prior to joining FSEC, he spent 20 years as a Chemical Engineering Professor at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Fenton’s research activities in fuel cells, pollution prevention and sustainable energy are helping FSEC expand its nationally acclaimed research and education programs in hydrogen, flow batteries, alternative fuels, solar energy and buildings energy efficiency. He received his PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Illinois in 1984 and his BS from UCLA in 1979. He is the author of over 200 publications. He is Secretary of The Electrochemical Society, an Electrochemical Society Fellow and received the Research Award of the Electrochemical Society’s Energy Technology Division in May 2014 for his work on Automobile Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells. He served on Florida Governor’s Action on Energy and Climate Change Committee (2007-2008).