The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) has recognized Ken Hellevang, a professor in North Dakota State University’s Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Department, with the Professional Engineering Institute’s Professional Engineer of the Year Award for 2018.
Hellevang, also an NDSU Extension agricultural engineer, received the award during the society’s annual international meeting in Detroit, Mich. The professional society, which has 8,000 members from more than 100 countries, recognizes one licensed engineer annually.
The society honored Hellevang for his application of engineering principles to crop postharvest engineering, energy efficiency, building moisture and mold problems, and restoration of flooded buildings.
“I am honored that professional engineers in ASABE consider my work worthy of being recognized,” he says. “My goal has been to use my expertise to educate and provide technical assistance, and I have been fortunate to have people supporting me who enabled me to excel.”
Hellevang has served as an educator and consultant internationally. He uses numerous methods, including publications, presentations, news releases, news media interviews, individual consultations and the internet to provide education and technical assistance.
In addition, he has conducted considerable research on grain drying and storage, including moisture content changes in stored grain during the summer, drying and storing dry edible beans, air temperature increases due to grain drying and aeration fans, and aeration duct design.
Hellevang also served as co-chair of the national Extension Disaster Network Flooding Team, providing and coordinating education and assistance to university personnel across the U.S. He was a leader in the national eXtension.org group, providing education and technical assistance to the public on flood-related topics.
At NDSU, he is Extension’s resource person for mold topics and structural flooding. He has developed videos and other resources for NDSU Extension’s flood website. He also has written publications on home moisture and indoor-air quality issues; these publications are distributed by universities and industry. He also is the author of the national Extension Disaster Education Network’s mold section.
Hellevang has authored or coauthored more than 220 technical publications. He was the lead author of the Midwest Plan Service’s “Dry Grain Aeration Systems Design Handbook” and co-author of the “Grain Drying, Handling and Storage Handbook” and “House Handbook.”
In his 39 years as a member of the ASABE, Hellevang has provided leadership to several ASABE committees. He served a term on the Society Board of Trustees and chaired the Meetings Council. He also has received numerous ASABE awards, including four Educational Aids Blue Ribbons, a Presidential Distinguished Service citation and the Young Extension Worker Award.