Dr. Harold T Evensen

Profile image for Dr. Harold T Evensen

Contact Info

285 Sesquicentennial Hall
1000 Southwest Rd
Platteville, WI 53818

Campuses and Colleges

  • UW-Platteville
  • Engineering, Mathematics and Science

Department Info

0285 Sesquicentennial Hall



The 5th Annual UW-Platteville Holiday Toy Hack was held on Saturday, November 19, 2022, from 1:00 - 4:00 PM!  It was be held for the first time in the new Huff Family Innovation Center in the new engineering building (Sesquicentennial Hall).   It was a success!  Over 50 student volunteers from across campus "hacked" (modified) electronic toys, to adapt them so that they can be operated with external switches and buttons.  This enables kids with special needs, who may not be able to manipulate the toys otherwise, to interact and play!  We donated these toys to families, clinics, and others who find them useful.  This included Variety - the Children's Charity of Wisconsin and families reached through The Arc of East Central Iowa and the Marshfield Clinic.

The university's article on this year's event is linked here.

You can help!  We put any donations to good use. (We purchase toys, tools, wires, connectors, and switches; see UW-Platteville Foundation -- use Toy Hack Project #R1075... or, Venmo @UWP_ToyHack !  Note, this method is not tax-deductible.) 
* Any questions? Please feel free to email Prof. Evensen.

2022 Flyer - volunteers (explanation, pictures)
2022 flyer - recipients (toy requests; explanation, pictures, links)

We welcome student volunteers from all majors and all parts of campus!  We have had student participants from all colleges – we have something for everyone, and can “train you up!”  

Recipients, past and future, please feel free to contact Prof. Evensen with any feedback.  
We are looking to identify individuals and organizations, and the type of toys they would like that would require some adaptive modification.  

Videos!  See our toys in action.




Professional Background

His more recent research areas include:

  • Carbon nanotube-based electronics:  self-assembly of semiconducting carbon nanotube films, and application of these to electronics and sensors.  
    • Read about some of my students here and here.
  • Automated rotational grazing (video here): funded by the Dairy Innovation Hub, this project tries to automate the movement and tracking of a dairy herd.
  • Industry 4.0 / Mechatronics / Internet of Things:  
    • I've been working with several students in our "I40" lab, on advanced automation, including machine vision, robot arms, and cloud-based data collection.  
      • Two students made a tic-tac-toe game with a FANUC robot arm; video is here.
      • Now currently working on Pong!  Stay tuned...
    • Also, we've been working with faculty and industry advisors to develop curriculum related to the Internet of Things, and related areas.
  • At present (2021-2022), I am on sabbatical at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, working in the Materials Science & Engineering department with Professor Mike Arnold's Advanced Materials for Energy and Electronics group.  I'm presently workign on nanolithography of graphene nanoribbons, and look forward to bringing some projects back to Platteville with me!

Educational Background

Dr. Evensen earned his PhD and Master of Science in Engineering Physics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and his Bachelor of Science in Applied Physics from Michigan Technological University.

Dr. Evensen's thesis work was in the area of experimental plasma physics and nuclear fusion. While working as a postdoctoral research associate in the Electrical Engineering department at the University of Washington, he worked on automation applied to DNA sequencing.