Sustainable Energy Research and Education in the University of Utah’s Department of Mechanical Engineering focuses on developing clean energy systems, including direct energy production, energy storage, and the integration of energy efficient technologies. Core strengths include wind energy, thermophotovoltaic power generation, computational analysis and data sciences, multi-scale heat transfer (nano to geologic scales), and energy storage.

Faculty and Labs

Marc Calaf
Lab – Wind Energy & Turbulence

The Wind Energy and Turbulence laboratory was designed to improve the current understanding of wind energy harvesting. To achieve this goal we dedicate much of our efforts to develop new knowledge on the turbulent atmospheric boundary layer. Our focus resides on using high resolution numerical simulations which we ultimately complement with the analysis of experimental data.

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Mathieu Francoeur
Lab – Radiative Energy Transfer

Research at the RETL is multidisciplinary at the interface of mechanical engineering, applied physics, electrical engineering, materials science and mathematics. Current applications of interests include thermophotovoltaic power generation, near-field radiative heat transfer modeling in 3D complex geometries, design of materials with unique radiative properties, optical characterization of nanostructures, near-field thermal spectroscopy and radiation-conduction transition.

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Pania Newell
Lab – Integrated Multi-Physics Laboratory

Investigating multi-physics, multi-scale phenomena through integrating theoretical, experimental, computational analysis combined with data sciences.

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Eric Pardyjak

The work done at the Environmental Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at the University of Utah attempts to further the understanding of transport phoenomena in the natural world. To this end, the laboratory employs a variety of state of the art scientific investigation techniques including: large scale field measurements (both Urban and Natural Environment), numerical modeling and simulation, and laboratory scale measurements.

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Keunhan (Kay) Park
Lab – Utah Nano-Energy

Focuses on research and education of nanoscale energy transport and conversion processes. Our research interests include fundamental physics of thermal, electrical, and photonic energy interactions at nanoscales, nanostructure-based energy applications, nanoscale thermophysical instrumentations, and tip-based nanoimaging and spectroscopy.

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Sameer Rao

Research Interests include: Multiscale heat & mass transfer, Energy conversion & storage, Water harvesting & purification, and Thermal management.

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Kent Udell

Development of sustainable energy production and storage. Hybrid solar thermal/PV conversion. Thermochemical batteries to returned stored thermal energy for food processing heating, cooling and refrigeration. Dry Steam Geothermal batteries to store solar thermal energy for 24 hour operation of solar power plants. Ground source heat pump wellbore design. Soil freezing for summer air conditioning.

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Roseanne Warren
Lab – Advanced Energy Innovations

The mission of our group is to pioneer new nanoscale manufacturing methods that will improve the future of society. Our two primary areas of focus are: 1) electrochemical energy storage devices (batteries & supercapacitors), and 2) micro/nanofluidic technologies for manufacturing and human health applications.

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