Professor Ahmed F. Ghoniem
Professor Ghoniem is the Ronald C. Crane ('72) professor of Mechanical Engineering and the director of the Center for 21st Century Energy at MIT. He holds B. S. (1973) and M. S. (1975) degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Cairo University in Egypt and a Ph. D. degree from the University of California, Berkeley (1980). He served as a research scientist at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory from 1980-83. Since 1983 he has been at MIT where he established the Reacting Gas Dynamics Laboratory and has supervised a number of M.S. & Ph.D. students, post-docs and research scientists. He is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and associate fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
His research interest lie in the areas of high performance computing in turbulent reactive flow, computational mathematics, combustion dynamics and active control, modeling and simulation of transport-chemistry interactions in thermochemical and electrochemical systems including high temperature fuel cells, gasification processes and fuel production and analysis of high-performance, zero-emission integrated energy systems with CO2 capture.
Santosh Shanbhogue, Ph. D.
Santosh does research in the areas of Efficient Energy and Clean & Quiet Propulsion. These lead him into fundamental research in Combustion Dynamics, Turbulent Combustion, Experimental Fluid Mechanics, Flow Diagnostics and Aeroacoustics.
At MIT, he is presently working on understanding and control of combustion instabilities in swirl and backward step combustors that burn carbon-monoxide/hydrogen/propane blends. He also oversees the design and devlopment of the Oxy-Fuel Combustion Laboratory.
Santosh earned his doctoral and masters degrees in Aerospace Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta. He received his undergraduate degree, also in Aerospace Engineering, from the Indian Insitute of Technology, Madras, in India.
Christos Altantzis, Ph. D.
Christos' postdoctoral research focuses on computational modeling of the reacting hydrodynamics in fluidized bed reactors with applications in the gasification of biomass. Christos earned his Ph.D. from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) at Zurich in 2011. His doctoral research focused on the influence of hydrodynamic and thermal-diffusive instability mechanisms on the structure and dynamics of laminar premixed flames. He received his Diploma in Mechanical Engineering from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece in 2007. He has been a member of the Reacting Gas Dynamics Lab since September 2011.
Jeff Hanna, Ph. D.
Jeff's postdoctoral research focuses on modeling and simulation of chemically and electrochemically reacting flow in high-temperature fuel cells, with particular application to electrochemical conversion of de-ashed coal in solid-oxide direct carbon fuel cells.
Prior to joining the Reacting Gas-Dynamics Lab in summer 2011, Jeff obtained his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology in 2010. His doctoral research focused on the effects of microstructure on transport within porous composite fuel cell electrodes. Jeff's research interests are in the field of thermal fluids, especially in regards to modeling and simulation of reacting flow systems, and with an emphasis on energy-conversion applications. He holds a B.S. degree in Engineering Physics, and M.S. in Engineering (mechanical specialty) from the Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO.
Konstantina Vogiatzaki, Ph. D.
Konstantina’s main area of interest is the development and implementation of advanced numerical approaches for turbulent combustion. Her current research in the RGD lab focuses on understanding and controlling thermo- acoustic instabilities in low emission combustors. She is also involved in the “Hybrid Concentrated Solar-Fossil Fuel Electric Power Generation and its Application in Saudi Arabia (HyCS-NPG)” project in the area of fuel flexible clean combustion systems.
Konstantina holds B. S. and M. S. degrees in Applied Mathematics from National Technical University of Athens (2005) and a PhD degree from Imperial College in London (2009). She has also worked as a researcher at the University of Stuttgart for one year (2010). After working as a post-doctoral associate at Imperial College for two years focusing on spray combustion she moved to the RGD Lab at MIT in January of 2012.
Mruthunjaya Uddi, Ph. D.
Uddi's research in the RGD focuses on study of clean combustion technologies such as using Ion Transport Membrane (ITM), Chemical Looping Combustion (CLC) and their practical applications. Laser diagnostic methods are being developed to study the physics of combustion in these areas along with other methods. Uddi has studied plasma combustion kinetics at Ohio State University for his Ph.D. thesis, developed Mid-IR absorption measurement techniques at UConn for RCMs (Rapid Compression Machine) and for plasma combustion kinetics studies at Princeton University during his CEFRC Fellowship at Princeton University.
Kushal's research focuses on implementing high efficiency computational schemes for direct numerical simulations of reacting flows with detailed chemical kinetic mechanisms. These include hybrid (implicit+explicit) operator split-stiff integration approaches for premixed flames and using adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) techniques for multiphysics/multiscale simulations. He is interested in the impact of the thermal coupling between the reacting fluid and the stabilizaing burner walls on the static and dynamic stability of the flames. In the past, he has also worked on combustion instabilities in a Rijke tube with a novel non-normal analysis.
He graduated with a masters degree in the Computation for Design and Optimization program (Center for Computational Engineering) at MIT. Kushal is a recipient of the National Talent Scholarship (India) and the General Electric Foundation Scholarship. He earned his master's and bachelor's degrees in Aerospace Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras.
John's PhD research focuses on fundamental understanding of combustion dynamics and its instability mitigation. He is currently working on the backward step combustor that stabilizes flames by sudden expansion and thus producing recirculating flows in the wake behind the step, with various syngas fuel conditions.
John completed his Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering at MIT in 2009, and he earned his B.S. also in Mechanical Engineering at Seoul National University, Korea in 2007. His master work is concerned with active control of supersonic impinging jet - which can be seen by Short Take Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) aircraft - using pulsed microjet actuators. He joined this group as a PhD candidate in February 2009.
The focus of Zach's current research is in the area of combustion dynamics, focusing on the coupling between acoustic waves and large-scale turbulent structures in swirling flows and time-dependent flame anchoring in swirling flows. He is also investigating passive means of suppressing instability in lean, premixed combustion systems.
Zach received a S.B. in Physics and an S.B. in Aeronautical Engineering from MIT in 2008 and an S.M. in Mechanical Engineering from MIT in 2010. Prior areas of research have included electric propulsion and the aerodynamics of human powered vehicles.
Cristina’s main interest is the sustainable, large-scale generation of synthetic fuels and electricity from coal. Her PhD work focuses on multi-scale modeling and simulation of gasification-based plants with Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) for the assessment of novel gasification concepts.
Cristina began her undergraduate studies in Chemical Engineering at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia and earned her Masters degree in 2007 from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg in Germany. Prior to starting her PhD in Mechanical Engineering at MIT, she worked as a research scientist in the Alternative Energy Lab of General Electric's European Research Center in Munich/Germany.
Gaurav is currently doing research on lean premixed combustion dynamics in step and swirl systems using Large Eddy Simulation. He received his B.Tech. degree in mechanical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi, in 2007 and his S.M. degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2009. He is also an IIT Delhi Institute Silver Medalist, and an MIT Presidential Fellow.
Addison's research focus is on modeling biomass combustion, pyrolysis and gasification. The current thrust of this work is to adapt intrinsic microscopic particle models previously developed for coal to biomass with an ultimate aim of being able to more accurately model biomass conversions at the reactor scale.
Addison joined the RGD Lab in February 2010 after receiving Master's Degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Technology and Public Policy from MIT. For his Master's research, Addison analyzed thermochemical biofuel production using a lifecycle methodology. Addison graduated from the University of Iowa in 2007 with honors and distinction earning Bachelor's Degrees in Mathematics and Chemistry.
Outside of the lab Addison has been engaged with the MIT Energy Club and Conference, serving as Conference Content Co-Director for the 2010 MIT Energy Conference and as the club discussion chair for the 2008-2009 academic year.
Anton’s PhD research involves developing the ion transport membrane (ITM) reactor for experimental characterisation of ITMs in oxy-fuel combustion processes, suitable for carbon capture. He will be working on the development of laser gas analysis techniques to spatially measure species around the combustion zone, to complement the modelling work carried out by James Hong.
Anton earned his Masters degree in Engineering Science from Oxford University. Before joining the RGD group here at MIT he worked as an offshore drilling engineer for BP out in the North Sea oilfields for a year. Outside of the lab Anton enjoys going on outdoor adventures.
Sof is primarily interested in the different technologies for efficient and clean energy conversion and utilization to meet the challenges of both sustainable development and climate change. His doctoral research focuses on novel hybrid concentrated solar-natural gas power generation systems. His work includes experimental an numerical investigation of fuel-flexible combustion techniques, with a focus on stability and low greenhouse gases emissions.
Sof earned his B.Sc from Ecole Polytechnique in Mechanical Engineering and Economics, while visiting MIT Microfluidics Lab (HML) in 2008. He received his M.Sc in Energy Engineering and Science from Ecole des Mines de Paris in 2009. After two years working as a consultant with Cambridge Energy Research Associates (IHS CERA), he was back to MIT, during the summer of 2011, for his PhD research.
Richard’s Master’s research at the RGD Lab focused on modeling the coupled particle scale, physico-chemical processes occuring during biomass torrefaction- a thermochemical pretreatment process. His present doctoral research relates to the development of models of fluidized bed biomass gasification.He joined the RGD lab in February 2010 after earning his B.Sc. in Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Zhenlong’s present research focuses on the numerical and experimental study of chemical-looping combustion with carbon capture.
Zhenlong earned his B.S. degree in College of Engineering, Peking University (China) for researches of high dimensional modeling representation (HDMR) method on combustion simulation. He has been a member of the Reacting Gas Dynamics Lab since September 2010.
Nwike's research interest is in modeling energy conversion systems with CO2 capture . His current research at the RGD lab focuses on modeling, thermodynamic analysis and optimization of Chemical looping combustion systems.
Chukwunwike got is Bachelors degree at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and an MSc in Mechanical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Katherine Mary Ong
Katherine's PhD research is in the area of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) thermal and electrochemical modeling. The purpose of this study is to determine how solid carbon could be effectively utilized as a fuel source for SOFC systems. Katherine earned her B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering in 2010, and her M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech in May 2012. She joined the Reacting Gas Dynamics Lab in September 2012, and is funded by the MITEI Energy Fellowship for 2012-2013.
Xiaoyu has just begun his PhD researches on splitting water by ion transport membrane.
Before studying at MIT, Xiaoyu did his undergraduate and master studies in Department of Energy Engineering at Zhejiang University, China, and worked on falling film evaporation and nanofluid fuels. He won the Chu Ko-Chen Scholarship in his undergraduate studies. Now Xiaoyu is sponsored by Chiang Chen Overseas PhD Fellowship for the academic year 2012-2013.
Elysia's PhD research focuses on the concept of solar reforming which can be utilized in hybrid concentrated solar-natural gas power generation systems. In particular, her work includes modeling and simulating solar reforming systems/reactors to evaluate and improve performance.
Elysia received her B.S. in mechanical engineering from Cornell University in 2010. In 2012, Elysia received her M.S. in mechanical engineering from MIT. Her master’s research also focused on hybrid solar-natural gas power generation systems with solar reforming, but with a focus on hybrid cycle systems level analysis and optimization.
George’s research focuses in the numerical modeling of Ion Transport Membrane (ITM) reactors. He develops novel computational models of the reactor in order to predict its performance, while he also validates them with the experimental results. His research includes the study of the mechanisms of oxygen transport through the membrane, the chemistry on the surface of the membrane and the oxidation reactions for different operating conditions of the reactor. He is also dealing with problems related with the optimization of the ITM reactor.
George joined the RGD laboratory in September, 2012. He holds B. S. and M. S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens-NTUA (2012). He has also worked as a researcher at the Parallel CFD & Optimization Unit (PCOpt) of NTUA for one year (2011-2012), while he was a member of this group for more than four years (2008-2012). During this period, he was developing state of the art optimization methods using continuous adjoint techniques for automotive industry applications in internal and external aerodynamics.
Akhilesh's current research focus is on modeling biomass combustion and gasification. He joined the RGD Lab in Fall 2012 after earning his Dual Degree (Integrated Bachelor's and Master's in Science) in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. Outside school, he loves traveling, and enjoys music and photography.
Le’s current research focuses on the capture and reuse of CO2 using high temperature ion transport membranes. His work includes experimental investigations of a simplified membrane reactor as well as the numerical modeling of the reactor.
Le is currently pursuing his M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering. Prior to entering MIT, he earned his B.S. Degree in University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has been a member of the Reacting Gas Dynamics Lab since September 2011. Outside school, Le enjoys playing saxophone, soccer and swimming.
Tianjiao’s current research interest is the experimental study of the chemical looping combustion with a focus on the characteristics and selection criteria of the oxygen carrier materials.
Tianjiao obtained dual Bachelor's degree in Engineering Physics and Mechanical Engineering from Ohio University in June, 2011. Her undergraduate thesis topic is on the surface reconstruction study of Wurtzite gallium nitride at low temperature. Outside school she enjoys travelling and most of the outdoor activities, as well as painting.
Ashwin Raghavan joined the RGD Lab as a Masters student in the fall of 2011. His interests lie in the field of reactive turbulent flows and combustion. Currently, Ashwin is working as part of a diverse team looking into the process of desulfurization of crude oil using supercritical water and is specifically looking to perform simulations of the multiphase turbulent reactive mixing process.
Ashwin earned his bachelor's degree from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay.
Nadim Walid Chakroun
Nadim's main interests are in the areas of clean energy and zero-emission integrated energy systems with CO2 capture. His current research focuses on modeling the oxy-gas combustion process for use in power generation plants for the purpose of carbon capture and sequestration.
Nadim is currently pursuing his M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering. Prior to entering MIT, he earned his B.S. Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University He has been a member of the Reacting Gas Dynamics Lab since September 2012. Outside of school, Nadim enjoys playing basketball and soccer and he loves to travel and discover new places.
Dominik’s current research focuses on oxy-fuel combustion for carbon capture. His work includes both experiments and numerical simulations.
Dominik joined the RGD Lab in September 2012. He earned his B.Sc. degree in Mechanical Engineering from RWTH Aachen University (Germany) in July 2012. His prior work has included turbulence modeling in CFD and modeling of advanced refrigeration systems. He is a recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship and a Scholarship of the German National Academic Foundation.