Energy, Environment, and Sustainability Reseach at MEE

Research Faculty

Nandika D'Souza
Nandika D'Souza
Kuruvilla John
Kuruvilla John
Sheldon Shi
Sheldon Shi


  • Air Quality Research Laboratory

    This lab is used in support of field-based environmental monitoring of air pollutants. Measurement of environmental contaminants in the ambient atmosphere and indoors is conducted using state-of-science compliance grade monitors for ozone, fine particulate matter, oxides of nitrogen, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, volatile organics, and toxic compounds. In addition, meteorological parameters are measured using weather stations. Routine testing and calibration of monitors are performed here. The lab is also used for the development and evaluation of low-cost and low-energy portable sensors for measurement of environmental para-meters including concentrations of air pollutants in the ambient atmosphere.

    Lab location: F177
    Faculty/Staff: Kuruvilla John
  • Biosensing and Bioenergy Laboratory

    Dr. Reid develops and characterizes electrode materials and devices for bioenergy harvesting and biosensing applications such as biofuel cells and biosensors. Performance of these devices is highly affected by mass, electronic, and ionic transport through the electrode materials as well as at the liquid-electrode interface. By understanding these key factors, Dr. Reid hopes to develop new and improved ways to utilize and monitor bioenergy sources. His current interests include mechanical energy harvesting through reverse electrowetting, electrochemical detection of traumatic brain injury, and multifunctional sensing/energy harvesting devices.

    Common themes among many of Dr. Reid’s previous projects are 1) accessing untapped bioenergy sources within us and in our surroundings and 2) combining multiple functionalities into a single material or device. These themes can be seen in examples of previous research projects: a contact lens biofuel cell, a self-powered lactate sensor, and composites that have active surface roughness control.

    Research Projects

    1) Self-powered wearable sensors that operate by harvesting motion through reverse electrowetting
    2) Single-cell biological probes that consist of either pulled pipette microelectrodes or nanosphere fluorescent probes


    Lab location: F102A.1
    Faculty/Staff: Russell Reid
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics Laboratory

    The computational fluid dynamics lab focuses on the development of numerical methods including turbulent flow modeling using large-eddy simulation and detached eddy simulation methods, two-phase free-surface flow modeling, particulate flow modeling, fluid-structure interactions, higher-order discretization methods such as spectral difference, non-traditional CFD approaches such as Lattice Boltzmann Method, deterministic and stochastic simulation-based design and optimization, uncertainty quantification (UQ), and high-performance computing methodology. The code development and models are for ocean and aerospace engineering applications (ship hydrodynamics, drone aerodynamics, wave/winds, stratified flows, etc.), biomedical applications (heart flow, hemodynamics, etc.), and energy systems (onshore and offshore wind turbines, wave energy converter etc.).

    Research Projects

    1) Study the interaction of a dynamic system and particles using coupled discrete element method and CFD
    2) Novel immersed boundary methods for strong fluid-structure coupling for extremely flexible structures
    3) Development of methodologies to predict extremely rare events
    4) Stable Lattice Boltzmann schemes for stratified flows
    5) Simulation of supported cardiovascular systems to minimize eddies and stasis, and to mitigate thrombotic risks
    6) Modeling acoustics using acoustic perturbation equations

    Lab location: D206B
    Faculty/Staff: Hamid Sadat
  • Department Teaching Laboratory

    The Lab F158 is an undergraduate teaching lab for MEEN 3240 Lab I and MEEN 3242 Lab II courses. The Lab is equipped with the following apparatus to offer MEE undergraduate students with hands-on experiments covering a broad spectrum of topics of in instrument and measurements, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and heat transfer.

    Subsonic wind tunnel with completed modules (manometer, pitot tube, pressure cylinder, lift and drag balance, aerofoil, pressure wing, pressure cylinder and boundary layer plates). Computer controlled heat transfer teaching equipment (linear heat conduction, combined convection and radiation, extended surface heat transfer, unsteady state heat transfer, free & forced convection). Viscometer, cup viscometers, air viscosity measurement equipment, thermocouples, thermistor, RTD and data acquisition system.


    Lab location: F158
    Faculty/Staff: Xiaohua Li
  • Zero Energy (ZØE) Research Laboratory

    The Zero Energy (ZØE) Research Laboratory is a unique kind of building in Texas – designed specifically to test and demonstrate various alternative energy generation technologies in order to achieve a net-zero energy consumption of energy. The net-zero energy philosophy is based on a combination of different renewable energy technologies in a building (such as solar, geothermal, and wind systems) which leads to produce enough energy to power a building and in many cases even create excess energy to power a building and in many cases even create excess energy to return back to the power grid and thus the net energy consumption over a period or a year becomes zero. The lab is over 1,200 square feet and has an open flexible work/laboratory space along with an attached work shop area. There is a living quarter with a bathroom and a small kitchen with a refrigerator. Steel columns/beams were used for building as well as structural insulated panels for the walls and roof. It has a centered utility core for easy operation and remodeling. The sustainability features include: bamboo flooring and millwork, local materials, a recycled glass counter top and back splash, a rain-harvesting water system, and renewable solar and wind power for energy.

    Lab location: Discovery Park
    Faculty/Staff: Weihuan Zhao

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