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Additive Manufacturing and Design Graduate Programs

Edwin Schwalbach

Wednesday, February 28, 2024; 11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. (ET)
Speaker: Edwin Schwalbach from Air Force Research Laboratory, Materials & Manufacturing Directorate

Hosted by: Jaclyn Stimely,  juc52@psu.edu

Engineering Science and Mechanics

Developing gas turbine engines aimed at reducing the carbon footprint

Wednesday, February 28, 2024; 3:35 PM - 4:25 PM
060 Willard Building
Speaker: Karen A. Thole from Penn State University

Abstract: Commercial aviation is responsible for between 2.0 and 2.5 percent of the total global CO2 emissions of which 90 percent comes from large single-aisle and twin-aisle aircraft. In response to the International Civil Aviation Organization’s pledge to support an aspirational net zero aviation goal by 2050, a number of directions have been identified by the aviation industry. With the exception of fully electric, the majority of the future aviation propulsion systems use a gas turbine as the power plant. Given this need, it is imperative that if we are to reduce our CO2 emissions, significant research attention is needed for improving the overall efficiency of gas turbine engines, which is the product of the propulsive efficiency (conversion of shaft power to propulsive power) and motor thermodynamic efficiency (conversion of fuel flow power to shaft power), which is often referred to as thermal efficiency. Today’s aircraft operates with propulsive efficiencies of up to 70 percent and thermal efficiencies of up to 55 percent, both of which have steadily improved over many decades given innovations, significant testing, and improved design tools. To achieve these efficiencies, today’s turbine engines operate at temperatures much above the melting temperatures of the turbine components through the use of highly advanced cooling technologies. This presentation will discuss a few approaches that are being taken to move forward in gas turbine research to reduce the carbon footprint.

Biography: Dr. Karen A. Thole is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Pennsylvania State University where she also previously served as the Department Head. Dr. Thole’s expertise is heat transfer, additive manufacturing, and instrumentation development. She directs the Steady Thermal Aero Research (START) Lab where experimental and computational studies are conducted to advance aviation sustainability and power generation through highly efficient turbines. She is a Fellow of ASME and AIAA. She has been a member of several National Academy of Engineering studies; has served on NASA advisory committees; and is a member of the Department of Air Force Scientific Advisory Board. Her work has been recognized by ASME’s R. Tom Sawyer, George Westinghouse Gold, Edwin F. Church, and Heat Transfer Memorial Awards. From AIAA, she has been awarded AIAA’s Air Breathing Propulsion and Thermophysics Awards. Dr. Thole received her BSME and MSME from the University of Illinois and her PhD from the University of Texas.

Hosted by: Bethany Illig,  buh196@psu.edu

Mechanical Engineering

Managing IAQ at Multiple Scales - from Urban to Personal Microenvironments

Tuesday, February 27, 2024; 3:35 p.m. - 4:35 p.m.
135 Reber Building
Speaker: Jianshun Zhang from Syracuse University

Dr. Jianshun “Jensen” Zhang is Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Executive Director of SyracuseCoE at Syracuse University (SU), New York, USA, and a Visiting Professor of the School of Architecture and Urban Planning at Nanjing University, China. He received his BS and MS from China University of Agriculture in 1982 and 1985, respectively, and his Ph.D. from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1991. He was a researcher at National Research Council of Canada for 8 years before he joined SU in 1999. Dr. Zhang is an expert in room air and contaminant distribution, material emissions, air purification, building enclosure performance, and combined heat, air, moisture, and pollutant simulations (CHAMPS) for integrative design and intelligent controls of buildings. He has authored/co-authored over 200 technical papers, 3 American national standards and 3 book chapters. He is Editor in Chief of the International Journal of Ventilation and Associate Editor of Science and Technology for the Built Environment, and a Member of the Editorial Boards of Building Simulations—an international Journal. He served as the US Expert to IEA Annex 20, 68, 79, and 86, and was co-founder of the CHAMPS Collaborative. He was conference Chairman for IAQVEC 2010—7th International Conference on Indoor Air Quality, Ventilation and Energy Conservation in Buildings and IBPC 2018—7th International Building Physics Conference. He served as President of the International Association of Building Physics from 2018 to 2021 and is a Vice President of IAQVEC Association. He also chaired ASHRAE TC 4.10 Indoor Environmental Modeling and the ASHRAE Environmental Health Committee. He is Fellow of ASHRAE and ISIAQ.  

Indoor air quality (IAQ) is vital to human health, wellbeing and performance as people typically spend over 80% of their time indoors. The indoor pollutants people expose to originate from both indoors and outdoors. To devise an energy-efficient and cost-effective approach to improving IAQ, it is necessary to consider strategies across multiple scales – from the outdoor environment around buildings to inside buildings, to rooms, and to the microenvironment around the occupants that directly affect the human exposure and intake of the pollutants. In this talk, we present a 3-dimensional view of the IAQ engineering: the scales (of environments), the species (of pollutants) and strategies (of IAQ control). The objectives are to assess the potential and limits of the various source control, ventilation and air purification strategies across the different scale, and to develop an integrated approach for managing IAQ in an energy-efficient and cost-effective manner. Existing data from previous research on the effectiveness of various IAQ strategies and technologies at the different environmental scales will be discussed, including a layered approach to reduce the risk of airborne transmission of the COVID 19 virus. The talk will end with an outlook to the future challenges in IAQ research. 

Hosted by: Mechanical Engineering,  lnr108@psu.edu