Faculty of Engineering

Image of Tao Yang

Tao Yang

Associate Professor, Industrial Fellow of RAEng, Faculty of Engineering



After studying at the Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, Dr. Tao Yang joined the Power Electronics, Machines and Control (PEMC) Group at the University of Nottingham as a PhD candidate in 2009 fully funded by "Dean of Engineering Scholarship". His PhD research on "Dynamic Phasor modelling of more-electric aircraft electrical power systems" has resulted his winning the inaugural "EU CleanSky Best PhD award" in 2016 (First Winner of this prize in history) and interviewed by AeronewsTV during the ILA Airshow 2016 to prompt his research (http://www.aeronewstv.com/en/industry/research-innovation/3370-clean-sky-academy-to-invent-the-future-of-aviation.html (56''-1'21") . The proposed dynamic phasor modelling technique has been included in the SAE Aerospace Information Report AIR6326 "Aircraft Electric Power System. Modelling and Simulation. Basic Definitions"

After gaining his PhD in 2013, Dr. Yang has been a researcher within the EU CleanSky JTI funded AEGART project (1.6M Euros, 2011-2015, https://cordis.europa.eu/project/id/296090,), a project to develop an innovative electrical starter/generator systems, where Dr. Yang is leading the control design of such a system.

Dr. Yang was appointed as an Assistant Professor in 2016 and then as an Associate Professor in 2019. He is currently with over £8M research portfolio (£1.56M as PI) investigating innovative more-electric/hybrid aircraft technologies through joint projects with world-leading aerospace companies. His research led to over 80 peer reviewed papers and 4 book chapters.

Over the past 11 years' professional life, Dr. Yang developed his research interest and expertise on power electronics dominated on-board electrical systems for future aerospace and aeronautic application, especially for more-electric/hybrid/all-electric aircraft.

Dr. Yang is an Industrial Fellow of Royal Academy of Engineering, Fellow of IET, IEEE Senior member and an SAE AE-7M standard committee member.

Dr. Yang is Chairing the Technical Committee of Aerospace Power within IEEE Power Electronics Society, https://www.ieee-pels.org/technical-activities/tc-11/leaders

Dr. Yang serves as Associate Editors of several Top Journals including IEEE Transactions on Transportation Electrification (JCR Q1), Chinese Journal of Aeronautics (JCR Q1)

Dr. Yang is currently leading a team of 6 Postdocs and 10 PhD students developing power electronics based technologies for aerospace electrification.

Dr Yang is a member of the Power Electronics, Machines and Control research group.

Expertise Summary

Dr. Yang's research interests focus on power electronic systems for more-electric/hybrid and all-electric aircraft applications, which include:

  • High-speed high-power electrical drives for future aircraft power generation and actuation
  • On-board electrical system protection using solid-state circuit breakers
  • High-efficiency AC/DC, DC/DC power electronics converters
  • Innovative electrical system architecture design, modelling and simulation
  • Advanced on-board electrical system control and stability analysis
  • Sensorless drive control for on-board high-speed generation systems
  • Power electronics design using Artificial Intelligent technologies

Teaching Summary

I am currently convening several modules including

EEEE1006- Aerospace Electrical & Electronic Engineering

H43EE3 - More-Electric Aircraft

EEEE4112 - Electrical Systems for Aircraft, Marine and Automotive

Research Summary

In the Flightpath 2050, the ACARE sets out some very tough long-term environmental goals for the industry. Compared to a new aircraft in 2000, by 2050 the aim is to reduce CO2 emissions per passenger… read more

Recent Publications

Current Research

In the Flightpath 2050, the ACARE sets out some very tough long-term environmental goals for the industry. Compared to a new aircraft in 2000, by 2050 the aim is to reduce CO2 emissions per passenger Kilometre by 75%, emissions of Oxides of Nitrogen (NOx) by 90% and the perceived noise emission of flying aircraft by 65%. The only way to achieve this goal is ELECTRIFICATION. Indeed, many functions, which conventionally were driven by pneumatic, hydraulic or mechanical power, are now being replaced by electrical subsystems to improve the overall aircraft efficiency, reliabilities and flexibilities. The EU has launched a 4 billion EURO (2015 - 2022) research programme "Clean Sky" aiming to develop novel aircraft technologies to achieve goals set by the ACARE.

I am currently involved in several exciting projects within the Clean Sky programme, looking into the more-electric aircraft technologies, including:

Nov 2018 - Nov 2022 IGNITE project - (Within EU H2020 CleanSky II program) Project lead and principle investigator. The IGNITE project aims to develop a high-power DC generation channel for future aircraft applications. The project will provides an environmental test platform for power generation technologies, power conversion technologies and disconnect actuation systems

Feb. 2017 - July 2021 ACHIEVE project - (Within EU H2020 CleanSky II program) Project lead and principle investigator. The ACHIEVE system will deliver a high-speed integrated electrical drive for turboprop applications. The ACHIEVE system will enable mild hybridisation of turboprop engines.

July 2017 - 2022 INSTEP - (Within EU H2020 CleanSky II program) Project deputy lead. The INSTEP project aims to develop an innovative aircraft electrical power distribution system based on recently developed solid-state semiconductor technologies. The projects cover from components level, such as solid-state circuit breakers and DC/DC converters to system level integration and demonstration.

June 2019 - Dec 2022 MISSION project- (Within EU H2020 CleanSky II program) Project deputy lead. The MISSION project aims to develop a demonstration power distribution system via a combined power and data network. In this project, a TRL4-level DC power distribution system will be developed and integrated to an A320-type fuselage. The distribution system will implement power line communication technology which is used to control solid-state circuit breakers.

July 2017 - 2022 GAINS project WP4 (part of EU H2020 CleanSky II program) The Green Airframe Icing Novel Systems (GAINS) project aims to develop a new optimised mixed strategy Wing Ice Protection System (WIPS) for the next generation aircraft. My role on this project is to lead the development of novel electrical system design and new electro-mechanical actuation system development Main duties: • Development of models enabling optimisation of electrical system architecture design • Optimisation of electrical WIPS design and its integration at aircraft electrical system level • Control system design for the electro-mechanical actuation system • Model development, stability and reliability analysis of the aircraft electrical system

Past Research

During my PhD studies, I focused on developing functional models for electrical power system studies. The developed models include functional models in the dq0 frame as well as models based on the dynamic phasor concept. These models allow engineers to study the electrical power system of aircraft in a more efficient way.

Future Research

I welcome inquiries from potential PhD candidates who are interested in the following research areas:

Aircraft electrical power systems, high-speed electrical drives, high power density DC/DC, AC/DC, DC/AC converters, Solid-State Power Controllers or Solid-State Circuit Breakers

Faculty of Engineering

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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