Fluids and Thermal Engineering Research Group

Alumni PhD Students 

Jonathon Nicholson (2)

Jonothan Nicholson

PhD title: The Fluid and Thermal Dynamics of Rimming Flows with Boundary Slip

Supervisors:  Antonino La RoccaDonald Giddings, Outi Tammisola, Stephen Hibberd  

Personal Biography
I joined the University of Nottingham in 2010 for both my undergraduate degree and PhD in Mechanical Engineering. My research was based on simulating the chaotic flow of oil in aero-engines by using reduced order models to significantly simplify the CFD analysis. I studied how micro-scale technologies could be used to control the oil flows and presented my work in both Manchester and Atlanta. I also had the opportunity to visit the University of Palermo in Sicily where I talked to the engineering students about life as a PhD student at Nottingham and the merits of research in collaboration with industry.

I'm currently working at Norton Straw Consultants in Derby, where I'm working with a variety of companies to provide practical solutions to complex engineering problems. I am able to use the skills I learnt during my PhD to aid our clients with their fascinating problems. I always wanted to work in flow analysis and I have enjoyed working on several unique projects since completing my PhD. At this stage of my career, it is clear there is always more to learn, but as I work towards becoming a Chartered Engineer, I'm also enjoying the opportunities in managing projects.



Wigdan Kisha



Wigdan Kisha

PhD title: Designing and testing of a thermoacoustic heat engine

Supervisors:  David Hann and Jon McKechnie 

Personal Biography

Wigdan is now a member of staff and working for the Green Chemical Beacon Research Excellence.  She has been working on a project entitled, "A regenerator-based thermoacoustic electricity generator with different configurations for rural communities of South Sudan country"

Summary of the project

The overarching theme of my Ph.D. research is to investigate the viability of providing a reliable, sustainable, and affordable energy supply for the rural dwellers of the country of South Sudan. The aim is to boost the electricity output from a dual-core thermoacoustic engine developed by the SCORE team (http://www.score.uk.com) to produce 20 - 100 W using waste heat from traditional biomass cooking stoves. Such a system would be particularly competent for cooking, lighting, and heating solutions in areas where people live mostly in the dark such as South Sudan. The system would be more attractive if it were constructed using minimum moving parts and at a low cost. The idea was to apply thermoacoustic fundamentals to convert heat into acoustic energy. The energy conversion took place inside a thermoacoustic engine, and the electrical power harvested via a commercially available audio loudspeaker. The work carried out using numerical investigations with the aid of DeltaEC software, and a series of experimental tests on two different engine configurations.  By applying a novel technique for the heat distribution into the system, the research proved the viability of using an atmospheric air-filled resonator to generate up to 52W of electricity. The outcome of this research could be beneficial to meet a combined smoke-free stove design with electricity generation for low-income households of South Sudan or any other rural areas in the developing world, to meet the basic needs, particularly for charging mobile phones and both indoor and torch lighting.

The work is funded by the Faculty of Engineering Research Excellence Ph.D. Scholarship.

Future focus:

Bi-directional turbine for acoustoelectric conversion, Thermoacoustic modelling, miniature steam turbines for electricity generation. 




adeel-arshad (1)

Adeel Arshad

PhD title: Assessment of nanomaterials in enhancing the thermophysical properties of phase change materials for thermal management

Supervisors: Mark Jabbal and Yuying Yan


Personal Biography

Adeel Arshad was the Doctoral Researcher at the Fluids & Thermal Engineering (FLUTE) Research Group, Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham.  His PhD degree was in Mechanical Engineering specialization in Thermal-Fluids and Advanced Materials. He was working on the development and characterization of composite phase change materials (CPCMs) using various mono and hybrid metallic-oxide and carbon-based nanomaterials. The PhD dissertation focused on synthetic chemistry skills to synthesis the novel CPCMs and to investigate the effect of different metallic-oxide and carbon-based nanomaterials. To this end, I independently designed and synthesized novel, conformationally restrained, nanocomposite, and shape–stabilized CPCMs with different nanomaterials and investigated the chemical, physical, thermal properties, heat transfer, and phase-transition phenomenon during melting/cooling processes. The detailed experimentation was conducted to explore the physical, chemical, and thermal properties using different characterization techniques such as Environmental Scanning Electron Microscopy (ESEM) and Energy-dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDX), Fourier-transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR), X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC), and Thermal Conductivity Analyzer (TCA). In addition, the melting/cooling phenomenon and heat transfer performance were studied using Infrared Thermography (IRT) tests. These novel CPCMs were then employed in the micro pin-fins and copper-oxide coated metal-foam mini heat sinks for passive thermal management of microelectronics. In addition to the experimental study, the CFD simulations were conducted to analyze the melting phenomenon and heat transfer analysis of nanocomposite and metal-foam CPCMs embedded heat sink with different variations of nanoparticles and metal foams. I independently problem-solved by using experimental techniques and computational models to develop an efficient and novel thermal management technology for low power density electronic devices. 

During his PhD research, he was able to publish 12 peer-reviewed journal and 06 conference publications with the total Impact Factor (IF) of IF=69.212. In addition, was awarded the Travel Grant by the ITherm committee in 2020. He widely served as a reviewer in several international journals by Elsevier, Willey, Springer, ASME, IEEE, and MDPI publishers and received the outstanding reviewer certificate. Based on the research contributions, I was nominated in The Scopus Early Career Researcher UK Award 2020 by Elsevier, and he has been shortlisted in Top 2% Scientists around the World as per the list published by Stanford University USA on Oct 19th, 2021.  





Fluids and Thermal Engineering Research Group

Faculty of Engineering
The University of Nottingham
Nottingham, NG7 2RD