Development of a control-oriented thermal management testbed

The electrical power on board vehicles has increased dramatically in recent decades. This electrification has been accompanied by increased thermal loading due to inefficiencies in electrical components. This places extreme burden on the thermal management systems responsible for transferring, storing, and rejecting thermal energy to maintain safe efficient temperatures throughout a vehicle. This project will focus on constructing and instrumenting an experimental testbed representative of the fluid-based thermal management systems found in vehicles like aircraft and automobiles. This includes development of the physical testbed and its data acquisition hardware/software to read sensor measurements and issue actuator commands. Students who could be involved for multiple semesters would work towards creating simulation models to validate against data from the testbed, developing control algorithms that govern its real-time operation, and/or applying design optimization approaches to evaluate candidate thermal management architectures. The specific plan of work can be customized to meet the student's unique areas of interest and career goals. More information about these research themes can be found at:

University Park
Number of Opportunities: 
Minimum Qualifications: 

Undergraduate in in a STEM major

Posting Date: 
Saturday, February 8, 2020 to Monday, February 8, 2021
Position Type: 
Volunteer, Academic Credit
Opportunity Timeframe: 
Fall, Spring, Summer, Academic Year
Application Procedure: 

Contact Dr. Pangborn at:

Requested Materials: 
  • Brief statement of research interests (no more than one page)
  • Unofficial academic transcript
  • Current resume or CV