The Nanoscale Transport Phenomena Laboratory seeks to understand the transport of mass, momentum, and energy at the atomic level by studying the behavior of phonons, photons, electrons, and fluid particles. Our research is based in mechanical engineering and incorporates knowledge from physics, materials science, and chemistry. We develop and apply molecular- and meso-scale simulation techniques, and collaborate closely with experimental research groups.
Alan McGaughey leads the Nanoscale Transport Phenomena Laboratory. He received a Bachelor of Engineering from McMaster University (1998), a Master of Applied Science from the University of Toronto (2000), and a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan (2004). He came to Carnegie Mellon University in 2005. He won the Teare Teaching Award in 2014 and and has been voted Professor of the Year by the MechE seniors three times (2012, 2015, 2017).
Application of molecular dynamics, lattice dynamics, density functional theory, and the Boltzmann transport equation to predict phonon properties and thermal conductivity.
Quantifying uncertainty in first-principles predictions of phonon properties and thermal conductivity (with Venkat Viswanathan).
Building machine learning-based interatomic potentials for modeling oxides (with Aarti Singh and Alex Davis).
Nanostructures and Interfaces
Thermal transport across interfaces formed between β-Ga2O3 with metals and other oxides (with Jonathan Malen and Andrew Gellman).
Microwave assisted oxide thin film growth (with Reeja Jayan).
Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Materials
Thermal transport in metal-organic frameworks (with Chris Wilmer) and hybrid organic-inorganic superatomic crystals (with Jonathan Malen and Xavier Roy).
Molecular mechanisms of electrocaloric cooling in polymers.
Device-level modeling to integrate material properties with macroscopic thermodynamics and heat transfer.
Liquid-Vapor Phase Change
Molecular mechanisms of evaporation in a liquid meniscus (with Jonathan Malen).
24-623 Molecular Simulation of Materials
Dimensionless LJ Potential
Visualizing Atomic Systems
Temperature in an MD Simulation
Pressure in an MD Simulation
Pressure Control in an MD Simulation
NVT Monte Carlo: Harmonic Oscillator
NVT Monte Carlo: 2-State System
Activated Processes and Transition State Theory
For a list of Alan McGaughey’s publications, please visit his Google Scholar profile.
Former group members
Eric Landry (2009)
Joe Turney (2009), co-advised with Cristina Amon
John Thomas (2010)
Minyoung Lee (2011)
Jason Larkin (2013)
Wee Liat Ong (2014), co-advised with Jonathan Malen
Ankit Jain (2015)
Shubhaditya Majumdar (2016), co-advised with Jonathan Malen
Simon Lu (2016)
Ying-Ju Yu (2016)
Francisco Ramirez (2017)
Kevin Parrish (2017), co-advised with Jon Malen
Ryan Iutzi, University of Waterloo co-op student, 2009
Dan Sellan, University of Toronto Ph.D. student, 2009
Yusuke Masao, Kyoto University Ph.D. student, 2012
Sam Huberman, University of Toronto M.A.Sc. student, 2012
Kimmo Saaskilahti, Aalto University Ph.D. student, 2015
Cheng Shao, Shanghai Jiaotong University Ph.D. student, 2016-2017
I-Ling Chang, National Cheng Kung University Professor, 2017
Bo Fu, Xi'an Jiaotong University Ph.D. student, 2018-2019
Qi Liang, Xi'an Jiaotong University Ph.D. student, 2019.
Sarat Mikkilineni, 2006
Madhur Paharia, 2006-2007
Taka Matsuura, 2007
Ottoleo Kuter-Arneback, 2008-2009
Chris Fleck (U. Pittsburgh), 2008-2009
Nicholas Roche, 2008-2009
Michael Barako, 2009-2010
Gary Lee, 2007, 2009-2010
Shaun Swanson, 2009-2010
Gabbi Coloyan, 2010-2012
Alex Kowalski, 2012
Josh Fuhrman, 2014-2015
Justin Abel, 2015-2016
Lane Darby, 2019
Rohan Mehta, 2020
Jiong Chen, 2020
Move over metals, plastics can be thermally conductive too
An interdisciplinary team led by Jon Malen has received funding from the Department of Defense to discover switchable high thermal conductivity polymers.
Meitz first in 25 years to receive DOE graduate fellowship
Mechanical engineering student Ethan Meitz is working to create predictive nanoscale models for the thermophysical properties of liquids.
Releasing the heat
Researchers develop a universal model to predict the thermal boundary conductance of a multilayered-metal-dielectric interface. This model will help to streamline the development of thermally efficient devices.
McGaughey selected for fellowship
MechE’s Alan McGaughey has been selected to receive the 2021 Viskanta Fellowship from Purdue University, which seeks individuals with “demonstrated abilities to perform independent and innovative research in the field of thermal sciences.”
Engineering faculty awarded professorships
Engineering faculty Peter Adams, Elizabeth Dickey, Carlee Joe-Wong, Pulkit Grover, Alan McGaughey, Rahul Panat, and Douglas Weber were awarded professorship titles in February and March 2021.
College of Engineering names 2019 faculty award winners
The College of Engineering has announced the winners of the 2019 faculty awards. They include: Alan McGaughey, Paulina Jaramillo, Jana Kainerstorfer, Reeja Jayan, Carmel Majidi, Jonathan Malen, and Vijayakumar Bhagavatula.
Eight faculty receive Scott Institute seed grants for energy research
The Scott Institute recently selected awardees from the College of Engineering for its seventh round of seed grants for energy research.
Seeding energy research
Three faculty members in the Department of Mechanical Engineering received Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation’s Seed Grants for Energy Research.
Wang wins best poster award at IMECE
Ph.D. student Xiaoman Wang earned the award for Best Poster Presentation in the Society-Wide Micro and Nanotechnology Forum at the International Mechancial Engineering Congress & Exposition in Pittsburgh, Pa. Wang is a student of Professor of Mechanical Engineering Alan McGaughey.
McGaughey named faculty chair-elect
MechE’s Alan McGaughey was appointed the College of Engineering faculty chair-elect.
Malen and McGaughey published in Nature Materials
MechE Professors Johnathan Malen and Alan McGaughey published an article in Nature Materials on their team's discovery of the effects of rotational disorder on thermal conductivity in superatomic structures.