Professor from Beijing visits UMD to research ways to increase HVAC efficiency and reduce energy use

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CEEE Visiting faculty researcher Dr. Rang Tu.

Rang Tu is an assistant professor from the University of Science and Technology Beijing in China. She teaches Heating Engineering and Energy Conservation Technologies for Buildings to undergraduates.  She is currently a visiting researcher at the Center for Environmental Energy Engineering (CEEE) researching new ways to increase HVAC system efficiency while reducing energy consumption.

Dr. Tu’s three major research areas (in collaboration with the center’s associate director, Dr. Yunho Hwang) are: the study of falling film heat and mass transfer using CFD simulation; ‘solar cooling’ experiments; and adsorption heat storage simulation.

Her Ph.D. project in Tsinghua University was on heat and mass transfer processes of adsorption dehumidification, which uses adsorption materials to handle latent load in residential, commercial, and industrial buildings.  Her work has led to technological innovations for low temperature regeneration and multistage desiccant wheels combined with heat pump systems to increase efficiency and improve performance. She is both using experimental and simulation research approaches, and has a prototype in her lab in China.

“My main objective is to expand my research area,” says Dr. Tu, “CEEE is highly regarded in China for its tremendous contributions in the area of refrigeration and HVAC.  My time here is a very valuable experience for my research life.”

Dr. Tu will continue to research falling film heat and mass transfer, as well as adsorption heat storage when she returns to China in 2017.  In the meantime, she is preparing two papers with Dr. Hwang which they hope will be published by IIR and Energy.

Taking full advantage of her time in the United States, Dr. Tu plans to indulge in another passion – travel – and visit Yellowstone National Park.  “I’ve heard it is very beautiful,” she remarks. She would also like to visit the West Coast if she has the time.  Dr. Tu also appreciates the novelty of living for a while in a new country.  “The U.S. has a totally different culture than China,” she says.  “People are very friendly here.”  An avid runner, she noticed that people say hello to her when she is running through campus, even though they don’t know her.  This is a different experience from when she runs in China.

Dr. Tu has been married for two years to Teng Wang, who is working with the State Development and Investment Corporation in China to reduce pollution and invest innovative technologies.  Happily, he plans to visit her in October.  

Published April 25, 2016