Published: July 12, 2016
Prateek Shrestha

Focus Area: Air Quality - Shelly Miller Group

I am a PhD student of mechanical engineering working with Prof. Shelly Miller in the field of indoor air quality. For my research, I am working as the engineering team lead to gather data from hundreds of homes in Colorado that have benefited from weatherization programs to improve building energy efficiency, and trying to compare the indoor air quality and consequently the respiratory health of occupants of weatherized versus non-weatherized homes by measuring building air exchange rates, pulmonary function of occupants and air pollutant concentrations. Through this EPA funded research, we are trying to seek answers as to whether the energy saving measures done in residential buildings can have a pronounced impact on respiratory health of the occupants.

Having completed my undergraduate studies back in my home country of Nepal, I had a chance to engage in some experimental research back in Nepal on Chlor-Alkali Fuel Cell prototype design, fabrication and testing, small-scale horizontal axis wind turbine blade design and manufacturing, micro-scale turpentine oil distillation plant design and data visualization on emissions inventory for atmospheric brown clouds.

After joining CU Boulder's PhD program in mechanical engineering in the fall of 2012, I also got a brief opportunity to work with Prof. Peter Hamlington and learn a lot about combustion and computational fluid dynamics simulations.

Since I joined Prof. Shelly Miller's research group in May 2014, the hands-on experimental research experience I am getting through this research project is helping me grow in terms of developing a systematic and scientific approach to problem identification and problem solving. I thank Prof. Miller and all my teammates from my research group for this great opportunity and all their support.