Qiao, Hongtao (*Alumni, Ph.D. 2014)

Research Topic: 

Note: Hongtao Qiao graduated in 2014, and his dissertation was Transient Modeling of Two-stage and Variable Refrigerant Flow Vapor Compression Systems with Frosting and Defrosting.  He now works for Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratory.


Hongtao Qiao will soon be finishing his Ph.D. dissertation, “Transient Modeling of Two-stage and Variable Refrigerant Flow Vapor Compression Systems with Frosting and Defrosting”, the principal objective of which is to develop modeling technology to help engineers improve product design and shorten the time it takes to bring a product from the development phase to the market.

Says Qiao, “With this technology, engineers can predict product performance before making a prototype, which is critical to avoiding faults. After the prototype is made, the technology also can help engineers reduce testing cost and save time.” Meanwhile, he explains, the product performance can be optimized with calibrated models. The technology is already helping engineers monitor the operating process and detect the field faults.  His research focuses on two aspects of transient modeling of vapor compression systems. The first is developing a comprehensive transient modeling package on the Modelica/Dymola platform. The second concentrates on using the models to investigate the transient behavior of advanced vapor compression systems, specifically, a two-stage flash tank vapor injection system and a variable refrigerant flow system.

Before joining CEEE in 2009, Qiao earned his M.S. degree in Refrigeration and Cryogenics Engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and worked in industry for many years in China – first for Trane, then for Carrier.  His colleagues at Carrier in Syracuse, NY encouraged him to apply to the Ph.D. program at the University of Maryland where he has become a very valuable member of the CEEE team.

Married for five years to Ruijin Zhu, they have a beloved mini-Schnauzer named “QQ” who currently lives in China with the in-laws.  “My wife likes dogs very much, and when I was traveling a lot for Carrier, she bought herself the little dog one Chinese New Year’s to keep her company when I was away,” says Qiao. Despite looking forward to being reunited with their dog, the couple hopes to remain for a while in the United States after his graduation this October so that he can gain experience working for a firm in America.

In his limited spare time, Qiao likes to play Ping-Pong on Sunday afternoons with CEEE faculty research assistant Song Li.  He also likes going running with his wife, and watching American films – particularly those starring Tom Hanks and Robert Di Nero.