Student Spotlight: Robert Chiodi
~ April 27, 2020 ~
Robert Chiodi is a doctoral candidate in mechanical engineering from Abington, Massachusetts. After earning a bachelor’s degree at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, he chose to pursue further study at Cornell due to the faculty as well as the Ithaca area.
What is your area of research and why is it important?
I develop new techniques for computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations, specifically focusing on the process of liquid atomization. This process, where large liquid structures break up into smaller ones (picture the way that a spray bottle works) are encountered every day, occurring in the waterfalls around Ithaca and in your car engine when fuel is injected. Studying atomization through simulation can be much more flexible than performing physical experiments. As an example, experimentally studying atomization in the absence of gravity requires performing the experiment on the International Space Station, whereas in a simulation, it requires only changing one number.
What have you gained by participating in the NextGen Professors Program?
As a first-generation college student, I understand how alienating higher education can be for someone whose parents did not attend college. Because of this, I am especially interested in helping first-generation and low-income students succeed in higher education. The NextGen Professors Program has taught me ways to better empathize and engage with diverse groups as well as organize community efforts and support to help them. Once a professor, I look forward to employing these strategies to make a difference in the lives of and help as many students as possible. […]