Dr. Ahmad (Adam) Vakili

Professor MABE
University of Tn Space Institute
Tullahoma, TN 37388-9700

Phone: (931) 393-7483
Fax: (931) 393-7530

Low Cost Pitch Based Carbon Fiber


  • B.S., General Engineering (Mechanical and Chemical Engineering) 1972, Abadan Institute of  Technology, Abadan, Iran.
  • Non‑degree 1973‑1974, Rhein.‑Westf. Technische Hochschule Aachen, Germany. Scholarship from Deutscher Academischer, Austauschdienst
  • M.S., Engineering (Mechanical/Aerospace) 1976, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee
  • Ph.D., Engineering (Mechanical/Aerospace) 1978, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee

Professional / Research Experience

Dr. Vakili is a Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the University of Tennessee Space Institute. His research areas of interest include: basic flow control, industrial flows, flow control applied to mixing and combustion control. He has over 25 years of experience in theoretical, computational and applied research in the aerospace and mechanical engineering related fields. He has taught a number of courses in the related areas. Dr. Vakili has worked with a number of companies and has been successful in helping improve performance of various existing industrial processes and or help design new processes that are currently in operation. Dr. Vakili worked with CONOCO and ConocoPhillips on their carbon fiber laboratory and commercial production processes. He has developed a high speed carbon fiber spinning process for pitch based carbon fiber production. He has developed expertise and is interested and involved in carbon fiber production process technologies and carbon based composite materials development. He has been the principal investigator or co-investigator of more than 80 research projects, grants, or contracts in diverse areas such as internal flow, unsteady flows supersonic mixing and combustion enhancement, vortex dynamics and control, instrumentation and diagnostics, high angle of attack aerodynamics, mathematical modeling of non-linear systems and low cost carbon fiber technologies. He has published more than 120 technical papers and reports and has several patents.

Recent Publications

  • “Advanced Labyrinth Seals for Steam Turbine Generators,” A. Vakili, A. Meganathan, S. Ayyalasomayajula (UTSI), Stephen Hesler (EPRI), and Lewis Shuster (Reliant Resources), GT2006-91263, ASME Turbo Expo 2006: Power for Land, Sea and Air, Barcelona, Spain, 2006.
  • “An Experimental and Numerical Study of Labyrinth Seal Flow,” A.D. Vakili, A.J. Meganathan, M. A. Michaud, S. Radhakrishnan, The University of Tennessee Space Institute, Paper no.GT2005-68224, Proceedings of ASME Power for Land, Sea and Air, June 2005.
  • “Advanced Steam Labyrinth Seal Design,” Vakili, A. D., Phase 1: Initial Concept Evaluation, EPRI Product ID 1011932 Final Report, March 2005.
  • “A New Honeycomb for Low Isotropic Turbulence,” Vakili, A., and Elder, T., AIAA-2003-3880, 33rd Fluid Dynamics Conference and Exhibit, Orlando, FL, June 23-26, 2003
  • “An Experimental Study Of Labyrinth Seal Flow,” Mike Michaud, Ahmad Vakili and Abraham Meganathan, (UTSI), and Robert Zielke (Tennessee Valley Authority), Lewis Shuster (Reliant Energy, formerly at TVA), and James Terrell (TVA), IJPGC2003-40097, Proceedings of IJPGC, 2003 International Joint Power Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, USA, June 16-19, 2003.
  • “Upstream Mass Injection Effects on Cavity Flow Oscillations” (PIV measurements and numerical simulations), Abraham J. Meganathan, and A. D. Vakili, AIAA 2003-0224, Jan 2003.
  • “Unsteady Vortex Breakdown Behavior over a Pitching-Rolling 70o Delta Wing,” H.J. Kowal and A.D. Vakili, Canadian Astronautics and Space Journal, Vol. 46, No. 1, March 2000.
  • “An Experimental Study of Open Cavity Flows at Low Subsonic Speeds,” Abraham J. Meganathan and A. D. Vakili, AIAA 2002-0280, Jan 2002.
  • “Open Cavity Flow at Subsonic Speeds-Comparison of Numerical Simulations with Experiments,” Radhakrishnan, S. R., A. J. Meganathan and Ahmad D. Vakili, AIAA 2002-0571, Jan 2002.
  • “An Experimental Study of Labyrinth Seals in Steam Turbines,” Michael Michaud, A. D. Vakili and A. J. Meganathan, May 2001, Final Report for TVA
  • “Review of Acoustic Measurement Techniques in Wind Tunnels (Invited),” A. D. Vakili and S. Radhakrishnan, 21st AIAA Advanced Measurement Technology and Ground Testing Conference, June 2000.
  • “Acoustic Measurements and Background Noise Separation in Wind Tunnels,” Sekhar Radhakrishnan and Ahmad D. Vakili, AIAA paper 99-1990, Proceedings of the 5th AIAA/CEAS Aeroacoustic Conference, 1999.