About Me


Connect With Me

I am a mechanical engineer specialized in renewable energy technologies, a trained project manager, and an interdisciplinary researcher in sustainability. Along the way, I have worked on a multitude of energy-related projects as a design engineer, a research assistant, a consultant, and an assistant professor.

The energy and clean transportation sectors excite me, and my goal is to work in a setting that will allow me to use my diverse skill set to tackle projects in this field.

Skill set:
Sustainable Mobility, Clean Transportation, Multi-criteria Decision Analysis, Data Analysis, Mathematical Modeling, Numerical Analysis, Financial Modeling, Behavioral Analysis, Heterogeneity and Variability, Game Theory, Simulations, Energy Policy, Project Management, Energy System Analysis, Renewable Energy Technologies, Asset Management, Economics, Alternative Fuel Vehicles, Life Cycle Analysis, Solar Thermal Energy, Concentrated Solar Power

My CV can be found here

Education

gol_logo

Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester (NY), USA

Golisano Institute for Sustainability
PhD in Sustainability
(August 2015-Present)

Research Interest: Energy, Transportation, Policy

CGPA- 3.87/4

Coursework
  • Data Analysis for Sustainable Systems (ISUS 809)
  • Risk Analysis (ISUS 806)
  • Multicriteria Decision Analysis of Sustainable Systems (ISUS 808)
  • Industrial Ecology (ISUS 704)
  • Energy Policy (PUBL 630)
  • Economics of Sustainable Systems (ISUS 706)
  • Fundamentals of Sustainability Science (ISUS 702)

Erasmus Mundus Master's Program

European Joint's Masters in Management and Engineering of Environment and Energy
(edition 2011-2013)

CGPA- 3.42/4

kth logo

KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden

August 2012-September 2013

GPA- 3.43/4

Coursework
  • Energy and Environment (MJ2407)
  • Sustainable Power Generation (MJ2405)
  • Sustainable Energy Utilization (MJ2407)
  • Renewable Energy Technology (MJ2411)
  • Technical French (Advanced Level) (DS2336)
me3 logo

Ecole des Mines de Nantes, Nantes, France

September 2011-July 2012

GPA-3.42/4

Coursework
  • Transport Phenomena
  • Measure and Experimental Data Analysis
  • Environmental Management and Strategies of Sustainability
  • Social Sciences for Project Managers
  • Process Modeling, Simulation & Control
vit logo

Vishwakarma Institute of Technology, Pune and Pune University, Maharashtra, India

Bachelors of Engineering (Mechanical)
August 2006-May 2010


CGPA-8.36/10 (First Class with Distinction)

Coursework
  • Energy Conservation and Management
  • Power Plant Engineering
  • Heat Transfer
  • Machine Design

Professional Exposure

EDF Climate Corps Fellow 2017

Iron Mountain, Boston, MA

  • Provided a solution with of alternative fuel vehicles as a part of a pilot fleet transition project to reduce scope 1 GHG emissions (the fleet is expected to start operation from November 2017-March 2018)
  • Assessed technical feasibility for all available alternative fuel vehicles for freight transportation with respect to company's operational requirements
  • Conducted financial feasibility and assessed government—federal and state—grants and incentives, and led discussions with stakeholders to rollout the pilot fleet
  • Designed a methodology to scale up the fleet transition from conventional fuel vehicles to alternative fuel vehicles, which can be applied to similar businesses
  • The company is investing over $1 million in the pilot fleet—mix of different classes and fuels—of 10 vehicles, which is expected to save 42.47 MT CO2e in one year of operation
  • Proposed a roadmap and performed potential GHG emissions savings analysis from a fleet transition to alternative fuel vehicles
  • Finalized and submitted application to achieve an EPA SmartWay Truck Carrier Partner status for Iron Mountain
  • The summary can be found here

    Assistant Professor

    I worked as an assistant professor at Mechanical Engineering Department of Sinhgad College of Engineering, Pune, India.

    The curriculum is designed by Pune University.
    My responsibilities include: teaching, research, consulting and supervision

    Research:

    As a faculty in Mechanical Engineering Department, I am involved with the following projects

    Development and Validation of Test Standards for Concentrating Solar Cookers
    The project is organized by Promoters, Researchers & Innovators in New and Clean Energy (PRINCE) in association with Solar Energy Society of India (SESI) and partnership with Solar Cookers International (SCI)

    Teaching:

    I have conducted laboratories for four year program of Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering
    1. Thermodynamics (Second Year)
    2. Heat Transfer (Third Year)
    3. Energy Audit and Management (Final Year)

    Ink Future, Pune, India. Associate

  • Established the India chapter of this global think-tank network
  • Steered bi-weekly group discussions with associates
  • Generated summary reports and circulated among global associates to continue online discussions
  • Freelance Consultant, Berlin, Germany

    I worked as a Freelance consultant for CPC-Analytics

    I wrote articles for the company's blog in sustainability and current news regarding energy and environment.
    I have written articles in English and Marathi (mother tongue).
    Marathi is spoken majorly (over 73 million population @2001) in Maharashtra.
    Maharashtra (capital Mumbai) has population (114.2 million @2012) close to Mexico and GDP ($175.3 billion @2009) close to Singapore.

    These informative and scientific articles in Marathi are written to educate and increase awareness about issues such as Climate Change, Sustainability, Solar Energy etc.

    1. Concentrated Solar Power

    2. Swachh Bharat

    3. What a Waste!

    4. India-Hungry for Energy (In Marathi)

    5. Climate Change (In Marathi)

    Independent Consultant, Pune, India.

  • Developed a business plan for a team researcher participating in the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation's deployable waterless toilet system program
  • Conceptualized and prepared system designs
  • See More

    kth logo

    Research Assistant

    April 2013 - October 2013

    In completion of a Masters thesis and an internship, I worked as a research assistant at Concentrating Solar Power Group in Heat and Power Division in KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden.

    The project is performed under TESCONSOL umbrella, a KIC Innoenergy project of the European Institute of Technology in Co-operation with Gas Natural Fenosa and TOTAL as Industrial Partners.

    As a part of research team to build up a tool to analyse the Solar Thermal power plants, a model was developed to analyse Direct Steam Generation (DSG) in Solar Central Receiver Tower system.
    Ivanpah Solar Thermal Power Plant, being the latest in Concentrating Solar Power and based on Direct Steam Generation principle, is considered as the base-line of this work.

    The thesis can be found here

    See More
    uop logo

    Design Engineer

    June 2010 - May 2011

    Designed two Solar thermal products for the company

    1. Parabolic Trough Concentrator (PTC) A Concentrating Solar Technology Especially designed for the roof-top mounting The objective was to generate steam for the end usage of industrial processes

    2. AKSON'S PENTA A Solar Water Heating Technology Incorporated with a specially designed five layered polymer tank to address the problem of salt depositions because of hard water

    Member of a core team to realize technology exchange MoU and underwent a training for manufacturing of Scheffler Concentrator.
    Business Development and strategies to launch two of the company's products.
    Defined a Bachelor's thesis project of 'Shadow-Simulation of Scheffler Concentrators' for computer engineering students.

    Projects

    Analysis of Daily Charging Profiles of Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Drivers

    Duration: January 2016 - Present

    Cluster analysis of daily charging profiles of PEV drivers
    Operational Efficiency analysis of charging stations
    Environmental Impact analysis of charging behavior of PEV drivers

    Tools: MATLAB, R, Python, Microsoft Excel

    Life Cycle Analysis of Different Charging Behaviors of Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Drivers Based on Cluster Membership

    Duration: March 2016 – May 2016

    Goals of LCA:
    To compare environmental impact of different clusters in terms of CO2 emissions (Global Warming Potential). Cluster membership signifies different charging behavior of PEV drivers. Different charging profiles have different electricity consumption at each hour. Further, grid mix at each hour corresponds to different environmental impact.
    Intended Audience: The City of Rochester (Owner of the public charging stations) and the ChargePoint Inc. (operator of the public charging stations), and the PEV user subscribed to their services.
    Usage: The results of this LCA can be used to understand which cluster has more environmental impact.

    Scope of LCA
    Five different cluster profiles were identified and used as basic building blocks for this LCA.
    Functional Unit: Electricity Consumed per PEV driver in the respective cluster.
    Reference Flow: The average electricity consumed daily per PEV driver in the respective.
    Life cycle stages: Electricity generation based on grid mix (of upstate New York) at high voltage and the transmission to medium voltage grid and then to the charging stations (which work at medium voltage) is the basic stage of this LCA.
    Flows: Emissions from the processes of electricity generation at different power plants.

    Tools: SimaPro, Microsoft Excel.

    Multi-criteria analysis of the Energy Recovery Unit at Golisano Institute for Sustainability (GIS)

    Duration: January 2016 – May 2016

    A multi-variable analysis of the Energy Recovery Unit (ERU) at GIS to minimize energy transfer of the system subjected to the operating temperature.
    The results showed that winter (February 2014) energy consumption was higher for the building than summer (July 2014).

    Tools: What’s Best—Microsoft Excel based optimization tool.

    Experiments in Sustainable Strategic Interactions: Coordinated Personalized Signals and Incentives for Reducing Energy Consumption and Carbon Footprints

    Duration: September 2015 – December 2015

    Abstract: The overarching goal of this work was to reduce personal energy consumption and carbon footprints through behavioral levers, while ensuring significant system level gains. Laboratory experiments with real decision-makers comprise a key component and provide an empirical basis for developing decision-making tools for addressing the overarching goal.
    The results with an adapted laboratory experiment of public goods game show that signaling with the willingness-to-pay (WTP) of the group led to a momentary convergence onto the equilibrium where a public good is provided.

    Tools: Z-Tree, Microsoft Excel, Matlab

    Analysis of Energy Recovery Unit at Golisano Institute for Sustainability (GIS)

    Duration:September 2015 - Present

    The smart and LEED Platinum certified building of the GIS is devised with a cutting-edge technology of two wheels (enthalpy wheel and dehumidification wheel) Energy Recovery Unit.
    The energy savings (hourly, daily, monthly and yearly) were calculated using the system operations data recorded by building control system of RIT.

    Tools: Microsoft Excel.

    Impact of Time Constraint, Endowment and Signaling Mechanism on Cooperation and Sharing in Public Goods Experiment

    Duration:August 2015 – December 2015

    In this work, the Public Goods experiment was used to study the cooperation and sharing for an existence of a public good. An economic experiment was designed to test three different scenarios in order to reduce number of free-riders.
    An effect of signaling mechanism as well as stated willingness-to-pay (WTP) and average monthly income (AMI) on decision making was also studied.
    Signaling mechanism, in most cases, had a positive impact. Furthermore, WTP had more dominant effect than AMI on contribution. However, both Time Constraint and Endowment scenario could not be more efficient than that of Base Case scenario.

    Tools: Z-Tree, Microsoft Excel.

    Thermo-Economic Analysis of Central Tower Receiver

    Duration: April 2013-October 2013
    Supervisor: Rafael Eduado Guedez Mata (KTH, Stockholm, Sweden)
    Adviser and Examiner:

    Prof. Andrew Martin
    Prof. Bjorn Laumert

    In completion of a Master’s Thesis and an internship, this research was conducted at Concentrating Solar Power and Techno-Economic Analysis Group in Heat and Power Division in KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden.

    The project was performed under TESCONSOL umbrella, a KIC Innoenergy project of the European Institute of Technology in Co-operation with Gas Natural Fenosa and TOTAL as Industrial Partners. As a part of research team established to build up a tool to analyze the Solar Thermal power plants, a model was developed to analyze Direct Steam Generation (DSG) in Solar Central Receiver Tower system.

    Ivanpah Solar Thermal Power Plant, being the latest in Concentrating Solar Power and based on Direct Steam Generation principle, was considered as the basic framework for this work.

    See More

    Malta-Energy System Analysis

    Duration: September 2012-December 2012
    Course: Energy and Environment (KTH, Stockholm, Sweden)
    Supervisor: Rafael Eduado Guedez Mata (KTH, Stockholm, Sweden)
    Adviser and Examiner:

    Prof. Mark Howells

    The project was aimed to develop an applied model of the energy system of Malta by using LEAP, as a modeling tool. Four different scenarios were developed to analyze the Maltese energy system. The analysis was majorly based on Malta's Renewable Energy potential, energy security as well as vital policy measures such as European Union's (EU) goals to address climate change. Along with these, a voluntarism scenario was developed to incorporate modern day technologies such as Smart Grids.

    The results were analyzed to put forth policy recommendations to allow maximum possible renewable energy sources in energy outlook of Malta and minimum GHG emissions.

    See More

    Biogas Upgrading in Indian Context

    Duration: February 2012-July 2012
    Adviser and Examiner:

    Dr. Shivaji Ramalingam
    Integrated Engineering Project (EMN, Nantes, France)

    Description:

    This work was performed to select and design an upgrading facility with adsorption columns for a medium scaled (200 m3/hr) biogas plant by using PROSIM as a simulation tool. Moreover, India's current policy developments were analyzed to develop a futuristic scenario for Biogas technology in India.

    • Adsorption columns were designed

    • Simulated using PROSIM, and calculations were performed using Matlab and Microsoft Excel

    See More

    Layer Freezing in Freeze Concentration Technique (FCT)

    Duration: January 2010-September 2011
    Guide:

    Prof. S. K. Jabade

    'Freeze Concentration' is used to separate two phases of a binary liquid such as milk, fruit juices, and alloys. Sugarcane juice—a binary liquid of sucrose (C12H22O11) and water is gradually cooled below the liquidus line; by running over a refrigerated plate where water in the juice crystallizes out as ice, along the liquidus line, up to a eutectic point, and leaves a semi-solid solution with higher concentration (Brix).

    Furthermore, Freeze Concentration is an effective energy conservation technology, as the energy needed to freeze out water consumes lesser energy, than boiling it off. The remaining water content from the semi-solid jaggery at the end of the plate is then evaporated out. This entire process needs lesser energy than what otherwise would be required in boiling alone.

    During this process, the thermal and physical properties of the fluid change with respect to time and space, both. Therefore, a comprehensive mathematical model (this work was presented at an international conference, MIMT 2011, in Singapore) was developed, using MATLAB, to analyze and study this intricate phenomenon. This model can be used as a handy tool to design an industrial scale system.

    The experimentation and validation of this model were carried out using sugarcane as working fluid.

    During these experiments, we realized an issue with dis-lodging with ice from the refrigerated plate. An innovative prototype was designed with a mechatronic system with piezo-electric crystals. The new technology is patented (410/MUM/2012)

    See More

    Scheffler Concentrator

    Duration: October 2010-May 2011
    Research and Development Project (AKSON'S Solar)

    A technology transfer MoU was signed with Mr. Wolfgang Scheffler-an innovator himself, for manufacturing Scheffler Concentrator as an industrial product.

    See More

    Design, Manufacturing, and Testing of Parabolic Trough Concentrator (PTC)

    Duration: Research and Development Project (AKSON'S Solar June 2010-March 2011)
    Final Year Project (July 2009-May 2010, VIT, Pune, India)
    Adviser and Examiner:

    M. D. Akole (Managing Director, AKSON'S Solar) and Prof. K. Sundaram (VIT, Pune, India)

    Background:

    The project was aimed to provide a solution to energy intensive industrial processes such as process heating. In India, many small and medium scale industries (SMEs) spend a hefty amount of their income for fuels (which are used for these processes). India being geographically situated in earth's Sun-Belt, concentrated solar can precisely be technology which can provide a feasible solution.

    Few constraints, which were considered while defining the problem statement, were the initial cost, space, complexity of the operation, maintenance cost and manufacturing intricacies due to locally available resources.

    Description:

    This project was a Bachelor's thesis, first, and then it was further pursued to develop a commercial industrial product.

    See More

    AKSON'S PENTA -Solar Water Heating System

    Duration: November 2010-May 2011
    Research and Development Project (AKSON'S Solar)
    Description:

    Scaling, inside water tanks in a Solar Water Heating system, because of hard water is a problem needed to be addressed to develop new market prospects for the company.

    An Innovative five layered polymer tank was developed and tested and a very cost-effective product was developed to explore rural markets in India.

    • Product developed as a scaling immune system.

    • A commercial product for the company

    See More

    Publications

    Patent

    Title: Freeze Concentration System

    Status: Granted: Awaiting Patent Number
    Patent Application Number in Indian Patent Office: 410/MUM/2012
    # Recent News: Final Patent specifications have been filed on February 14th, 2013.

    Publications

    1. Roger B. Chen, Katie McConky, Rachel Bosley, Ranjit R. Desai, "A Queueing Analysis of Operational Inefficiency in Public PEV Charging Stations", Presented in 97th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board, Washington, DC, January 2018.

    2. Ranjit R. Desai, Roger B. Chen, William Armington, "A Pattern Analysis of Daily Electric Vehicle Charging Profiles: Operational Efficiency and Environmental Impacts", Volume 2018, Article ID 6930932, 15 pages https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/6930932

    3. Ranjit R. Desai, Roger B. Chen, William Armington, "A Pattern Analysis of Daily Electric Vehicle Charging Profiles: Operational Efficiency and Environmental Impacts", Presented in 96th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board, Washington, DC, January 2017.

    4. Abhishek B. Sahasrabudhe, Ranjit R. Desai, and Siddharth K. Jabade, "Modeling and Simulation of a Freeze Concentration Technique for Sugarcane Juice Concentration", Conference proceedings of 2nd International Conference on Mechanical, Industrial and Manufacturing Technologies 2011(MIMT 2011) vol. 1, pp. 303-306. (IEEE Catalog Number: CFP1123M-ART, ISBN: 978-1-4244-9265-7)

    5. Abhishek B. Sahasrabudhe, Ranjit R. Desai, and Siddharth K. Jabade, "Freeze Concentration of Sugarcane Juice in a Jaggery Making Process-Modelling", International Journal of Modelling and Optimization vol. 1, no. 2, pp. 118-121, 2011. (DOI: 10.4028/www.scientific.net/AMM.110-116.2768)

    6. Ranjit R. Desai, Abhishek B. Sahasrabudhe, Kalyana Sundaram, "A Review of Developments in Solar Parabolic Trough Concentrator Technology", Conference Proceedings 'Energetic 2010', Bangaluru, India.

    Get In Touch

    I would love to hear from you.

    Send me an email or leave your message below.

    Ranjit Desai

    I'm currently located in Rochester, NY. Feel free to contact me.