Group Members


Stefano Leonardi

Stefano Leonardi is associate professor at the Department of Mechanical Engineering University of Texas at Dallas. He got a Master degree in Aeronautical Engineering (1999) and a PhD in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (2002) at the University of Rome “La Sapienza”, Italy. He was a Postdoctoral Fellow up to 2006 during which he had research visitor appointments at the University of Newcastle Australia, University of Southampton, Centre of Excellence for Computational Mechanics Politecnico Bari, Institute of Oceanography SCRIPPS San Diego and University of Washington Seattle. From 2006-2010 he was assistant professor at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez. From 2007-2010 he was also Adjunct Professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Troy New York. In 2010 he was promoted to Associate Professor at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez.

Since 2014 he is adjunct professor at the University of Southampton UK. He was awarded as Distinguished Professor in the academic years 2006-2007, 2007-2008, 2011-2012. In July 2009 he was key note speaker at the IUTAM Symposium on “The Physics of Wall-bounded Turbulent Flows on Rough Walls” Cambridge UK. In June 2013 he received from the research academia of UPRM an award for having among the highest h-factor in the college. In July 2013 he joined University of Texas at Dallas, Department of Mechanical Engineering. His research interests are in turbulent flows over rough walls, heat transfer, turbomachinery, superhydrophobic surfaces, wind turbines and oceanography. His numerical results have contributed to an improved understanding of the effect of roughness on turbulent flows and heat transfer. He published over 25 journal papers and 60 peer review conference proceeding including a seminal paper on DNS of turbulent flows over rough surfaces.

Current Graduate Students

Kenneth Carrasquillo

Kenneth Carrasquillo graduated in 2010 obtaining a Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez. After working for the Durability division of Infotech Aerospace Services, a Pratt and Whitney subsidiary, he developed an interest for turbine airfoil cooling schemes hence joining the masters program on 2012 to broaden his knowledge and research experience on the field.

Edgardo García

Edgardo García obtained his bachelor degree in May 2011 from the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of Puerto Rico where he continued his graduate studies in the area of computational fluid dynamics since August 2011. His research interests are in Ocean Modeling, Physical Oceanography and coastal oceanography. He is part of a research group affiliated to the Caribbean Coastal Ocean Observing System (CariCOOS).

Miguel Solano Cordoba

Miguel Solano Cordoba was born in Cali, Colombia in May 1989. He recently graduated magna cum laude from Mechanical Engineering at the University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez campus. As an undergraduated he worked in CFD simulations in turbine blades using turbulators as well as porous materials and GDL of fuel cells. Currently his research involves ocean modelling in the Caribbean as part of a project by NOAA called CariCOOS or Caribbean Coastal Ocean Observong System. His hobbies include soccer, biking, running, swimming and bodyboarding.


Ricardo J. Bonilla Alicea

Ricardo J. Bonilla Alicea obtained his Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus. He is currently completing a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the same institution. Bonilla performs Reynolds Averaged Navier Stokes(RANS) and Large Eddy Simulations(LES) simulations of turbine blade cooling channels using the CFD Package FLUENT. Bonilla is interested on surface roughness studies and its applications as well as wall bounded turbulent flows. He enjoys working in cars and outdoor activities as hobbies.

Benjamin Cruz Perez

Benjamin Cruz Perez graduated in 2008 from the Mechanical Engineering Department and continued his graduate studies which completed in 2010. His research within the lab was on understanding the turbulent flow and heat transfer characteristics on a channel with low aspect ratio pin fins. Currently, Benjamin is at the Ohio State University doing Ph.D. studies in Biomedical Engineering where he conducts research in ocular biomechanics.

Tony Martínez

Tony Martínez obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of Puerto Rico in 2010 and finished his masters in May 2012. His interests are renewable energy and computational fluid dynamics. His research was in numerical simulation of wind turbine wakes. Tony’s research was tied to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). He is now a PhD student at Johns Hopkins University working on wind energy aerodynamics. And yes, that is a wind turbine tie!

Glenn C. Vidal-Urquiza

Glenn C. Vidal-Urquiza received his B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from the National University of Trujillo at Peru in 2005. For the next year he started his Graduate studies in the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez, where he obtained his M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering in the area of thermal science (June, 2008) under the supervision of Dr. Stefano Leonardi. The research was focused in studied the behavior of turbulent flow over a triangular bluff-body flameholder by Direct Numerical Simulations (DNS). Nowadays, he is fourth year Ph.D student in the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Puerto Rico in Mayagüez Campus. Under the mentorship of the Dr. Ubaldo M. Córdova-Figueroa, he is studying the behavior of self-propelled colloidal particles sensitive to external magnetic fields using Brownian/Stokesian dynamics simulations. His research interests are fluid dynamics, heat transfer and transport phenomena, as well as colloidal physics, particularly the mechanical and transport properties of colloidal dispersions, suspensions, etc.