Recent CE graduate receives Chorafas Foundation honor

Siwei Li, a recent Ph.D. graduate in civil engineering, has been awarded the 2014 Chorafas Foundation Award in recognition of her work titled “Modeling of Photovoltaic Thermal Systems with Transpired Solar Collectors Integrated in Building Operation Simulations.” performed under the supervision of Panagiota Karava, assistant professor of civil engineering and construction engineering management.

Li’s dissertation focused on new solar technology involving building-integrated photovoltaic-thermal (BIPV/T) systems that hold promise for building-scale renewable-energy generation. Siwei’s research made significant contributions on solar-collector modeling and design, and integration concepts for energy systems in buildings, including BIPV/T, HVAC and energy storage. Her methodological contributions, including new modeling approaches and prototype predictive control algorithms, enable optimal energy management and integration of solar energy technology in the built environment. With large-scale deployment, this technology is an effective pathway to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with buildings and the need to build new fossil fuel power plants.

Li completed her B.S. and M.S. degrees in mechanical engineering at Tongji University, Shanghai, China, and came to Purdue in 2010. To date, she has published six journal papers and five conference proceedings.

The Dimitris N. Chorafas Foundation was established in March 1992 in collaboration with the Swiss Academy of Engineering Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences, Medical Sciences and Natural Sciences. The foundation funds 20-25 research awards each year to students in Europe, North America, the Middle East and Asia to reward exceptional performance, encourage significant future contributions to science and technology, and help in completing higher degree and significant research projects.