Riley Barta receives ASHRAE New Investigator Award

Riley Barta, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, has received the New Investigator Award from the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) to investigate the practical challenges of low-Global Warming Potential zeotropic refrigerant mixtures.

The award, given to one recipient every year, recognizes new university faculty members and assists them to develop research capabilities in heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration, and related fields. Selections are made based on the recipient's competence in engineering, potential for continued growth as a researcher, and potential for significant development as an educator and academic leader. An ASHRAE New Investigator Award carries a base grant of $50k per year in the first two years, with an additional award of $25K available in the 3rd year.

Riley Barta is an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University’s Ray W. Herrick Laboratories. His research group's focus is thermal systems technology with a focus on the characterization and implementation of environmentally-friendly working fluids. Previously, Dr. Barta spent several years leading the Refrigeration Research Group at the Schaufler Chair for Refrigeration, Cryogenics and Compressor Technology at the TU Dresden in Germany. His research team there conducted experimental and numerical research on vapor compression systems for a broad range of applications, waste heat utilization, refrigerant property characterization and aircraft fuel cell thermal management. Dr. Barta received an Alexander von Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellowship to support additional research focused on zeotropic refrigerant mixtures for applications in high temperature heat pumps during his time at the TU Dresden. Additionally, he received the DKV (German Refrigeration Society) Young Talent Award for his Ph.D. Dissertation on efficiency increasing measures for transcritical Carbon Dioxide refrigeration systems. Dr. Barta is also the recipient of the William E. and Florence E. Perry Teaching Fellowship to teach Thermodynamics as well as the ASHRAE Grant-In-Aid with Life Member Club Distinction for his research on Carbon Dioxide refrigeration technology.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University. Dr. Barta is passionate about teaching Thermodynamics 1 (ME200) as well as the International Refrigeration and Compressor Course (IRCC) in addition to working with and mentoring his research team at the Herrick Laboratories.