Dr. Yong X. Tao has more than 20 years of research and 17 years of teaching experience. Prior to joining UNT, he was the Associate Dean of the College of Engineering and Computing at Florida International University in Miami, and a Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. An internationally known researcher in fundamentals of thermal sciences, refrigeration system performance, and renewable energy applications in buildings, he was also Director of the Building Energy, Environment, and Conservation Systems Lab (BEECS) and Multi-Phase Thermal Engineering Lab (MPTE) at FIU.
Dr. Tao has produced a total of more than 154 journal publications, book chapters, edited journals and proceedings, and peer-reviewed technical conference papers over the course of his career, and holds two patents. He has received more than 12.2 million dollars of research funding as a single PI or Co-PI in multidisciplinary teamwork projects from the NSF, NASA, Air Force, DSL, DOE, ASHRAE and various industries. He is the Associate Editor of the Journal of Science and Engineering Applications, and a reviewer for several international journals in his research field. Recent research interests include transport phenomena in multiphase media, constructal microchannel heat exchangers, NPCM enhanced heat transfer, low temperature heat transfer, alternative energy, engineering education, and entrepreneurship. Dr. Tao also works closely with researchers within and outside the University, and founded or co-founded such interdisciplinary research initiatives as the Sustainable Construction Research and Education Initiative (SCREI) and Energy Research Group (ERG) at FIU and beyond.
He served as the chairperson of the University Strategic Planning Committee in Infrastructure at FIU until his departure to UNT, in addition to having served departmental Graduate Program Director, Undergraduate Program Director, College Faculty Council Secretary, and HVAC Certificate Program Coordinator, as well as serving as faculty advisor for student organizations.
Dr. Tao is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME), a member of the American Society of Heating Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE). Additionally, he is the web editor of the Heat Transfer Division of ASME, and Editor of ASME Early-Career Technical Journal. He has served on many technical committees for ASME, ASHRAE and AIAA. He was also the Program Chair for the 2009 Summer Heat Transfer Conference of ASME.
In 2005, he was the faculty leader of the award-winning FIU Solar Decathlon entry. Faculty, students and the community collaborated in the construction of a house powered entirely by solar energy, which was entered into this US Department of Energy-backed international competition in the National Mall in Washington D.C. The Solar House is now a landmark of the College of Engineering and Computing at FIU.
In 2008, as Project Director of the Future House USA project, he led a consortium of academics, builders, industry sponsors and lobbyists to represent the US in a ten-country, international demonstration project of renewable energy and environmentally-friendly construction that resulted in a 3,200 sq ft zero-net-energy American House in Beijing, China. On July 16th, 2009, Dr. Tao hosted a visit from US Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke and Secretary of Energy Steven Chu in the American House, and was praised by both Secretaries as playing "vital role in building better collaboration between the United States and China in the area of energy-efficient buildings."
Dr. Tao has regularly been invited to speak since early 2000 to promote renewable energy in new buildings and energy conservation in existing buildings, including features in television, public radio, and periodicals. To further promote this cause on a larger international scale, Dr. Tao, as the Founding Chair, established the first US-EU-China Thermophysics Conference on Renewable Energy held in Beijing in May 2009. He is currently working on several projects related to renewable energy and green buildings, and has also been consulting for start-up businesses, companies exploring new products and building developers in his research areas.
Dr. Tao traveled to Haiti in March 2010 shortly after its catastrophic earthquake, and has led an effort to build a solar-powered medical clinic for the dispersed local population.
Dr. Tao has a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, and a B.S. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Tongji University in Shanghai, China.