Michael K. Jensen

Professor Emeritus, Mechanical Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering

Michael Jensen received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1972 and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Iowa State University in 1976 and 1980, respectively. He began his teaching and research career at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and moved to Rensselaer in 1987. Currently, he is a Professor in the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering and holds a Professional Engineers license. Among many other university activities, he has served as Associate Chair for Graduate Studies in the department, been on the executive committee of the Faculty Senate, and served as the student-elected member on the Institute-wide Promotion and Tenure Committee. As principal investigator on 41 sponsored programs, including 19 multi-year grants from NSF, DOE, NIST, NYSERDA, and industry, and consultant to 25 industry and government organizations, Michael’s research interests have been directed toward convective single- and two-phase heat transfer and the associated fluid flows with an emphasis on these processes in heat exchangers and using enhanced heat transfer techniques. Recent research has focused on microchannel flows and thermal management of electronic systems, solar energy, and fuel cells. With his graduate students (32 MS, 18 PhD), he has performed both fundamental and applied research and has conducted both experimentally and numerically based research on a wide range of topics. Dr. Jensen has published over 180 technical papers, edited 10 volumes, 30 other assorted reports, and has published an undergraduate textbook on thermal and fluids engineering. He has two patents. Michael has been honored as a Fellow of ASME, twice received the student-chosen Lewis T. Assini Undergraduate Teaching and Counseling Award, received the Ralph R. Teetor Award of SAE, and was awarded the RPI School of Engineering Research Excellence Award. He is active in his profession, having served or is serving on editorial boards of four international journals (Journal of Heat Transfer, Experimental Thermal and Fluid Science; Applied Thermal Engineering, Journal of Mechanical Science and Technology), recently was named as Founding Editor-in-Chief of ASME’s newest journal, Thermal Science and Engineering Applications, led the ASME Heat Transfer Division, and appointed as Alternate Delegate to Assembly for International Heat Transfer Conferences. He has been chair or co-chair of six international conferences (including the National Heat Transfer Conference) and has been invited to be on numerous scientific committees for other national and international conferences. He is an active reviewer for numerous international journals and conferences and NSF, DOE, NASA, and NYSERDA proposals.


Ph.D. Iowa State University

Research Focus
  • Heat Transfer
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Heat Exchangers
  • Boiling and Two-Phase Flows
  • Enhanced Heat Transfer
  • Fuel Cells
  • Solar Energy
  • Sustainability
Select Works
  • Christman, K. and Jensen, M.K., 2011, “Effect of Cross Flow Roughness on Solid Oxide Fuel Cells,” Journal of Fuel Cell Science and Technology, Vol. 8 / 024501-1.
  • Gathright, W., Jensen, M.K., and Lewis, D., 2011, “Phase-field model of chemical reactions with an example of a solid electrolyte gas sensor,” Electrochemistry Communications, 13 pp. 520–523.
  • Michna, G.J., Browne, E.A., Jensen, M.K., and Peles, Y., 2011. The effect of area ratio on microjet array heat transfer, International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 54 (9-10), pp.1782-1790, April.
  • Basu, S., Ndaos, S., Michna, G. J., Peles, Y., and Jensen, M. K., 2011, “Flow boiling of R134a in circular microtubes. Part II: Study of critical heat flux condition,” ASME Journal of Heat and Transfer, 133(5), 051503.
  • Basu, S., Ndaos, S., Michna, G. J., Peles, Y., and Jensen, M. K., 2011, “Flow boiling of R134a in circular microtubes. Part I: Study of heat transfer characteristics,” ASME Journal of Heat and Transfer, 133(5), 051502.
  • Zhang, T.J., Wen, J.T., Julius, A., Peles, Y., and Jensen, M.K., 2011, “Stability analysis and maldistribution control of two-phase flow in parallel evaporating channels,” International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, submitted, March.
  • Zhang, T.J., Wen, J.T., Peles, Y., Catano, J., Zhou, R.L., Jensen, M.K., 2011, “Two-phase refrigerant flow instability analysis and active control in transient electronics cooling systems,” International Journal of Multiphase Flow, 37, pp.84-97.
  • Zhou, R.L., Zhang, T.J., Catano, J., Wen, J.T., Michna, G.J., Peles, Y., Jensen, M.K., 2010, “The steady-state modeling and optimization of a two-loop refrigeration system for high heat flux electronics cooling,” Applied Thermal Engineering, 30, pp.2347-2356.