Principal Investigator

Pirouz Kavehpour is a Professor in the UCLA Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. He received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from MIT in 2003. His research addresses various aspects of microfluidics and biofluidics, biofuel cells, cardiovascular flow, complex fluids, interfacial physics, micro-tribology, non-isothermal flows, drug delivery systems, and artificial organs. He serves as the Faculty Director of the University of California Leadership Excellence through Advanced DegreeS (UC LEADS) program, a two-year capstone program that offers resources and research opportunities for first generation and minority science and engineering students. He was awarded the L. E. Scriven Young Investigator Award in 2010.

Graduate Students

Sammy is a Ph.D Student in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering department at UCLA with an emphasis on fluid mechanics and heat transfer. His current research involves the thermodynamic numerical modeling, analysis and optimization of a thermal and compressed air energy storage hybrid system. Sammy is strongly motivated to make renewable sources an independent form of sustainable energy through efficient energy storage.

Kelly is a Ph.D student in the Mechanical Engineering department at UCLA with a focus in fluid dynamics. Her primary research area is using rheology to study the material properties of vitreous humor in human eyes with the goal to improve patient treatments for vitreous-related ocular diseases. Kelly is a member of the Society of Women Engineers and enjoys outreach events teaching young students about engineering.

Peggy is a Ph.D student at UCLA in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department with an emphasis in Heat and Mass Transfer. Her research interests are studying heat transfer properties in advanced thermal energy storage, and discovering new applications of these storage systems with existing energy infrastructure. Peggy is a recent graduate from UC San Diego, and she is passionate about sustainability.

Aysan is a bioengineering PhD student at UCLA focusing on collagen crystallization and rheological properties in order to model its polymerization in vitro. Her interests are in biomechanics, medical devices and rheology of biopolymers. Aysan achieved her bachelor's degree of mechanical engineering with business finance from University College London and her final project was on artificial bio-prosthetic heart valves.


  • Gabriela Bran-Anleu, Ph.D
  • Alireza Mohammad Karim, Ph.D
  • Faryar Tavakoli, Ph.D
  • Pooria Sharif-Kashani, Ph.D
  • Brian Hardy, Ph.D
  • Hamarz Aryafar, Ph.D
  • Kevin Lu, Ph.D
  • Rommina Ghavami, M.S.
  • Sofy Kabachek, M.S.
  • Anna Hoang, M.S.
  • Janet Zhen, M.S.
  • Kawika Uechi, M.S.
  • Aleksandra Sasha Lukyanets, M.S.
  • Eliza Honey, M.S.
  • Helen Hani Lou, B.S.
  • Maziar Hemati, B.S.
  • Megan Matal, B.S.
  • Jerry Huang, B.S.