Professor Patrick E. Hopkins


Patrick’s Google Scholar Profile


Patrick is a Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at U.Va, with courtesy appointments in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Department of Physics.  Patrick received his Ph.D. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from University of Virginia in 2008, following a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a B.A. in Physics at U.Va. in 2004.  He spent 3 years as a Harry S. Truman Postdoctoral Fellow at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, NM from 2008 – 2011.  Patrick began his faculty appointment at U.Va. in 12/2011 as an Assistant Professor, was promoted to Associate Professor in 8/2015, and promoted to Professor in 7/2018.  Patrick is a recipient of the AFOSR and ONR Young Investigator Awards, the ASME Bergles-Rohsenow Young Investigator Award in Heat Transfer, and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).




Principal Scientist

John Gaskins, Ph.D.



John graduated with his Ph.D. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from the University of Virginia in 2013 following a B.S. in Civil Engineering and an M.E. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.  His Ph.D. focused experimental methods and analytical solutions used to determine elastic-plastic properties of sub-micron thin films via indentation testing of microfabricated structures.  He is currently a Senior Scientist in the ExSiTE group, focusing on thermal transport in composites at high temperatures and thermal mitigation of high power, high frequency devices.


Senior Scientist

Ashutosh (Ash) Giri



Ashutosh (Ash) received his B.S degree in Physics from Adelphi University in 2010 and his M.S degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of Pittsburgh in 2012. For his Masters, he studied the mechanical behavior of nanoporous metals through atomistic modeling as member of the Computational Nanomechanics group at University of Pittsburgh.  In 2016, he received his PhD at UVA in the ExSiTE Lab, focusing on experimental and computational studies of electron and phonon thermal transport and coupling in thin films and hybrid multilayers.  He is currently a Senior Scientist in the ExSiTE group.


Postdoctoral  Associate

Yee Rui Koh, Ph.D.



Yee Rui received his M. S. and Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University following his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of Technology, Malaysia. He has a wide range of research interest across various disciplines, include characterization of the thermal, electrical and thermoelectric properties of the materials. He also involved in the theoretical analysis of the design of the thermoelectric device, both cooler, and generator during his Ph.D. program. Yee Rui is currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate in ExSITE group.  


Postdoctoral  Associate

Ellie Radue, Ph.D.



Ellie received her B.A. from Mount Holyoke College in Physics in 2009. She went on to do her graduate work at the College of William and Mary, receiving her Masters in 2012 and her PhD in 2016. Her graduate research looked at the dynamics of the insulator-metal transition of Vanadium dioxide thin films; and how they change based on the microstructure of the films. She started as a postdoctoral research associate at UVA in 2016. Her current research focuses on plasmonic contributions to heat capacity in thin films.


Postdoctoral  Associate

Tina Rost, Ph.D.



Tina graduated with a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from North Carolina State University in 2016, following both a B.S. and an M.S. in Physics from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Her Ph.D. focused on the development and characterization of a novel class of oxide systems stabilized through configurational disorder, named “Entropy Stabilized Oxides”.   Tina is currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the ExSITE group, focusing on experimental methods to test thermal properties at extremely high temperatures and thermal transport in entropy-stabilized oxides, carbides, nitrides and diborides.




Ph.D. student

Mars Aryana



Kiumars (Mars) received his B.S degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of Birjand in 2015 and his M.S degree from Miami University in 2018. For his masters, his focus was on the self-assembly of multi-element colloidal particles using Molecular Dynamic simulations and computationally investigated their acoustic and optical properties. He joined the ExSiTE lab in 2018 as a PhD student and is currently working on the thermal transport in phase change non-volatile memory devices as a part of a joint project between UVA and Western Digital.


Ph.D. student

Shafkat Bin Hoque



Shafkat received his B.S. degree from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) and his M.S. degree from Auburn University. His research background is in experimental micro and nano-scale heat transfer. He joined UVA from fall 2018 as a PhD student and is working on high temperature thermal conductivity measurements.


Ph.D. student

Jeff Braun



Jeff received his B.S in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland in 2012.  He then worked for two years at Key Technologies and Office of Naval Intelligence before beginning graduate school at U.Va. in the Fall of 2014.  He is currently a PhD student in the department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at UVa.  Jeff is a recipient of a University of Virginia Jefferson Fellowship.


Ph.D. student

Mallory E. DeCoster



Mallory E. DeCoster received a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Denver (Denver, CO), and an M.S. in Remote Sensing Intelligence from the Naval Postgraduate School (Monterey, CA). After her masters, she worked in the intelligence community within the department of defense in the development and application of remote sensing tools to the warfighter. She is now an associate at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physical Lab where she specializes in spectroscopy and remote sensing. She is also currently pursuing her PhD in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at U.Va. researching nanoscale thermal transport processes in superlattices.


Ph.D. student

Tyler Grant



Tyler was raised in Rolla, Missouri, where he graduated from Missouri University of Science and Technology in 2018 with B.S. in Ceramic Engineering. While at Missouri S&T, he worked as an undergraduate research assistant with Dr. Wayne Huebner and Dr. Robert Schwartz exploring processing techniques for sputter deposition of thin film capacitors for multilayered integrated circuits. Currently, Tyler is pursuing his PhD in the department of Materials Science and Engineering at UVa. Tyler is co-advised by Prof. Jon Ihlefeld in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, and is conducting research in both the ExSiTE Lab and in Prof. Ihlefeld’s Multifunctional Thin Film Group.


Ph.D. student

Drew Kellier



Drew received a B.S. in Materials Science from North Carolina State University in 2017. He is pursuing his PhD in Materials Science and Engineering at U.Va. researching ultrafast heat transport processes and plasmon scattering in nanostructures and at their interfaces.


Ph.D. Student

Hans Olson



Hans received his B.S. degree in Physics at James Madison University in 2016. Under the guidance of Dr. Costel Constantin, he spent two years of his undergraduate career studying the thermoelectric properties of manganese oxide in powder and thin film forms. Currently, he is a PhD student at the department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at UVa. Hans is a recipient of the Virginia Commonwealth Fellowship.


Ph.D. Student

Ethan Scott



Ethan received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Virginia in 2015. As an undergraduate, he researched at CVeSS Labs at Virginia Tech, the Engineering Research Center for Extreme Ultraviolet Science and Technology at the University of Colorado Boulder, the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics (JILA) in Boulder, and also UVa’s Polarized Target Group in the Department of Physics. His prior research focused on energy harvesting, ultrafast laser metrologies, and the physics of radiation damage and dynamic nuclear polarization. He is currently pursuing a PhD in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.


Ph.D. Student

John Tomko



John received his B.S. in Physics from Rutgers University in 2016. His undergraduate research focused on studying laser-material interactions and mechanisms of high-energy laser ablation. He is currently a PhD student in the department of Materials Science and Engineering at U.Va.




Matt Caplan (Undergraduate Research Assistant: 2013)

Nan “Vinnie” Chen (High School Intern: Summer 2013)

Ramez Cheaito, Ph.D. (Ph.D., 2015, Postdoc: 2015 – 2016)

Caitlin Crawford (Undergraduate Research Assistant: 2014 – 2015)

Bryce H. Crane (REU Student: Summer 2012; Undergraduate Research Assistant: Summer 2013)

Brian Donovan, Ph.D. (Ph.D., 2016)

John C. Duda, Ph.D. (Postdoc: 2012 – 2013)

Brian M. Foley, Ph.D. (Ph.D., 2016)

Ashutosh Giri, Ph.D. (Ph.D., 2016)

Caroline Gorham (Graduate Student: 2012-2013)

Dave Henry (Summer Research Associate: Summer 2013)

Kelsey Meyer (M.S., 2016)

Chester Szwejkowski (M.S., 2018)

Sofie Ravesteijn (Undergraduate Research Assistant: 2015 – 2017)