Daniel J. Preston



Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Doctoral Degree in Mechanical Engineering

Minor in Mathematics

May 2017 (anticipated)


GPA 5.00/5.00

Linear Algebra, Adv. Calculus



Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Master's Degree in Mechanical Engineering

May 2014


GPA 5.00/5.00



The University of Alabama

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Bachelor's Degree in Mechanical Engineering

Minor in Computer Based Honors Program

May 2012


GPA 4.33/4.00 weighted

C++, Fortran, Linux, Research



Device Research Laboratory

with Dr. Evelyn Wang (Jun. 2012 to present)

Research on heat transfer, fluid mechanics, energy efficiency, and sustainability. Currently focused on condensation on superhydrophobic surfaces and, more specifically, on the removal of droplets from these surfaces by the coalescence mechanism, or "jumping," which shows a 40% improvement in performance compared to state-of-the-art dropwise condensation. Also interested in areas of efficiency improvement during condensation of low-surface-tension fluids.



Alabama Industrial Assessment Center

with Dr. Keith Woodbury (Dec. 2010 to Jun. 2012)

Assisted factories and plants in Alabama with energy conservation, waste reduction, and productivity increases. Researched cost-benefit analysis of retrofit of different types of factory lighting with an emphasis on retrofitting energy efficient systems in place of metal halide and high pressure sodium systems. Other tasks included plant assessments coupled with writing assessment reports to suggest energy saving procedures and policies to plants. Held lead student position, in charge of a 3-member assessment team.



University of Pennsylvania SUNFEST summer REU program

with Dr. Jay Zemel (summer 2011)

Worked on FootPAD project in conjunction with Children's Hospital of Philadelphia to implement self-contained force sensor and data acquisition device in a child's shoe, with the end goal of measuring forces in children's feet and legs and their effects on development. Produced working device with non-obtrusive sensor, circuit board, and power supply internal to the shoe, and calibrated device. Gained experience designing circuits, drafting and cutting circuit boards, soldering sensitive components, and troubleshooting the system, including connection of the device to the software.



Sensor for Characterization of Human Tissue

with Dr. Leila Ladani (Aug. 2010 to May 2011)

Designed and tested combination stress and strain gauges to measure elastic modulus of tissue samples. Most recent work was on macro scale test for proof of concept. Goal of project was to shrink to micro scale to measure changes in stiffness in bodily tissues in vivo, which are signifiers of developing cancer. Presented this research at the 2011 Summer Bioengineering Conference.



Localization with Motes

with Dr. David Grau (Aug. 2009 to May 2010)

Developed programs to localize construction equipment using small radio transceivers attached to computer chips called motes. Used C-based language, nesC.



Delaware River Bridge Commission

with Chip Stracciolini (summer 2009)

Gained experience in the office and field. Caught an error in the billing process that saved the Bridge Commission thousands of dollars. Helped oversee the paving of several major highways including the I-78 revitalization project.



MIT Keck Travel Award in Thermal Sciences

Spring 2017


MIT Green Labs $1k Seed Funding and $5k Innovation Award

Fall 2016


1st of 14 teams in Make Cool ShMIT Hackathon

Feb. 2016


4th of 15 teams in Assistive Technology Hackathon

Feb. 2016


2nd of 16 teams in MakeMe++ Design Driven Innovation Hackathon

Jan. 2016


Graduate Managerial Finance Portfolio Contest Winner

Fall 2015


NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program Fellow

May 2012-present


Tau Beta Pi Fellowship Winner of 40 nationally


May 2012-present


Licensed Engineer in Training


Apr. 2012-present


Catherine J. Randall Premier Award for most outstanding student scholar at The University of Alabama based on GPA, rigor of course study, and extraordinary scholarly or creative endeavor



class of 2012



Charles L. Seebeck Award for outstanding Computer Based Honors student


May 2012


Randall Outstanding Undergraduate Research Award


Oct. 2011


Certified Pump System Assessment Tool Qualified Specialist by DOE


Oct. 2011


Best in SUNFEST Award for best presentation and research in REU


summer 2011


Tau Beta Pi Scholarship Winner of 156 nationally


2011


McWane Research Scholarship


2011


Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement in Mechanical Engineering for highest GPA in class


2010 and 2011


Second place in Engineering at University of Alabama Research Fair


2010


The University of Alabama Presidential Scholarship


2008-2012


Engineering Leadership Scholarship


2008-2012


National Merit Scholar


2008



Senior Design Project - Vulcan Pipe Inc. (Aug. 2011 to May 2012)

Team leader, primary liaison with industry contact, in-depth experience with safety guard design, relays, limit switches, and OSHA industrial safety standards



Computer Based Honors Program Teaching Assistant (Aug. 2009 to May 2012)

Taught review sessions, graded homework assignments, quizzes, and computer programs



The University of Alabama Center for Athletic Student Services (Nov. 2009 to Dec. 2010)

Physics, chemistry, and math tutor for student athletes





Published and In Press


Electrowetting-on-Dielectric Actuation of a Vertical Translation and Angular Manipulation Stage

D.J. Preston, A. Anders, B. Barabadi, E. Tio, Y. Zhu, D.A. Dai, E.N. Wang

Applied Physics Letters, 109(24), 2016


Nanoengineered Materials for Liquid-Vapour Phase-Change Heat Transfer

H.J. Cho, D.J. Preston, Y. Zhu, E.N. Wang

Nature Reviews Materials, 2, p. 16092, 2016


Electrically Induced Drop Detachment and Ejection

A. Cavalli, D.J. Preston, E. Tio, D.W. Martin, N. Miljkovic, E.N. Wang, F. Blanchette, J.W.M. Bush

Physics of Fluids, 28(022101), 2016


Porous Cu Nanowire Aerosponges from One-Step Assembly and their Applications in Heat Dissipation

S.M. Jung, D.J. Preston, H.Y. Jung, Z. Deng, E.N. Wang, J. Kong

Advanced Materials, 10.1002/adma.201504774, 2015


Scalable Graphene Coatings for Enhanced Condensation Heat Transfer

D.J. Preston, D.L. Mafra, N. Miljkovic, J. Kong, E.N. Wang

Nano Letters, 15(5), pp 2902-2909, 2015


Effect of Hydrocarbon Adsorption on the Wettability of Rare Earth Oxide Ceramics

D.J. Preston, N. Miljkovic, J. Sack, J. Queeney, E.N. Wang

Applied Physics Letters, 105(011601), 2014


Jumping Droplet Electrostatic Charging and Effect on Vapor Drag

D.J. Preston, N. Miljkovic, R. Enright, E.N. Wang

Journal of Heat Transfer, 136(8), 2014


Jumping-Droplet Electrostatic Energy Harvesting

N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang

Applied Physics Letters, 105(013111), 2014


Ostwald Ripening During Freezing on Scalable Superhydrophobic Surfaces

N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang

Journal of Heat Transfer, 136(8), 2014


Electric-Field-Enhanced Condensation on Superhydrophobic Nanostructured Surfaces

N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang

ACS Nano, 7(12), 2013


Electrostatic Charging of Jumping Droplets

N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang

Nature Communications, 4(2517), 2013


Condensation on Hydrophilic, Hydrophobic, Nanostructured Superhydrophobic and Oil-Infused Surfaces

N. Miljkovic, R. Xiao, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, I.S. McKay, E.N. Wang

Journal of Heat Transfer, 135(8), 2013


Jumping Droplet Dynamics on Scalable Nanostructured Superhydrophobic Surfaces

N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, S. Adera, Y. Nam, E.N. Wang

Journal of Heat Transfer, 135(8), 2013


Cost-Benefit Analysis of Retrofit of HID Factory Lighting with More Energy-Efficient Alternatives

D.J. Preston, K.A. Woodbury

Energy Efficiency, 6(2), 2013




  1. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang, "Condensation Nucleation Density on Superhydrophobic Surfaces," Proceedings of the 4th Micro/Nanoscale Heat and Mass Transfer International Conference (accepted for oral presentation), Hong Kong, China, December 11-14, 2013.

  2. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang, "Electric Field Manipulation of Charged Jumping Droplets for Enhanced Heat Transfer and Electrokinetic Measurements," Proceedings of the 4th Micro/Nanoscale Heat and Mass Transfer International Conference (accepted for oral presentation), Hong Kong, China, December 11-14, 2013.

  3. D.J. Preston, N. Miljkovic, E.N. Wang, "Scalable Growth of Superhydrophobic Zinc Oxide Nanowires on Common Industrial Substrates for Enhanced Condensation Heat Transfer," Proceedings of the 4th Micro/Nanoscale Heat and Mass Transfer International Conference (accepted for oral presentation), Hong Kong, China, December 11-14, 2013.

  4. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, E.N. Wang, "Transient Pressure-Based Condensation Heat Transfer Measurement," Proceedings of the ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition, San Diego (accepted for oral presentation), CA, November 15-21, 2013.

  5. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang, "Superhydrophobic Surfaces for High Performance Condensation Heat Transfer and Atmospheric Power Generation," Proceedings of the ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition (accepted for poster presentation), San Diego, CA, November 15-21, 2013.

  6. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang, "Ostwald Ripening During Freezing on Scalable Superhydrophobic Surfaces," Proceedings of the ASME Summer Heat Transfer Conference, Minneapolis, MN, July 14-18, 2013.

  7. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, E.N. Wang, "Jumping Droplet Condensation on Structured Superhydrophobic Surfaces for High Performance Heat Transfer," Proceedings of the ASME Summer Heat Transfer Conference, Minneapolis, MN, July 14-18, 2013.

  8. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, R. Mitchell, R. Yang, K.K. Gleason, C.V. Thompson, E.N. Wang, "Electric-Field-Enhanced Jumping-Droplet Condensation," Proceedings of the ASME Summer Heat Transfer Conference, Minneapolis, MN, July 14-18, 2013.

  9. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, R. Yang, K.K. Gleason, E.N. Wang, "Electric Charging Effects on Condensed Droplet Jumping," APS March Meeting, Baltimore, MD, March 18-22, 2013.

  10. N. Miljkovic, R. Xiao, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, I. McKay, E.N. Wang, "Condensation on Hydrophilic, Hydrophobic, Nanostructured Superhydrophobic and Oil-Infused Surfaces," Proceedings of the ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition, Houston, TX, November 9-15, 2012.

  11. N. Miljkovic, D.J. Preston, R. Enright, S. Adera, Y. Nam, E.N. Wang, "Jumping Droplet Dynamics on Scalable Nanostructured Superhydrophobic Surfaces," Proceedings of the ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition, Houston, TX, November 9-15, 2012.


  • Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society, AL-Beta Chapter - Treasurer, 2011-2012

  • Pi Tau Sigma mechanical engineering honor society, AL-Pi Omicron Chapter

  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers active member

  • Society of Physics Students

  • American Physical Society


  • Big Brother for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay (March 2013-present)

  • Volunteer coordination and service through Tau Beta Pi, weekly AP calculus tutoring at Hillcrest High School, canned food drives (2010-2012)

  • University of Alabama Circle K webmaster (2009 to 2010) and club member (2008 to 2010)

  • Alabama Action - Restored Flatwoods Elementary School (2008)

  • Jane Nix Outstanding Service Award, Computer Based Honors Program (2010, 2011)


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