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Kirtan Davda

Nuclear Energy


Supervising Faculty: David Donovan and Ezekial Unterberg

Kirtan Davda received his Bachelor of Technology in Electrical Power Engineering with a focus in High Voltage Engineering from India. The keen interest in understanding high voltage plasma led him to pursue his Master of Science in Applied Energy and Electromechanical Systems from University of North Carolina, Charlotte, where he completed his thesis on the topic: Interaction of high voltage plasma with high intensity femtosecond laser. While conducting his research in the laser-plasma interaction, he got an opportunity to work on a prototype nuclear fusion reactor in Karlsruhe, Germany. This research based on fusion, plasma and laser diagnostics intrigued him enough that he decided to pursue a Ph.D. degree at the Bredesen Center. Currently, he is working with the Experimental Plasma Physics Group in the Fusion Materials for Nuclear Systems Division at Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL). At ORNL, he is working with a novel plasma diagnostic tool called, The Filterscope. It is a powerful spectroscopic tool that is remote bandpass radiometer which can be used in high temperature plasma physics, particularly for fusion energy devices, i.e. those producing high levels of radiation.

Other than research, he actively plays Badminton and loves to do oil paintings. He also loves to connect with new people, hike, and explore new destinations. It is his goal to travel 30 countries before he turns 30, with a count of 12 countries traveled as of 2017.


Previous Research:

Nuclear Fusion DEMO Reactor Prototype, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Karlsruhe, Germany

  • Examined and worked on the cooling of the first wall in the DEMO nuclear Fusion Reactor test setup.
  • Evaluated different test section setups to help enhance the Helium Cooling in the first wall of the fusion reactor.
  • Recorded and analyzed the effects of helium cooling in the test setup at different temperatures using LabVIEW.

Femtosecond Filamentation in Air, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

  • Exploring the relation between high voltage plasma and short pulsed high intensity femtosecond laser beam.
  • Working to combine High Voltage Plasma and Femtosecond Pulses, which would produce a confined narrow channel of high energy density plasma and propagate it over long distances.
  • This invention could lead to discovering new boundaries of Control in Rain Making, lightning, remote measurement of electric field, microwave guidance and Remote Sensing of chemicals.

Design and Modelling a Vertical Axis Wind Turbine, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

  • Drafted and developed a J-type vertical axis wind turbine in AutoCAD and Fusion360 software.
  • Modelled and analyzed the J-type Wind Turbine.
  • 3D printed the prototype of J-type Wind Turbine to see the dynamics of the turbine in real world conditions


Master of Science, Applied Energy & Electro-mechanical Systems, University of North Carolina-Charlotte

Bachelor of Technology, Electrical Engineering, Institute of Technology-Nirma University

Awards and Recognitions

Visiting Research Scientist, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

Outstanding Teaching Assistant, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Graduate Research Assistant, University of North Carolina at Charlotte


Google Scholar: Kirtan Davda

Contact Information