Academic Credentials
  • Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering, Lehigh University, 2023
  • M.Eng., Technical Entrepreneurship, Lehigh University, 2017
  • B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Lehigh University, 2016
Academic Appointments
  • Adjunct Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Lafayette College, 2023
Professional Honors
  • NSF National I-Corps Program Graduate, 2023
  • Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Water Power Technology Office Marine and Hydrokinetic Student Research Program Fellowship, Sandia National Laboratories, 2022-2023
  • Rossin Dean’s Doctoral Fellowship, Lehigh University, 2019
Professional Affiliations
  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) (Member)
  • American Physical Society (APS) (Member)

Dr. Ruhl focuses on engineering challenges in the fields of fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, and heat transfer. Across these disciplines, Dr. Ruhl applies his skills in experimental design, instrumentation and data acquisition, and statistical analysis to provide evidence-based solutions to scientific problems. He has extensive background in the field of turbulence and its impact on marine renewable energy systems. His experimental portfolio includes thermal/fluid analysis on steam power generation, gas turbine engine performance, heat exchanger characterization, wind/water tunnel measurements, and internal combustion engine performance.

Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Ruhl earned his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University. His dissertation work focused on the turbulent flow characterization of high-energy tidal estuaries and the recreation of said turbulence in a laboratory water tunnel. He used various instrumentation techniques including acoustic Doppler velocimetry and hot-wire anemometry to measure flow tailored by a custom-designed active grid turbulence generator in a water tunnel facility. Dr. Ruhl previously held fellowship positions with private companies and national laboratories where he was tasked with analyzing large marine flow datasets collected from tidal energy site measurement campaigns. He used computational tools to filter and process the data to properly characterize the turbulent flow at each site. Through this work, he gained extensive experience with marine renewable energy technologies.

During his graduate studies, Dr. Ruhl also served as an Adjunct Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Lafayette College. He taught a senior-level capstone course on thermal/fluid systems. The course heavily focused on experimental design and analysis and technical presentation skills. Applicable experiments included the investigation of the thermodynamic/fluid principles behind a gas turbine jet engine, a refrigeration system, a heat exchanger setup, a steam-powered turbine, an internal combustion engine, and bluff bodies placed in a wind tunnel.

As an undergraduate researcher, Dr. Ruhl was part of a research group tasked with building a custom-designed 3-D metal printer powered by a MIG welder. The team successfully constructed numerous iterations of the wire and arc additive manufacturing device. Ultimately, the device was used to print deposited layers of stainless steel to investigate the thermal and structural properties of the printed metal.