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Science & Engineering Complex
Robinson Hall, Room 168

Tufts University
Medford, MA 02155

504 Boston Ave., Room 112

Tel: 617.627.4575
Fax: 617.627.3058
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> Research
> Curriculum vitae

Luisa Chiesa
Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering


Ph.D., M.S, (Nuclear Engineering), Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2008, 2006
B.S. (Physics), Universita' degli Studi, Milano, ITALY 2001

Research Interests

Dr. Chiesa's primary research area is superconducting materials for energy application. The current research focus is the electro-mechanical behavior of superconducting materials for large magnets used in fusion power devices. Fusion reactors could play a key role in the power production of future generations. To be able to confine the plasma created in the fusion vessel very powerful superconducting magnets are used. During operations those magnets are subjected to extremely large forces that could reduce the overall performance of the superconducting material they are made of jeopardizing the overall performance of the machine. To succeed in building such systems, it is then critical to investigate the electro-mechanical properties of superconducting materials. Experimental work in this subject is performed at Tufts University and in collaboration with several national laboratories.

This research is also of interest for other energy applications such as Superconducting Magnetic Energy Storage (SMES) and Superconducting Transmission Lines. These technologies could play a significant role in areas of power storage and delivery which are the backbone for the successful implementation of renewable energy sources. As it is well known those sources (solar and wind in particular) are inherently intermittent and efficient ways of storing and delivering energy are necessary components to improve their reliability.

Teaching Interests

  • Sustainable energy
  • Thermodynamics and Applied Thermodynamics
  • Cryogenic and superconductivity
  • Strength of materials
  • Mechanics of materials
  • Material Science

Professional Positions

January 2009-Present: Assistant Professor at Tufts University (Mechanical Eng. Dep.)
August 2001-August 2003: Scientific Engineer Associate at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
October 1999-Dec. 2000: Guest scientist at Fermilab National Accelerator Laboratory