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Dr. Jay Kapat is the Pegasus Professor and the Trustee Chair Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. He is also the Founding Director of the Center for Advanced Turbomachinery and Energy Research or CATER, and Associate Director for Florida Center for Advanced Aero-Propulsion. Dr. Kapat joined UCF in 1997. He received his Sc.D. (Doctorate of Science) in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.

He has focused on research on variety of topics related to power generation, aviation and space systems and components for over the past 25 years. These include advanced cooling technologies for gas turbine blades and combustors, thermodynamic design of SCO2 cycles and components, and miniaturized energy systems. He has supervised and graduated 20 Ph.D., 49 MS and 16 BS Honors-in-Major Thesis students. Some of these students have graduated to become Assistant Professors at Purdue and Embry Riddle, Professor at Old Dominion, Researcher at Stanford, and many of them have joined companies such as Mitsubishi, Siemens, GE and Ansaldo. He has secured research funding of $16.5M (his credit only) from sources such as NASA, Siemens, Lockheed Martin, Rini Technologies, US Army, FHTC, GE, Ansaldo. He has over 200 peer-reviewed journal and conference publications, and 12 patents.