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Dr. Fletcher Miller  

Fletcher Miller, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering

Phone:  (619) 594-5791
Fax:      (619) 594-
M/C:      1323
Office:    E-323J 

Research Interest:

Dr. Miller received his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 1988. Dr. Miller has broad interests spanning the thermal sciences and sustainable energy. For sixteen years he worked at NASA Glenn Research Center conducting microgravity combustion research in the areas of flame spread over liquids and solids, solid particle combustion, flammability of non-homogeneous gas mixtures, and catalyzed microcombustion. He has significant combustion diagnostic experience including PIV and optical techniques such as interferometry and rainbow schlieren. Prior to joining SDSU he led a NASA team evaluating new test methods for material flammability tests for spacecraft, and is interested in fire prevention, detection, and suppression in ground-based facilities as well. Outside of work, he helped found a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting sustainable energy that is now one of the largest in the country. He is especially interested in developing solar thermal applications in the southwest and California. 

Funding Agencies

Google, California Energy Commission, NIST, Sandia National Laboratory, NASA, DOE


10 Recent Journal Publications

1. Subrata Bhattacharjee, Christopher P. Paolini, Fletcher Miller, Rohit Nagarkar, “Radiation signature in opposed–flow flame spread,”    Progress in Computational Fluid Dynamics, an International Journal, Volume 12, Number 4, pp. 293-301, 2012.
2. Kyle Kitzmiller† and Fletcher Miller, “Effect of Variable Guide Vanes and Natural Gas Hybridization for Accommodating Fluctuations in Solar Input to a Gas Turbine,” ASME Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Vol. 134, pp. 041008-1 to 041008-12, Nov. 2012.
3. Indrek Wichman, Sandra Olson, Fletcher Miller, and Stefanus Tanaya, “Experimental evaluation of flame and flamelet spread over cellulosic materials using the narrow channel apparatus,” Fire and Materials, doi: 10.1002/fam.2143, 2012.
4. Kyle Kitzmiller† and Fletcher Miller, “Thermodynamic Cycles for a Small Particle Heat Exchange Receiver Used in Concentrating Solar Power Plants,”  ASME Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Vol. 133, pp. 031014-1 to 031014-8, August 2011.
5. Sandra L. Olson, Fletcher J. Miller, Saeed Jahangirian, and Indrek S. Wichman, “Flame spread over thin fuels in actual and simulated microgravity conditions,” Combustion and Flame, Vol. 156, pp. 1214-1226, 2009.
6. Sandra L. Olson and Fletcher J. Miller, “Experimental Comparison of Opposed and Concurrent Flame Spread in a Forced Convective Microgravity Environment,” Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, Vol. 32, Issue 2, pp. 2445–2452, 2009.
7. Marcos Villa-Gonzalez†, Anthony Marchese, John W. Easton, and Fletcher J. Miller, “Experimental Measurements of Two-Dimensional Planar Propagating Edge Flames,” Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, Vol. 31, Issue 1, pp. 939-946, 2007.
8. Sandra L. Olson, Fletcher J. Miller, and Indrek S. Wichman, “A new species of fire: Characterizing fingering flamelets using biological population measures,” Combustion Theory and Modeling Vol. 10, No. 2, April 2006, pp. 323–347  Included journal cover photo.
9. Fletcher J. Miller, J. W. Easton, H. D. Ross, and A. Marchese, “Gravitational Effects on Flame Spread Through Non-Homogeneous Gas Layers,” Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, Vol. 29, Issue 2, pp. 2561-2567, 2002.
10. Fletcher J. Miller, H. D. Ross, I. Kim, and W. A. Sirignano, “Parametric Investigations of Pulsating Flame Spread Across 1-Butanol Pools,” Symposium (International) on Combustion, Vol. 28, Issue 2, pp. 2827-2834, 2000. 

Smart Health Institute

SDSU awarded $10M NIH grant

ME Professor, Dr. Kee Moon is one of the PIs on a $10M NIH award entitled "Building Capacity and Infrastructue for Population Health and Health Disparities Research at San Diego State University".

1000 publications

1000+ Scientific Publications by SDSU Professor

Congratulations to Dr. Randall German, ME Professor, for exceeding the milestone of 1,000 scientific publications in powder-based materials and sintering, including 16 books. He is currently the most cited author in his field.


Modeling Sintering Anisotropy

Dr. Eugene Olevsky has received a $630k NSF award to conduct a multi-scale fundamental investigation of sintering anisotropy.

This conceptual schematic shows a small particle solar receiver.

Concentrating Solar Power SunShot Research Award

Dr. Fletcher Miller is the PI on a $3.8M DoE grant for developing a Small-Particle Solar Receiver for High-Temperature Brayton Power Cycles.

Brain Picture

$18M NSF Engineering Research Center

PDF file: download Adobe Acrobat Reader

Dr. Kee Moon leads SDSU's efforts in the NSF Engineering Research Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering. Partner Universities include UW and MIT.

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Department of Mechanical Engineering Job Opportunities


  • Part-Time Faculty (Lecturer) 
  • Instructional Student Assistant
  • Graduate Assistant
  • Teaching Associate