Karuna Koppula Headshot

Karuna Koppula

Senior Lecturer
Department of Chemical Engineering
Kate Gleason College of Engineering

Office Location

Karuna Koppula

Senior Lecturer
Department of Chemical Engineering
Kate Gleason College of Engineering


B.Tech., Andhra University (India); MS, University of New Hampshire; Ph.D., Michigan State University


Dr. Karuna Koppula received B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Andhra University, India, her M.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Hampshire, and her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at Michigan State University. Her Ph.D. research focused on the field of turbulent flow modeling. During her graduate studies, she worked as an intern at Bechtel National Inc. where she used CFD Simulations to understand multiphase flow in Pulse Jet Mixers. Her Master’s thesis research was on gas diffusion layers in PEM fuel cells.

Dr. Koppula joined RIT in 2009 as a visiting faculty in the Mechanical Engineering department and taught courses on problem solving with computers, fluid mechanics, materials science and numerical methods. She later joined the department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering in 2010 and since then taught various courses and laboratories for the undergraduate program. She currently teaches Continuum Mechanics I and II, Analytical techniques II, Chemical engineering insights, Chemical engineering principles and processes labs. She received Norman A. Miles Award for academic teaching excellence in 2012 (selected by the Norman A. Miles Award student recipient) and FEAD grant in 2013.

Following are her areas of research interests

  • Particle manipulation by insulator based dielectrophoresis (iDEP).
  • Microfluidics and Electrokinetics.
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Turbulent Flows and Modeling
  • Fuel Cells

Recent Publications

  • Gencoglu, A., Olney, D. N., LaLonde A., Koppula, K. S., Lapizco-Encinas, B.H., “Particle Manipulation In insulator based Dielectrophoretic Devices”, in press, Journal of Nanotechnology in Engineering and Medicine, 2013. DOI: 10.1115/1.4025368
  • Gencoglu, A., Olney, D. N., LaLonde A., Koppula, K. S., Lapizco-Encinas, B.H., “Dynamic microparticle manipulation with an electroosmotic flow gradient with low frequency alternating current dielectrophoresis”, accepted, Electrophoresis, 2013.
  • Koppula, K. S., Muthu, S., Bénard, A., Petty, C. A., “The URAPS closure for the normalized Reynolds Stress”, Physica Scripta, Vol. 88, T155, 2013, DOI: 10.1088/0031-8949/2013/T155/014052.
  • Koppula, K. S., Bénard, A., Petty, C. A., “Turbulent Energy Redistribution in Spanwise Rotating Channel Flows”, Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 2011, Vol. 50 (15), pg. 8905–8916.
  • Koppula, K. S., Bénard, A., Petty, C. A., “Realizable Algebraic Reynolds Stress Closure”, Chemical Engineering Science, 2009, Vol 64 (22), Pages 4611-4624.

Currently Teaching

3 Credits
The dynamic behavior of chemical process components is examined. The mathematics of Laplace transforms are examined extensively as a fundamental underpinning of control theory. Block diagrams, feedback control systems, and stability analysis are introduced.
3 Credits
This course introduces the student to more advanced mathematical and numerical methods necessary for engineering analysis. Mathematical problems naturally arising in chemical engineering are used to motivate the course topics and techniques taught. The MATLAB programming environment is utilized to facilitate computation, and students learn to use MATLAB’s inbuilt tools as well as Simulink.. Topics examined include the solution of systems of linear and nonlinear equations and the solution of ordinary and partial differential equations (initial and boundary value problems). Some important topics covered in CHME-301 are re-examined in the MATLAB environment, such as roots of equations, curve fitting, and numerical integration and differentiation
3 Credits
This course covers the analysis and design of chemical processes for the separation and purification of mixtures. The course includes an introduction to the fundamentals of diffusion leading up to mass transfer coefficients and their use in solving a variety of engineering problems. Design methodologies are examined for equilibrium based processes (such as absorption, stripping, and distillation). Rate-based separation processes, including packed columns and batch adsorption, are examined and contrasted with equilibrium-based processes.
3 Credits
This course is the continuation of Continuum Mechanics I, and focuses on fluid flow and heat transfer on a differential scale. Commonly-used approximations to the equations of fluid mechanics are considered, such as creeping, potential, and boundary layer flows. Scaling is introduced as a means of characterizing these regimes. General local differential equations and boundary conditions describing heat transfer are derived and solved in a variety of configurations. Simplifying approximations of conduction, convection, and radiation dominated heat transfer are introduced, and combined modes of transfer are analyzed. The performance of heat exchangers is analyzed for a variety of common configurations.
1 Credits
This course examines how chemical engineering analysis can be applied to address some of society’s current and future challenges. Particular attention is focused on the size and scale of a system and its affect on the engineering constraints and the ultimate solution of problems. The course enables students to recognize that the processes and equipment that chemical engineers design to solve local problems affect the broader problems that society faces, such as the supply of energy and preservation of the environment. The course demonstrates the power of the system balance as an essential tool for engineering analysis, and provides students with some elementary training in its use.
3 Credits
Fundamentals of static and flowing fluids are examined on both large-scale (control volumes) and local differential scales. Forces on solids due to static and flowing fluids are determined. Head losses and pumping requirements are considered in piping systems. The art of engineering approximation is examined through estimates of forces due to flow on solids, as well as various limiting cases involving internal pipe flows with friction factors. Exact solutions of local differential equations of fluid mechanics are considered under both steady state and transient conditions, and these analyses are used to determine forces in control volume analysis of bodies. The important interplay between differential and control volume analyses in solving problems is emphasized.
2 Credits
This course extends the laboratory experience from the previous Chemical Engineering Principles Lab, and focuses on unit operations common to engineering practice. Students work in teams to design experimental procedures on existing equipment, and to in some cases, manipulate experimental apparatus to achieve specific experimental goals.

Select Scholarship

Journal Paper
Gencoglu, Aytug, et al. "Dynamic Microparticle Manipulation With an Electroosmotic Flow Gradient with Low Frequency Alternating Current Dielectrophoresis." Electrophoresis 35. (2014): 362-373. Print.
LaLonde, Alexandra, et al. "Effect of Insulating Posts Geometry on Particle Manipulation in Insulator Based Dielectrophoretic Devices." Journal of Chromatography. (2014): 99-108. Web.
Stevens, Robert J., Steven J. Weinstein, and Karuna S. Koppula. "Theoretical Limits of Thermoelectric Power Generation from Exhaust Gases." Applied Energy. (2014): 80-88. Print.
Gencoglu, Aytug, et al. "Particle Manipulation In Insulator Based Dielectrophoretic Devices." Journal of Nanotechnology in Engineering and Medicine 4 (2). 21002 (2013): 1-7. Print.
Koppula, Karuna S., et al. "The URAPS Closure for the Normalized Reynolds Stress." Physica Scripta 88. T155 (2013): 14052. Print.
Koppula, Karuna S. "Turbulent Energy Redistribution in Spanwise Rotating Channel Flows." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 50. 15 (2011): 8905-8916. Web.
Published Conference Proceedings
Gencoglu, Aytug, et al. "Particle Manipulation In Insulator Based Dielectrophoretic Devices." Proceedings of the ASME 2013 International Mechanical Engineering Congress&Exposition. Ed. ASME. San Diego, CA: n.p., Web.