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Summary

Aerospace Engineer and PhD in mechanical engineering with expertise in high-performance computing and machine learning. Keen at developing skills in computer vision techniques. A brief summary of expertise:

  • HPC programming in Python.
  • Machine learning with PyTorch.
  • CFD simulation with OpenFOAM.
  • PIV experimental skills.
  • Cloud computing, GPU computing.
  • Administration of HPC system.

Technical skills

Scientific programming

  • CAD: Blender · CATIA
  • CFD: FEniCS · Fluent · OpenFOAM
  • Programming: C++ · MATLAB · Python · R · Shell
  • Python Libraries (HPC): CuPy · Cython · Dask · H5py · MPI4py · Numba · NumPy · Pandas · SciPy
  • Python Libraries (ML): PyTorch · Scikit-learn
  • Python Libraries (Plotting): Dash · Matplotlib · Scikit-image

Software development

  • Automation: Ansible
  • CI/CD: Git (Github, Gitlab) · Travis CI
  • Cloud: Amazon AWS (EC2)
  • Container: Docker · Kubernetes · Sarus · Vagrant
  • Database: InfluxDB · MariaDB
  • Embedded: Arduino · Raspberry Pi · NVIDIA Jetson Nano
  • HPC: SLURM
  • Markup / Typesetting: Jinja · LaTeX · Markdown · MkDocs · Pandoc · Vim
  • Monitoring: Grafana
  • OS: Linux (Arch, Fedora, Ubuntu, Rocky Linux) · MacOS · Windows
  • Web: CSS · HTML5 · Nginx

Academic & professional experience

Postdoctoral researcher — Empa (Zürich, Switzerland)
June 2019 — Present

  • Application of machine learning in quantitative flow visualization.
  • Supervised optical flow algorithms for PIV.
  • Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN) in PyTorch.
  • Additional responsibilities: Deputy Laser safety officer (LSO), deputy data management, Lab HPC support, and fluid tunnel support.

Scientific Assistant — ETH Zürich (Zürich, Switzerland)
May 2015 — May 2019

  • Numerical and experimental research at Empa.
  • Neutron radiography at Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI).
  • Teaching assistant for Application of CFD in buildings.
  • Supervision of master thesis project: Praharsh Pai Raikar

Education

Doctor of Sciences (Dr. sc.) — Mechanical Engineering
ETH Zürich, Switzerland
2015 — 2019

Thesis: Impact of Vegetation on Urban Microclimate
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Jan Carmeliet

  • Development of a coupled soil-vegetation-air-radiation model in C++ within the OpenFOAM library.
  • Wind tunnel study of flow past model and natural plants using PIV.
  • X-ray tomography of small natural plants and high-performance big data analysis in python (HDF5, scikit-image, dask, numba).
Master of Science (ir.) — Aerospace Engineering
Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
2011 — 2014

Major: Aerodynamics and Wind Engineering
Thesis: Hybrid Eulerian-Lagrangian Vortex Particle Method: Developing a fast and accurate numerical method for the application of Vertical-Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT).
Advisor: Prof. dr. ir. Carlos Simão Ferreira

  • Development of a high-performance numerical method in python with cython and GPU (CUDA) acceleration.
Bachelor of Science (ir.) — Aerospace Engineering
Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
2008 — 2011

Minor: Wind energy and Sustainability
Thesis: Designing a multi-purpose autonomous aerial monitoring aircraft.

  • Design a UAV that can cope with severe weather conditions, while performing a variety of sensing and monitoring tasks.

Languages

  • English (Native)
  • German (Conversational)
  • Malayalam (Fluent)
  • Dutch (Basic)

Awards

  1. Outstanding Oral Presentation at 13th Symposium on Urban Environment, Jan 2017, Seattle, USA
  2. Young Best Research Award at 4th International Conference on Countermeasures to Urban Heat Island, May 2016, Singapore.

Publications & Presentations

Journals

  1. Manickathan, L., Mucignat, C., Lunati, I. (2022). Kinematic training of convolutional neural networks for particle image velocimetry. Measurement Science and Technology
  2. Manickathan, L., Defraeye, T., Carl, S., Richter, H., Allegrini, J., Derome, D., & Carmeliet, J. (2022). A study on diurnal microclimate hysteresis and plant morphology of a Buxus sempervirens using PIV, infrared thermography, and X-ray imaging. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 313, 108722.
  3. Manickathan, L., Defraeye, T., Allegrini, J., Derome, D., & Carmeliet, J. (2018). Parametric study of the influence of environmental factors and tree properties on the transpirative cooling effect of trees. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 248, 259-274.
  4. Manickathan, L., Defraeye, T., Allegrini, J., Derome, D., & Carmeliet, J. (2018). Comparative study of flow field and drag coefficient of model and small natural trees in a wind tunnel. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening, 35(December 2017), 230–239.

Preprints

  1. Manickathan, L., Defraeye, T., Carl, S., Richter, H., Allegrini, J., Derome, D., & Carmeliet, J. (2019). Unveiling dynamic changes in the diurnal microclimate of a Buxus sempervirens with non-intrusive imaging of flow field, leaf temperature, and plant microstructure.
  2. Palha, A., Manickathan, L., Ferreira, C. S., & van Bussel, G. (2015). A hybrid Eulerian-Lagrangian flow solver [Numerical Analysis; Fluid Dynamics]. 27.

Manuscripts

  • PhD thesis: Manickathan, L. (2019). Impact of vegetation on urban microclimate. ETH Zurich.
  • Master thesis: Manickathan, L. (2014). Hybrid Eulerian-Lagrangian Vortex Particle Method. In Msc, Technical University of Delft.

Selected conferences

  1. Manickathan, L., Kubilay, A., Defraeye, T., Allegrini, J., Derome, D., & Carmeliet, J.: Integrated CFD vegetation model with soil-plant-air water dynamics for studying the cooling potential of vegetation in an urban street canyon. 10th International Conference on Urban Climate/14th Symposium on the Urban Environment, New York, NY, USA, 6 - 10 August 2018.
  2. Manickathan, L., Defraeye, T., Allegrini, J., Derome D., & Carmeliet, J.: Conjugate Vegetation Model for Evaluating Evapotranspirative Cooling in Urban Environment. 97th AMS Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA, USA, 2017.
  3. Manickathan, L., Defraeye, T., Allegrini, J., Derome, D., & Carmeliet, J.: Aerodynamic characterization of model vegetation by wind tunnel experiments. 4th International Conference on Countermeasures to Urban Heat Island, Singapore, 2016.