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Artie, an Artificial Heat Transfer Analyst: Testing and Evaluation




2: Mechanical Engineering

Faculty Supervisor:

Tony Patera

Faculty email:


Apply by:

September 18


Tony Patera: patera@mit.edu

Project Description

We are developing an "Artificial Heat Transfer Student" which could earn an A in an undergraduate heat transfer subject. The software will accept problem set-like statements and provide solutions as expected of actual students. Our approach divides the software into two parts: The frontend applies natural language and image processing techniques to translate problem statements into heat transfer specifications. The frontend also summarizes the solution, complete with derivations and justifications, in a technical report and associated graphics. The backend operates on the heat transfer specifications to develop appropriate mathematical models and associated approximate solutions, with particular attention to the most challenging limit — back-of-the-envelope estimates justified through appropriate simplifications of the geometry and physics. In this particular UROP project we will test and evaluate Artie with respect to a representative suite of heat transfer problems. Metrics will include the accuracy of the prediction, the reliability of the error estimates and other assessment measures, the effectiveness of Artie's solution report (document and graphics), and the quality of the user experience more generally. Ultimately, this project may also lead to improved backend algorithms.


2.51 (either taken in Fall 2019, or currently taking in Fall 2020); Matlab experience.