Principal and Funded Investigators

Donal Finn

Biography: Donal Finn obtained his BE degree in Mechanical Engineering from University College Galway (UCG) (now NUIG) in 1985. Between 1985 and 1987, he carried out research on wind convectors (heat pump outdoor heat exchangers) at UCG, which was supported by IVT AB, Sweden, Erinova Industries Ltd, Dublin and the Irish National Board of Science and Technology. In 1987, he was awarded a MEngSc degree by the National University of Ireland (NUI) for this work. In 1988, this research received a best paper award at the annual meeting of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME - Solar Energy Division), held in Boulder, Colorado, USA. Between 1987 and 1989, he continued to work on wind convector and wind evaporator systems with Erinova Industries. In 1989, he joined Hitachi Europe Ltd at the Hitachi Dublin Laboratory (HDL), located at the University of Dublin (Trinity College). While at HDL, he worked initially as a research engineer and later as a research group leader in computer aided engineering. He was awarded a PhD degree in 1996 by the University of Dublin. In 1995, Donal Finn was appointed to a lectureship in Mechanical Engineering at UCD. In 1999, Dr. Finn received a Teaching Fellowship award from the Royal Academy of Engineering, London, which was financially supported by Exxon-Mobil.  In 2004, Dr. Finn was awarded a Research Fellowship by UCD, which allowed him to spend a sabbatical year at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign (UIUC), IL, USA, where he collaborated with the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Research Center (ACRC). In 2008, he received a Teaching and Learning award from UCD. Since 2008, he has been a Senior Lecturer at UCD.

His current research interests lie in the analysis and optimisation of energy conversion systems used in heat pump/refrigeration systems and building energy applications. His specific research focuses on component and system analysis of transport refrigeration and heat pump systems, as well as the optimisation of evaporative cooling and natural/night ventilation in building energy applications.

Dr. Finn has acted as an expert advisor/assessor to Enterprise Ireland, the European Commission - FP5, FP6 and FP7 and Marie Curie programmes and other European Research programmes, as well a reviewer for several journals and international conferences. He has been member of the editorial panel of the journal AI-EDAM (Artificial Intelligence in Engineering Design, Analysis and Design) since 1996.

External Collaborators

  • ThermoKing Ltd, Minneapolis, MN, USA and Galway, Ireland
  • ESB Networks, Dublin Ireland
  • CIAT (Heat Pumps), Culoz, France
  • HiRef (Heat Pumps), Padova, Italy
  • University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign, IL, USA
  • Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, Valencia, Spain
  • KTH (Royal Institute of Technology), Stockholm, Sweden
  • University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal


Utilising time of use surveys to predict water demand profiles of residential building stocks: Irish case study for domestic hot water

Olivier Neu, Simeon Oxizidis, Damian Flynn, and Donal Finn,
Conference Paper Brighton, UK, 11th Sep. 2014 published on 09/09/2014

Natural ventilation in residential building archetypes: a stochastic approach based on occupant behaviour and thermal comfort

Olivier Neu, Valentin Evon, Simeon Oxizidis, Damian Flynn and Donal Finn,
Conference Paper Ottawa, Canada, 10th May 2014 published on 08/05/2014

Exploring the Demand Response Potential of a Smart-Grid Ready House Using Building Simulation Software

Fabiano Pallonetto, Simos Oxizidis, Donal Finn,
Ottawa, Canada, 7-10 May 2014 published on 07/05/2014

Developing building archetypes for electrical load shifting assessment: Analysis of Irish residential stock

Olivier Neu, Brónagh Sherlock, Simeon Oxizidis, Damian Flynn and Donal Finn,
Conference Paper Dublin, Ireland, 3rd Apr. 2014 published on 03/04/2014

Research on techniques for Building Energy Model

Dimitrios-Stavros Kapetanakis, Eleni Mangina, Donal Finn,
Conference Paper Angers, France, 6 Mar. 2014 published on 06/03/2014

High Resolution Space Time Data: Methodology for Residential Building Simulation Modelling

Olivier Neu, Simeon Oxizidis, Damian Flynn, Fabiano Pallonetto, and Donal Finn,
Conference Paper Chambéry, France, 25th Aug. 2013 published on 28/08/2013

Demand Response Optimisation of All-Electric Residential Buildings in a Dynamic Grid Environment: Irish Case Study

Fabiano Pallonetto, Simos Oxizidis, Roisin Duignan, Olivier Neu, Donal Finn,
Conference Paper Chambéry, 25-28 August 2013 published on 25/08/2013

A restful API to control a energy plus smart grid-ready residential building

Fabiano Pallonetto, Eleni Mangina, Donal Finn,
November 5-6, Memphis, USA published on