Daniel Attinger

  • Associate Professor
  • Mechanical Engineering

Main Office

2036 Black Engr
Ames, IA
Phone: 515-294-1692


  • ScD, Technical Sciences, Eidgenoessische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zurich, Switzerland, 2001
  • BS and MS, Mechanical Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland, 1997

Interest Areas

  • Micro- and Nanofluidics
  • Convective Heat Transfer
  • Single Droplet/Bubble Dynamics
  • Visualization, Engineering and Simulation of Multiphase Flow
  • Multiscale Transport Phenomena for Energy and Forensics Applications

Brief Biography

Attinger is an Associate Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Iowa State University. After working as an engineer in the nanotechnology industry, he became faculty member at Stony Brook and Columbia University, before joining Iowa State in 2011. His scholarship is in fluid dynamics and heat transfer, with applications in energy technologies, multiphase microfluidics and bloodstain pattern analysis. He has co-authored more than 80 peer-reviewed articles, edited four books, and written several book chapters and critical reviews. He has given ten keynote lectures at international conferences, and 80 invited talks in the Americas, Asia and Europe. He is the recipient of a 2001 medal for outstanding Ph.D. thesis at ETH Zurich, a US National Science Foundation CAREER award, the 2012 ASME ICNMM Outstanding Researcher Award, the 2014 Professor of the Year award presented by the mechanical engineering honor society Pi Tau Sigma, and a 2016 Research Fellowship of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Research Fellowship. After their postdoc or PhD, several members of his research group have assumed faculty positions in research universities or leading roles in the technology industry. Attinger is the first in his family to attend college. He is also an Adjunct Professor in the Forensic Science Program of the University of the West Indies, Jamaica, and the co-inventor of four US and international patents. Attinger is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Selected Publications

  • Xiao, J., H. A. Stone and D. Attinger (2012). “Source-like solution for radial imbibition into a homogeneous semi-infinite porous medium.” Langmuir 28(9): 4208-4212.
  • N. Kim, Z. Li, C. Hurth, F. Zenhausern, S.-F. Chang, and D. Attinger, “Identification of fluid and substrate chemistry based on automatic pattern recognition of stains,” Analytical Methods, 2012, 4(1), 50-57 (with front cover figure)
  • Betz, A., J. Xu, H. Qiu, and D. Attinger, Do surfaces with mixed hydrophilic and hydrophobic areas enhance pool boiling? Appl. Phys. Lett. 97, 141909 (2010); doi:10.1063/1.3485057.
  • R. Bhardwaj, X. Fang, P. Somasundaran, and D. Attinger, Self-assembly of particles from evaporating colloidal droplets: role of the pH and proposition of a phase diagram, Langmuir, 2010, vol. 26 (11), pp. 7833-7842.
  • Xu J. and Attinger D, Drop on demand in a microfluidic chip, Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, Vol 18, pp 065020, 2008.
  • Xu, J. and D. Attinger, Acoustic excitation of superharmonic capillary waves on a meniscus in a planar microgeometry, Physics of Fluids, 2007. 19: p. 108107.
  • D. Attinger, Z. Zhao, and D. Poulikakos, An Experimental Study of Molten Microdroplet Surface Deposition and Solidification: Transient Behavior and Wetting Angle Dynamics, ASME Journal of Heat Transfer Vol. 122 (3), pp. 544-556, 2000
  • Attinger, D., S. Haferl, Z. Zhao, and D. Poulikakos, Transport Phenomena in the Impact of a Molten Droplet on a Surface: Macroscopic Phenomenology and Microscopic Considerations. Part II: Heat Transfer and Solidification,” in Annual Reviews of Heat Transfer, Vol. XI, C.L. Tien, Editor. 2000. pp. 65-143.