Dr. F. Todd Davidson, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Associate Director, Center for Innovation and Engineering



Dr. F. Todd Davidson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil & Mechanical Engineering, and an Associate Director of the Center for Innovation and Engineering at the United States Military Academy. Dr. Davidson has taught courses on fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, and energy technology and policy during his teaching career at both West Point and the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Davidson’s research focuses on the technical, financial, security and policy challenges related to the interdependent nature of energy systems, including transportation, energy storage, renewable resources, water, food, and oil and gas. Dr. Davidson’s work has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals, including Applied Energy, Desalination, Environmental Research Letters, and the Journal of Turbomachinery. He has also authored publications in national outlets, including Fortune, TheHill, Forbes, ASME Magazine, Bloomberg, and The Conversation. Dr. Davidson has been called upon as an expert to advise the Texas General Land Office, has been interviewed by national media, including NPR’s Marketplace and The New York Times, and testified before the Committee of Agriculture, Water & Rural Affairs within the Texas State Senate. Before joining academia, Dr. Davidson was the CEO & co-founder of nCarbon, Inc., a startup focused on the development of advanced energy storage devices. He started his career as a systems engineer working for Raytheon where he worked on four different missile defense products. Dr. Davidson holds an affiliated research position with the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin and is a Managing Partner with IdeaSmiths, LLC, a consulting firm providing expertise in analyzing energy systems. Dr. Davidson holds a B.S. in Engineering Science from Trinity University and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from UT Austin.

Ongoing Research Projects

Energy and Water Resilience at US Army Installations

Thermal Management in Advanced Gas Turbines

Transportation Energy and Emissions Impacts

Paths to Net-Zero Carbon Emissions

USACE Pumped Hydro Energy Storage

Levelized Cost of Energy Storage

Publications & Presentations

Selected Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Benson, M.J., Bindon, D., Cooper, M., Davidson, F.T., Duhaime, B., Helmer, D., Woodings, R., Van Poppel, B.P., Elkins, C.J., Clark, J.P., “Detailed velocity and heat transfer measurements in an advanced gas turbine vane insert using MRV and IR thermography”, Journal of Turbomachinery February 2022; 144(2): 021009. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4052310


Davidson, F.T., Helmer, D., Parker, C., Lee, C., Kahn, K., Elkins, C.J., Clark, J.P., Humbert, N., Van Poppel, B.P., Benson, M.J. “Detailed Velocity and Heat Transfer Measurements of an Advanced Insert for Impingement Cooling”, International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer (2021)

Davis B.G., Thompson J, Morningstar W, McCool E, Peri V, Davidson FT. “Risk evaluation of ballistic penetration by small caliber ammunition of live-fire shoot house facilities with comparison to numerical and experimental results”. International Journal of Protective Structures. January 2021. doi: https://doi.org/10.1177/2041419620988553

Chapman, A., Itaoka, K., Hirose, K., Davidson, F.T., et al. “A review of four case studies assessing the potential for hydrogen penetration of the future energy system”, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, (February 8, 2019)

Nagasawa, K., Davidson, F.T., Lloyd, A.C., Webber, M.E., “Impacts of renewable hydrogen production from wind energy in electricity markets on potential hydrogen demand for light-duty vehicles”, Applied Energy, Vol. 253, pg 1001-1016, (February 1, 2019)

Alexandratos, S.D., Barak, N., Bauer, D., Davidson, F.T., et al. “Sustaining Water Resources: Environmental and Economic Impact”, ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering, 7 (3), pp 2879-2888 (January 23, 2019) DOI: 10.1021/acssuschemeng.8b05859

Aminfard, S., Davidson, F.T., Webber, M.E., “Multi-layered Spatial Methodology for Assessing the Technical and Economic Viability of Using Renewable Energy to Power Brackish Groundwater Desalination”, Desalination, Vol. 450, pg 12-20, (January 15, 2019)

Belmont, E., Davidson, F.T., Glazer, Y.R., Beagle, E., Webber, M.E., “Accounting for Water Formation from Hydrocarbon Fuel Combustion in Life Cycle Analyses”, Environmental Research Letters, Vol. 12, No. 9, (September 19, 2017)

Beal, C.M., Davidson, F.T., Webber, M.E., Quinn, J.C., “Flare Gas Recovery for Algal Protein Production”, Algal Research, 2016

Cook M.A., King, C.W., Davidson, F.T., and Webber, M.E., “Assessing the Impacts of Droughts and Heat Waves at Thermoelectric Power Plants in the United States Using Integrated Regression, Thermodynamic, and Climate Models.” Energy Reports. 193-203 (2015)

Davidson, F.T., Kistenmacher, D.A., Bogard, D.G., “A Study of Deposition on a Turbine Vane with a Thermal Barrier Coating and Various Film Cooling Geometries”, Journal of Turbomachinery, 136(4), 041009 (April 4, 2014)

Davidson, F.T., Kistenmacher, D.A., Bogard, D.G., “Film Cooling with a Thermal Barrier Coating: Round Holes, Craters, and Trenches”, Journal of Turbomachinery, 136(4), 041007 (April 4, 2014)

Bruce-Black, J.E., Davidson, F.T., Bogard, D.G., Johns, D.R., “Practical Slot Configurations for Turbine Film Cooling Applications”, Journal of Turbomachinery, 133(3), 031020 (Nov 29 2010

Selected Peer-Reviewed Conference Papers


Porcaro, C., Swanton, J., McCoy, B., Davidson, F.T., “Grid-Integrative Efficient Buildings: Leveraging the Federal Build Stock to Support the Future Grid – A Case Study from Central Islip, New York”, International Conference on Sustainable Infrastructure, Dec 2021

Kass, K., Davidson, F.T., “Feasibility of Pumped Hydroelectric Storage Within Existing USACE Facilities: A Methodological Approach”, ASME’s International Mechanical Engineering Conference and Exposition, IMECE2021-69416, November 2021

Blackwell, N., Evans, A., Lee, P., Panlasigui, C., Russell, D., Wells, K., McCarthy., S., McCoy, B., Davidson, F.T., “A Methodology for Risk Assessment to Improve the Resilience and Sustainability of Critical Infrastructure with Case Studies from the United States Army”, ASME’s International Mechanical Engineering Conference and Exposition, IMECE2021-70839, November 2021

Humbert, N., Galante, J., Davidson, F.T., Helmer, D.B., Elkins, C., Tamm, G., Benson, M.J., “Velocity and Heat Transfer Studies of an Impinging Jet Using Magnetic Resonance Velocimetry and Infrared Thermometry”, ASME’s International Mechanical Engineering Conference and Exposition, IMECE2021-71713, November 2021

West, A., Venable, G., Flanagan, M., Harris, E., Davis, B.G., Davidson, F.T., Hanus, J., “Constitutive Modeling and Validation of Sintered Metal Powders Subjected to Large Strains and High Strain Rates”, ASME’s International Mechanical Engineering Conference and Exposition, IMECE2021-71461, November 2021

Davidson, F.T., Tsai, G.T., Webber, M.E., “Estimating the Economic and Energetic Tradeoffs of Mobility Services vs. Conventional Car Ownership” Conference on Transportation Economics, Energy, and the Environment, University of Michigan, October 2018

Davidson, F.T., Dees, J.E., Bogard, D.G., “An Experimental Study of Thermal Barrier Coatings and Film Cooling on an Internally Cooled Simulated Turbine Vane”, ASME Paper No. GT2011-46604

Davidson, F.T., Bruce-Black, J.E., Bogard, D.G., Johns, D.R., “Adiabatic Effectiveness on the Suction Side of a Turbine Vane and the Effects of Curvature at the Point of Film Injection”, ASME Paper No. GT2008-51350