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Luke A. Johnston
CHELM tiny.png

Myself next to my undergraduate senior design project, a configurable hybrid electric vehicle prototype used in laboratory classes related to hybrid vehicle development at Michigan Technological University.

Solar cellt.png This user is a member with interest and knowledge of Photovoltaics.
Windmill1b.jpg This user is a member with interest and knowledge of Energy.

I am interested in the following topics:

I am an engineering student undergoing a Master's of science program for mechanical engineering at Michigan Technological University (MTU) in Houghton, MI. I have many academic interests including hybrid vehicles and renewable/alternative energies.

About Me[edit]

My motorcycle, a '77 Honda CB750

I've enjoyed the quiet, small college town setting Michigan Tech has had to offer for over 6 years now. After all of this schooling I've found my passion for education to focus around alternative/renewable energies.

When time (and weather) permits, I enjoy numerous activities including the following:

  • Motorcycling
  • Ice Hockey
  • Skiing
  • Broomball
  • Exercising
  • Video Games

Research/Work Projects[edit]


Michigan Technological University's HEV Mobile Laboratory.

MTU HEV Mobile Laboratory[edit]

I am a graduate research assistant working for Michigan Tech's Hybrid Electric Vehicle program.

The program's flagship is a 53 ft semi trailer with expandable section capable of being utilized as both a laboratory and classroom environment. Housed within the trailer on either end is a test cell with a replica of the same powertrain as the CHELM (see below) mechanically coupled with a dynamometer. The two test cells are controlled by four workstations located in the classroom area of the trailer.

Similar to my project of developing the control system of the CHELM powertrain, my responsibility in the mobile lab is the building of the same control system in both test cells as well as installation of sensors, tranducers, and thermocouples for data acquisition.

I also T.A. MEEM/EE4296: Intro to Hybrid Propulsion Lab and MEEM/EE5296 Advanced Hybrid Propulsion Lab

In addition to the HEV Mobile Lab, the program's fleet also includes these production vehicles:

  • 2009 Two 2-mode Saturn Vues
  • 2009 Chevy Malibu BAS mild hybrid
  • 2011 Chevy Volt

Master's Thesis[edit]

My Master's thesis is incorporating a lithium ion battery pack into the CHELM powertrain and developing a drive cycle sustainable charging algorithm for it.

MY5970 Photovoltaics Project[edit]

Enrolled in MY5970: Photovoltaics with Joshua M. Pearce. My involvement in the class includes a semester-long project is to investigate of energy savings of a solar powered "smart" window shade system, as well as design and build a prototype for such a device.


Configurable Hybrid Electric Learning Module (CHELM)[edit]

An undergraduate senior design project focused on creating an open control system for a prototype hybrid electric vehicle designed and built by undergraduate students at Michigan Tech. The goal of the entire project was to develop a configurable platform that would allow students to alter vehicle dynamics associated with the vehicle including but not limited to: gear ratios, weight, aerodynamic drag, and control strategies (torque blending).

Here is a video showcasing this project:



Currently enrolled in a M.S. program in Mechanical Engineering at Michigan Tech.


Degrees obtained from Michigan Tech in December 2010:

  • B.S. in Electrical Engineering
  • B.S. in Computer Engineering