Dr David White

Consultant Profile

Dr David White
Senior Lecturer, School of Engineering
P: +64 9 921 9999 ext 8352  |  E: david.white@aut.ac.nz  |  W: www.aut.ac.nz/profiles/engineering/senior-lecturers/david-white3

Links to other web pages: ResearchGate

Qualifications: PhD, ME, BE (Hons), NZCE, TC (Auto Eng)

Memberships & Affiliations: & ASME, PSNZ


Auckland University of Technology Dean's Award for Research Excellence.

Research Areas:

Human upper airway and respiratory mechanics.

Breathing therapies and devices.

Medical device design.

Current Research Projects:

Mucosal behavior during augmented pressure breathing.

Psychophysiological response to pressurised breathing.

Current Consulting Areas & Projects:

Amcor Flexibles Asia Pacific – investigation into plastic cutting.

LiquidStrip filet performance assessment.


Recent Journal Publications

White, D. E., Nates, R. J., & Bartley, J. (2014). A pilot study of an in-vitro bovine trachea model of the effect of continuous positive airway pressure breathing on airway surface liquid. BioMedical Engineering OnLine, 13(1), 1-12. doi:10.1186/1475-925X-13-12.
White, D. E., Al-Jumaily, A. M., Bartley, J., & Sommervell, A. (2011). Nasal Air-Conditioning During Breathing Therapy. Current Respiratory Medicine Reviews, 7(3), 213-225. doi:10.2174/157339811795589414
White, D. E., Al-Jumaily, A. M., Bartley, J., & Somervell, A. (2011). Nasal air-conditioning during breathing therapy. Current Respiratory Medicine Reviews, 7(3), 213-225.
White, D. E., Al-Jumaily, A. M., Bartley, J., & Lu, J. (2011). Correlation of nasal morphology to air-conditioning and clearance function. Respiratory Physiology and Neurobiology, 179(2-3), 137-141. doi:10.1016/j.resp.2011.07.009

Recent Conference Proceedings

White, D. E., & Bartley, J. (2013). Sleep Apnea: A model of airway drying during n-PAP therapy. In S. McGlashan, D. Musson, J. Ferdandez, & A. Thambyah (Eds.), 5th Annual Mechanobiology Symposium. Auckland, New Zealand.
White, D., Al-Jumaily, A. M., Bartley, J., Lu, J., & Hankin, R. K. S. (2011). Nasal Morphology and Blood Flow During Augmented Air Pressure Breathing Therapies. In Medical Science Congress. Queenstown, New Zealand.
Al-Jumaily, A., White, D., Bartley, J., & Lu, J. (2011). Effects of augmented air pressure on the nasal erectile tissue and blood flow during breathing therapies. In Proceedings of the ASME 2011 International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition, IMECE2011, Vol. track number IMECE2011-63132. Denver, USA.
Robotham, A. J., Nates, R. J., Raine, J., & White, D. (2013). Reflections on the Challenge of Developing Professional Engineering Designers and Engineering Design Technologists – A New Zealand Perspective. In U. Lindemann, S. Venkataraman, Y. S. Kim, & S. W. Lee (Eds.), International Conference on Engineering Design 2013. Seoul, Korea.
White, D. E., Al-Jumaily, A. M., Bartley, J., & Lu, J. (2011). Effects of augmented air pressure on the nasal erectile tissue and blood flow during breathing therapies.. In International Mechanical Engineering Conference and Exposition (IMECE) 2011. Denver, Colorado, USA.
White, D. E., Al-Jumaily, A. M., Bartley, J., Lu, J., & Hankin, R. K. S. (2011). Nasal morphology and blood flow during augmented air pressure breathing therapies. In Medical Sciences Congress 2011. Queenstown, New Zealand.

Books and Chapters

White, D. E., & Bunn, R. (2013). Motorcycle Blow-by: A Shower of Sparks - Abridged Version (1st ed.). Kindle Book: A. R. Bunn; Abridged Version edition (14 Nov 2013).
Youha D, Al Jumaily A, White D. Occlusion Identification and Relief Within Branched Structures. In Biomedical Applications of Vibration and Occiustics in Therapy - Bioeffects and Modeling. 173-213. ASME Press, New York 2008.


White, D. E., Makinson, I. D., & Bartley, J. R. F. (2014). 617543, A Patient Interface and Method of Treating Sleep Apnoea. New Zealand: Intellectual Property Office.
Bunn AR, White DE., Bunn Counter-Revolutionary Racing Breather. Application number: Innovation Patent Application 2007100399. Granted/Publication date: 2007.
McCoid T, White D., Steering and Drive Control System. Patent number: 20080136134 (United States). Granted/Publication date: 2007.


David White has been conducting biomedical research in the area of respiratory devices since 2001 when he utilised dynamic modelling techniques to identify important design features that were subsequently applied in a small-bore tube continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) device.

With a strong industry and academic background in mechanical design, David has focussed on applied research that provides advances in breathing therapeutic devices or therapies.  Since completing his Masters of Engineering titled Breathing Therapy Air Delivery Unit: Simulation, Design and Development in 2003, David has gone on to design and supervise the building of many biomedical devices and research systems.  These include a lung simulator, pressure limiting flow regulator, simulator of premature neonate lung surfactant dynamics, airway tracheal tissue test apparatus and novel patient breathing interface systems.

For a period of three years, David acted in the role of Deputy Director and Manager of a Biomedical Research Institute and was a representative on the management and advisory boards.  During this time David was responsible for equipment purchases, staff appointments, grant applications and strategic planning.

With an emphasis on the human upper airway, and in particular the nose, David has recently been investigating the role augmented air pressure has airway physiology.  His 2013 PhD thesis, tiled Nasal Drying During Pressurised Breathing, explained the cause of poor adherence to CPAP therapy through the use of computational and physiological modelling.  New forms of breathing therapy and devices are now being developed as a result of this on-going work.

David is currently the Director of the Design for Respiratory Health Lab.