Thomas grew up in Oswego, New York. He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the Rochester Institute of Technology. To date, his focus has been on experimental and computational fluid mechanics in aerospace and biomedical applications. He has held engineering positions at the Air Force Research Lab and the RIT Biodevice Prototyping Lab. For his Master's research, he experimentally investigated the effects of turbulent shear stresses on red blood cell damage.
T. W. R. Fountain, P. V. Kailat, and J. J. Abbott, "Wireless Control of Magnetic Helical Microrobots using a Rotating-Permanent-Magnet Manipulator," IEEE Int. Conf. Robotics and Automation, pp. 576-581, 2010. Finalist, Best Medical Robotics Paper Award.