Fluid Mechanics and Thermal Processes

Research in the thermo-fluids area covers a broad range of fundamental and applied topics. A strong focus is on turbulence and its diverse aspects, investigated by theoretical, computational and experimental methods. Stability, transition, mixing, the dynamics of small-scale  structures and LES modelling are major aspect of the theoretical and computational work.

The data-intensive character of this research is actively supported by the University. Turbulent flows in the environment, such as boundary layers in the coastal ocean and in the atmosphere, in turbomachinery, wind farms and others are studied over a broad range of scales. A strong emphasis on optical methods puts the department at the forefront of research in three-dimensional unsteady complex flows such as those occurring in centrifugal pumps and cavitation. Several heat transfer processes, such as boiling and electronic cooling, are also studied by optical methods.

A recent area of activity in which these methods have proven very useful is the fluid mechanics of oceanic oil spills and their effects on oceanic life and their impact on atmospheric pollution. Computation is pursued to investigate biological flows, such as insect flight, voice production and blood flow, physiological acoustics, multiphase flows with suspended bubbles, drops and particles, transitional shear flows and the direct numerical simulation of turbulent and non-Newtonian flows. These activities strongly rely on immersed-boundary and other advanced numerical methods and avail themselves of recent hardware tools such as GPU-based computers.


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