Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is an interdisciplinary branch of science which has a broad spectrum of applications. Fluid flows are present almost in every aspect of our life and are of paramount importance across a number of areas - aviation, space, automotive, chemical and process industries, atmospheric sciences, energy, medicine, and micro and nanotechnology.

There has been considerable growth in the development and application of computational modelling of fluid flows, transforming CFD as a standard modelling tool widely utilised within the industrial environment. A recent survey projected that the global market for CFD is projected to grow at 16.5% per year due to increasing computational power and integration of CFD into the design process.

Our CFD experts are currently applying their knowledge to areas including:

  • Thermal Management – how to increase efficiency and reliability or reduce cost through a better understanding of heat dissipation.

  • Morphing Wings – how aircraft wings can adapt during flight so that less energy is consumed, flow separation decreases and the lift to drag ratio increases.

  • Turbulent Mixing – reducing the uncertainty of scenarios when the energy in turbulent flows accelerates homogenisation. 

  • Carbon Capture – experimental carbon capture through novel nanomaterials.

  • Aerodynamic Optimisation – including multi-disciplinary design optimisation of structures and materials.

  • Vortex Formation – for example to look at lifting force and aerodynamic drag.

  • Microfluidic Sensors – development of sensors which are able to measure fluid concentration levels such as for detection of bio-hazards.

  • Predicting Explosive Blast Loading – predicting the forces exerted on a building by the blast wave from a terrorist bomb to help improve the survival of the building and its occupants.

About our research

Our greatest strength is the ability to combine the academic rigour and long-term perspective of a university with the commercial and business focus of industry.

Our excellence in strategic and applied research has enabled us to make significant contributions to the world around us for over 60 years. We address real life challenges and focus on research that is of strategic and practical importance.

We provide a supportive research community for students and our academic work is regularly published in journal article, book or thesis form.

Working with us

We specialise in both fundamental and applied research using theory, advanced modelling and simulation in conjunction with large-scale parallel computing. We are able to undertake computational studies which can provide analysis and intelligence for decision making quicker than developing costly prototypes and with greater accuracy.

We can work with businesses on feasibility and optimisation studies by developing advanced numerical methods and algorithms for different flows including compressible and incompressible. Our expertise is broad and is capable of providing more sophisticated intelligence than traditional commercial software packages. The range of techniques we can apply include:

• Large Eddy simulations
• High-order and high-resolution schemes
• Direct numerical simulations
• Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes
• Structure and Unstructured solvers
• Detached Eddy simulations.