Thermofluids

Improving wind turbine blade efficiencyThe group conducts research in energy, aerodynamics and fundamental fluid mechanics.

In the area of aerodynamics, the group's research focuses on efficient aerodynamic design to reduce aircraft fuel consumption, improving wind turbine blade efficiency, shock control, drag reduction and development of advanced modelling and meshing methodology and tools. Recent research topics include active flow control, laminar flow wings, blended wing body aircraft, low Reynolds number micro air vehicles, and adaptive and Hex meshing techniques.

The group's energy research focuses on low carbon technologies (alternative low carbon fuels, carbon capture and CO2 storage in saline aquifers), efficient combustion (flame instability and ignition, noise deduction and novel imaging techniques), water pipelines technologies (leak detection, flow metering and smart fluids) and renewable energy technologies.

A developing theme within the group is nuclear engineering, focusing on thermal hydraulics, with researchers working closely with the nuclear industry to ensure improved safety and efficiency within the currently deployed reactors, as well as in new generation reactor concepts.

Fundamental fluid mechanics research covers flow instability and transition, fractals, unsteady turbulence, drag reduction and multi-scale/multi-phase flows. The group develops and uses advanced computational approaches, including DNS, LES, DES, RANS and LBM, which are backed up with measurements using advanced technologies PIV, LDA, hot-film/wire in wind tunnels and water loop facilities.


Facilities


Major facilities include two low speed wind tunnels, a fluids lab dedicated to the study of turbulence and several high performance computing clusters for parallel computing. These facilities provide the group with the equipment for both experimental research and computational analysis. The Low Carbon Combustion Centre is also home to extensive test facilities for research into combustion and alternative fuels.

Our experts


Prof Shuisheng He
Prof Ning Qin
Prof Yang Zhang
Dr Franck Nicolleau
Dr Andrew Nowakowski
Dr Rob Howell
Dr Pierre Ricco