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Data-driven modelling of laminar-turbulent transition in wall-bounded flows

   Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences

  ,  Friday, July 22, 2022  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Transition from a laminar to a turbulent state in a fluid flow is a widely observed phenomenon occurring in a large variety of natural and engineering applications. Understanding under which conditions laminar-turbulence transition takes place, as well as the dominant mechanisms at play, is crucial for the development of reliable models, and for the implementation of effective control strategies [1]. The aim of this project is to provide a data-driven characterization of laminar-turbulence transition in wall-bounded flows, combining fluid dynamics, data analysis, and network theory within a multidisciplinary framework. The project will be mainly numerically/theoretically oriented, but experimental work exploiting one of EPSRC’s National Wind Tunnel Facilities could be included.

Supervisors: Dr Giovanni Iacobello, Dr Marco Placidi

This project is open to UK and international students starting in October 2022.

Entry requirements

We are seeking highly motivated candidates with degrees in a relevant engineering field (e.g., aeronautics, environmental, civil, mechanical), as well as physical sciences or applied mathematics, with excellent communications skills, and a strong inclination towards multidisciplinary research. UK and international students holding a first-class degree (or a good 2:1) in the aforementioned disciplines and a background in fluid mechanics are encouraged to apply. Previous experience with Matlab (or Python) computing is essential for the data analysis and code development; some exposure to experimental work would be beneficial.

English language requirements: IELTS minimum 6.5 overall with 6.0 in Writing, or equivalent. More about our English language requirements.

How to apply

Applications should be submitted via the Aerodynamic and Environmental Flow PhD programme page on the "Apply" tab.

In place of a research proposal you should upload a document stating the title of the project that you wish to apply for and the name of the relevant supervisor.

Funding Notes

A stipend of £16,062 for 2022/23, which will increase each year in line with the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) rate, in addition to £1,000 per annum to be spent on research and training. Home rate fee allowance of £4,500 (with automatic increase to UKRI rate each year). For exceptional international candidates, there is the possibility of obtaining a scholarship to cover overseas fees. Funding is for 3.5 years. Funded by the School of Mechanical Engineering Sciences.


[1] Tuckerman, Chantry, and Barkley, (2020) Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics, 52, 343-367.

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