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NGCM-21: Computational modelling of underwater noise generation by turbulent fluid-structure interactions

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  • Full or part time
    Prof S.R. Turnock
    Prof V. Humphrey
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round

Project Description

This project aims to apply improved computation fluid dynamic modelling techniques to study the generation of underwater noise by marine propulsors and tidal turbines where fluid turbulence, fluid structure interactions and structural vibrations, as a result of pressure fluctuations, may all contribute to noise generation. This area is currently of importance because increasing attention is being paid to the underwater noise made by human activity, and the impact it may have on the marine environment. This has been recognised by an EU Directive which effectively classifies underwater noise as a pollutant. Consequently there is an urgent need to be able to predict the noise made by a variety of systems through numerical modelling, and understand how it may be reduced.

Computation of underwater noise relies on an ability to determine the possible strength and type of sound sources resulting either from fluid dynamic mechanisms or indirectly through flow induced structural vibration. This project will develop enhanced computational techniques to evaluate unsteady fluid flow behaviour and how it induces coupled vibrational behaviour. Applications to ship propellers and tidal turbines provide challenging industrial applications that require an ability to capture fluid dynamic phenomena including cavitation and unsteady transition/separation. The computational cost of resolving the necessarily small timesteps alongside time domain structural response will make full use of our excellent large scale computing resources and expertise.

The project will investigate:
• Computational techniques for dealing with large scale rapid deformations of structure;
• Flow feature driven adaptive meshing using opensource software;
• Methods of classifying noise sources and developing more rapid models based on high cost time accurate large eddy simulations.

The project will involve a mixture of computational fluid/structural modelling and acoustic modelling. A large towing tank is currently being constructed at the University of Southampton and results from this facility will be used for validation.

Full funding is available to successful UK/EU students.

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Professor Stephen Turnock, Fluid Structures Interactions research group, Email: [email protected], Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 2488.

This project is run through participation in the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Next Generation Computational Modelling (http://ngcm.soton.ac.uk). For details of our 4 Year PhD programme, please see

To apply for this project please visit http://www.ngcm.soton.ac.uk/apply.html

Visit our Postgraduate Research Opportunities Afternoon to find out more about Postgraduate Research study within the Faculty of Engineering and the Environment: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/engineering/news/events/2016/02/03-discover-your-future.page

How good is research at University of Southampton in General Engineering?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 192.23

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