Projects: 2018

Please note that the PhD projects listed are examples of projects offered to current CDT students and as such are not generally available to prospective students.

The conditions under which a flow remains laminar or transitions to a turbulent state is of both fundamental scientific and practical importance. Whilst some flow instabilities arise from the base state becoming linearly unstable, the transition to turbulence in channel flow arises from a subcritical instability in which the base state remains linearly stable, but…
The Maritime Continent in Southeast Asia is a key region in the global weather and climate system for both weather and flooding. Its complex island geography and position among the warmest oceans on Earth lead to a multi-scale concoction of severe atmospheric convective and dynamical weather systems (Figure 1). Figure 1: Typical landscape of Java,…
The turbulent behaviour of clouds is responsible for many of the uncertainties around the timing and intensity of precipitation in weather and climate models. One of the fundamental problems here is that cloud and precipitation processes are essentially Lagrangian: they happen along trajectories of the flow (for small particles) or fall trajectories We have recently…
Water-wave modeling and prediction is very important for maritime engineering, in which accurate and robust extreme wave prediction is required in target areas and for specific time intervals in order to test wave impact on maritime structures. Extreme or rogue waves are waves with rare occurrences that are at least twice as high as the…
The design of hydraulic infrastructure such as reservoir spillways, weirs and other critical structures is an area of significant importance from a safety and cost perspective. There is a large and costly programme of work to upgrade existing infrastructure to ensure resilience in the face of changing climate and increase in extreme weather events. Physical…
Future advanced aircraft face an appreciable technical challenge to design thermal management systems of adequate capacity within the available space. Various heat exchangers (HE) constitute key components within aircraft thermal management systems, the achieved heat transfer performance for a given size, and flexibility of physical shaping, can have a strong determining effect on overall system…
In spite of increasing vehicle electrification, most road vehicles will continue to have an internal combustion engine (ICE), albeit as part of a hybrid powertrain. There will be increasing focus on reducing the carbon intensity of fuels for ICEs and advanced biofuels are likely to be extremely important, as envisaged in the recent Shell Sky…
Earth’s solid inner core grows as the planet cools. The material in the overlying fluid outer core comprises liquid iron and lighter components, and as the iron crystallizes on the inner core, light material is released and floats upwards stirring the outer core. This convective stirring powers the geodynamo, the source of the Earth’s magnetic…
More than one in ten of the world’s population live within 100 km of an active volcano, and are exposed to threats to life, livelihood and infrastructure from eruptions. Understanding the mechanisms by which magma flows through the Earth’s crust is of fundamental importance to volcanology, and to forecasting volcanic activity. This project will compare…
Branch pulmonary artery stenting for vessel stenosis is a common catheter procedure in congenital heart disease. While enlargement of the vessel is seen in most patients, only 75-85% of patients show a clinical improvement, suggesting not all patients benefit equally. The intervention aims to increase blood flow to the affected lung and to improve right…
Organic carbon and pollutant concentrations in the modern ocean are poorly constrained. In particular, ocean floor channels on slopes, which are the main conduits for particulate transfer from continents to oceans, are not considered as important sinks for particulates. In part, this is because modern erosionally-confined systems form complicated geomorphologies, but their erosional nature and…
The growth, retention and release of trapped gas within soft sediments is critically important in many natural and engineered systems; from methane formation within the muddy beds of aquatic reservoirs and waste water sludges to safety concerns from hydrogen gas release in corroded legacy nuclear wastes. This project will seek to significantly enhance our knowledge…
Understanding and forecasting airflow in enclosed/indoor environments is of great interest due to its close relationship to occupant’s safety, thermal comfort, and energy efficiency. Optimally placed air conditioning could increase the comfort of inhabitants. In hospitals, airflow can distribute germs and can pose a significant health hazard. Indoor airflow patterns can be very complex, and…
Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is a well-established tool used in many engineering areas and has become the primary method for design and analysis. CFD has extensively been used in bioengineering to study physiological flows and is demonstrating huge potential. There is increasing interest in applying CFD-based techniques in medicine to model cardiovascular system in health…
The movement of Earth’s liquid core is responsible for generating our planetary magnetic field, yet we know very little about its structure and dynamics because direct observation is not possible. Recent high-resolution satellite data have enabled the identification of a jet-stream at high-latitude within the core. This jet may play an important role in the…
Our ability to confidently predict the safety of a nuclear waste repository depends on our ability to correctly model the interaction of fluids residing in the host rock surrounding the repository and the potential for fluid flow to bring radionuclei from the repository to the biosphere. At the same time, a very similar problem occurs…
The importance and relevance of fluid mixing in modern science is clear, both from the range of industrial and environmental situations in which it appears, and from the explosion of research articles connected with mixing by chaotic advection that have appeared in the last thirty years. For fluid mixing devices that operate by chaotic advection…
The project is to model fluid interaction and thermal transport. The aim is to use computational models to design and validate experimental facilities at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy. The student’s activities will contribute to the build and ultimate operation of the Fusion Technology Facilities (FTF) at UKAEA, primarily by assisting in the construction of…
The decarbonisation of heat will be a critical part of the UK’s plans to meet the 80% CO2 reduction targets set out in the UK Climate Change Act. Current proposals include the use of electric based air and ground based heat pumps as well as the use of hydrogen in domestic boilers, fires and cookers….
Computational Fluid Dynamics has been used extensively in medicine to model the flow of blood in large arteries and veins and in the heart, but our understanding of the spatial propagation of body fluids on the microscopic level is more limited. The purpose of this PhD project is to enable the study of these processes…
The issues surrounding the discard and transport of plastic waste into our oceans has become a critical research theme in recent years, as the dire consequences are becoming clearer. Much of the transport of this plastic to the oceans is through our river systems. However, many of the fundamental physical processes governing the fluvial transport…
Convection in rocky or icy planetary mantles controls the evolution of the terrestrial planets and many of the moons in the solar system. This convection is intimately linked to planetary habitability: it determines whether surface material participates in the global-scale dynamics (as on Earth) or remains isolated (as on Venus) and also determines the viability…
The present project aims to explore the different deflagration and detonation regimes of improved fuels and obtain an underlying mechanism of the deflagration and detonation transition. The experimental measurement on deflagration and detonation boundary will be conducted on a RCM with optical access; the direct numerical simulation will performed using in-hours MHD code with AMR…
The present project aims to aims to investigate the combustion characteristics for H2/LPG under elevated pressures and temperatures. Experiments will utilise a state-of-the-art Rapid Compression Machine (RCM) to obtain measurements of autoignition time, and LUPOE 2D engine for burning velocity, knocks and cyclic variability of hydrogen-LPG combustion. In addition, the chemical kinetics study based on…