PhD Studentship: Scale-Resolving Simulations of Separated Flows at High Reynolds Numbers

Imperial College London - Department of Aeronautics

PhD Studentship in Computational Fluid Dynamics

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship in Computational Fluid Dynamics within the Department of Aeronautics, Imperial College London in collaboration with SIEMENS PLM Software.

One of the limiting factors in current industrial CFD simulation is the way large-scale structures, that might not be turbulent, are represented by methods based on statistical models. The most accurate method available today for industrial applications (Large-Eddy simulation, LES) still remains largely unpractical (in terms of cost, but also in terms of physics that need to be modeled). A method combining both approaches has been developed in STAR-CCM+ (a leading CFD software, developed by Siemens PLM). The aim of the project is to improve this methodology (originally derived and validated on simple, canonical, low Reynolds number cases) for high Reynolds number flows and for complex configurations. This will require some fundamental analysis of high-Re and high-speed flows data, either already available, or performed during this project. While Reynolds number dependency has already been the subject of extensive research for attached boundary layers, it has not yet been conducted in a formal way for separated flows, and more specifically for bluff bodies in tandem (where the wake of the upstream body affects the full flow of the downstream one), a configuration found in many practical applications, ranging from landing-gear (noise generation) to wind-turbine (farms, related to energy), and even to racing cars (F1).

Imperial College is consistently ranked as one of top universities in the world and top 3 universities within the UK. In 2016/17 Imperial ranked 9th in the world in the QS and 8th in the world in the THE rankings. It has been ranked as the most innovative university in Europe. Imperial staff and alumni include 15 Nobel laureates, 2 Fields Medalists, 70 Fellows of the Royal Society, 82 Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering and 78 Fellows of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

Applicants should have a keen interest and solid background in Computational Fluid Dynamics, Programming and in High Performance Computing. Knowledge of C and C++ is preferable. Experience with STAR-CCM+ would be a great asset.

Applications are invited from candidates with (or who expect to gain) a first-class honours degree or an equivalent degree in Engineering, Mathematics or a related discipline (for more details, see

Funding is available for UK citizens and EU citizens who have resided in the UK for the past three years. The studentship is for 3.5 years and will provide full coverage of tuition fees and an annual tax-free stipend of approximately £16,553.

Informal enquiries and requests for additional information for this position can be made to:

Dr Sylvain Laizet via email:

Any queries regarding the application process should be directed to Ms Lisa Kelly by email at

Closing date for applications: Open until 13th April 2018

Start Date: 01 October 2018

Committed to equality and valuing diversity. We are also an Athena Bronze SWAN Award winner, a Stonewall Diversity Champion and a Two Ticks Employer.

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