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PhD Studentship - High-Fidelity Experimental Fluid Mechanics for Future Flight and Sustainable Environment

University of Southampton

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Southampton
Funding for: UK Students
Funding amount: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £15,609 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 16th June 2021
Closes: 31st August 2021

Supervisory Team:    Bharathram Ganapathisubramani

Project description

There are multiple PhD projects to work on development and application of high-fidelity experimental methods to study the fluid mechanics of problems relevant to future flight and sustainable environment. Some possible topics include:

  • 1) Turbulent boundary layer flows over porous and rough surfaces
  • 2) Hydrodynamics of mutually interacting flapping wings/foils
  • 3) Turbulent shear flows past cavities, gaps and obstacles

These fundamental topics have applications in varied areas in engineering and environment. For example, the first topic is relevant to drag of aircraft wings as well as urban planning/pollution. The second one is pertinent to renewable energy generation or understanding fish swimming/schooling. Finally, the third topic is critical to jet engines and to model flow over forests/canopies.

In all of these topics, you will:

  • design new experiments that can be carried out in state-of-the-art facilities (brand-new wind tunnel, water flume and/or an aeroacoustic wind tunnel)
  • obtain high-fidelity experimental data using advanced flow diagnostic methods such as 3D Particle Image Velocimetry and Particle Tracking Methods.
  • use advanced analysis techniques (Decomposition methods, Machine Learning, Data Assimilation etc) to better understand the flow mechanisms and develop predictive capabilities

 All of the projects are open-ended, and the details will be tailored to suit your interests and skills. You will have a unique opportunity to work alongside other team members (PhD students and postdoctoral researchers) with diverse background and experience. You will be trained in using state-of-the-art diagnostics and advanced data-analysis methods that will enable you to pursue a career in academia or industry. Further information on the type of projects carried out in our lab as well information on current lab members can be found in our website (

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Bharathram Ganapthisubramani, Aerodyanmics and Flight Mechanics Research Group, Email:, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 2305.

Entry Requirements

a Bachelors/Masters degree in Engineering with interest (and some experience) in carrying out experimental work. A strong mathematical and computing (MATLAB, PYTHON etc.) foundation is crucial for development of data analysis codes and subsequent model synthesis.

Closing date: applications should be received no later than 31 August 2021 for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place.

Funding: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £15,609 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years.

How To Apply

Applications should be made online. Select programme type (Research), 2021/22, Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, next page select “PhD Engineering & Environment (Full time)”. In Section 2 of the application form you should insert the name of the supervisor Bharathram Ganapathisubramani

Applications should include:

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts to date

Apply online:

For further information please contact:

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