Revolutionary turbines for clean propulsion

Interdisciplinary Areas: Data and Engineering Applications, Defense related projects (for US citizens only), Power, Energy, and the Environment

Project Description

This project aims to develop radical new turbine concepts for clean propulsion while addressing a fundamental problem of fluid mechanics: Flow separation, ubiquitous in all internal flow aerodynamics. Turbine designs are usually optimized using Computational Fluid Dynamics. Alas, commercial flow solvers employed by the industry have a limited validity when dealing with massively detached flows. Therefore, the produced geometries may not be the true optimal.

On the other hand, performing detailed experimental measurements in such small turbines is a challenging task that requires thousands of sensors with minimal size, high-frequency response, and minimal flow distortion. In order to achieve an accurate estimation of all the performance figures of merit of a novel turbine, it is necessary to accompany the experimental results with a detailed computational analysis of all the experimental sensors and quantify their distortion in the flow field.

In this project, we will advance a suite of synergistic numerical and experimental capabilities. Numerical tools will be assessed in the Purdue Experimental Turbine Aerothermal Laboratory while developing a framework to assess the uncertainty in the fused experimental and computational data.

Start Date


Postdoctoral Qualifications

Demonstrated experience in internal aerodynamics with computational or experimental tools. Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work with international graduate research assistants. Project management experience preferred.


Prof. Guillermo Paniagua (Mechanical Engineering)
Prof. Tom Shih (Aeronautics and Astronautics)
Prof. Guang Lin (Mathematics)

External Collaborators

Dr. Matthew Bloxham (Rolls-Royce)
Prof. Eusebio Valero (UP Madrid)


Rahbari I., Paniagua G., 2020, “Acoustic streaming in turbulent compressible channel flow for heat transfer enhancement”. Journal of Fluid Mechanics. February. Vol. 889, A2, (22 pages).

Andreoli V., Braun J., Paniagua G., De Maesschalck C., Bloxham M., Cummings W., Lang-ford L., 2019, “Aerothermal optimization of fully cooled turbine blade tips”. Journal of Turbomachinery. Vol. 141. Issue 6, pp 061007 1-10. June.

Paniagua G., Iorio M.C., Da Costa Vinha N., Sousa J., 2014, “Design and analysis of pioneering high supersonic axial turbines”. International Journal of Mechanical Sciences. Vol. 89, pp 65-77. September.

Pau M., Paniagua G., Delhaye D., de la Loma A., Ginibre P., 2010, “Aerothermal impact of stator-rim purge flow and rotor-platform film cooling on a transonic turbine stage”. Journal of Turbomachinery. Vol. 132, No. 2, 021006, pp 1-12. April.

Paniagua G., Yasa T., de la Loma A., Castillon L., Coton T., 2008, “Unsteady strong shocks interactions in a transonic turbine: Experimental and numerical analysis”. Journal of Propulsion and Power. Vol. 24, No. 4, pp 722-731. July - August.