Modeling the volume of oil spilled underwater in the Gulf of Mexico


Fluid Mechanics   

Fluid Mechanics affects everything from hydraulic pumps, to microorganisms, to jet engines.  Purdue brings together a world-class group of researchers to model these behaviors in the computer, and then apply them to real-world situations.

Whether it’s air flowing over the blades of a turbine, or liquids coating a batch of pharmaceutical tablets, Purdue boasts one-of-a-kind facilities that enable researchers to explore new theories and set new standards.  Even at the microscopic or nanoscopic level -- even within the human body! -- Purdue researchers have the expertise to forge new discoveries every day.

Swimming dynamics of microorganisms in a viscoeleastic fluid



Working with the fluid compressor


Zucrow Labs boasts 24 acres of propulsion research, including dedicated test cells for compressors and jet engines.


Particulate Science

Studying fluid particulates


Fluid tumbler modelCenter for Particulate Processes and Products is a one-of-a-kind lab, studying the flow of powders and particles. It even contains a full-scale pharmaceutical manufacturing plant.



Two workers at Maha Fluid Power Research Center


Maha Fluid Power Research Center enables researchers to model the behavior of hydraulic pumps and motors, and then gives them 15,000 square feet to test on real-world power equipment.


Faculty in Fluid Mechanics & Propulsion

  • Fluid dynamics
  • Biofluid dynamics
  • Multiphase flows
  • Non-Newtonian fluid dynamics
  • Microfluidics
  • Complex fluids
  • Renewable energy
  • Turbulence
  • Bioengineering
  • Experimental fluid dynamics
  • Development of flow diagnostic techniques
  • Flow dynamics in stratified environment
  • Turbulent flow measurements and modeling
  • Indoor and outdoor airflow modeling by computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and measurements
  • Building ventilation systems
  • Indoor air quality (IAQ)
  • Energy analysis
  • Fluid mechanics
  • Nonlinear dynamics and chaos
  • Granular flow
  • Complex fluids, including particulate and multiphase flows
  • Microfluidics, including fluid--structure interactions
  • Wave phenomena in continuum mechanics
  • Applied mathematics and scientific computing
  • CFD of multiphase flows
  • Turbulent gas-liquid flows
  • Cavitation
  • Heat transfer
  • Laser-absorption spectroscopy, laser-induced fluorescence, & IR imaging sensors for gas temperature, pressure, velocity, and chemical species
  • Molecular spectroscopy, photophysics, & energy transfer in gases
  • Energetic materials (e.g., explosives & propellants) detection & combustion
  • Combustion and propulsion systems (small and large scale)
  • Biomedical sensing
  • Modeling and simulation techniques for multiphase and multiphysics problems using the phase-field method.
  • Isogeometric methods with applications in fluid and solid mechanics.
  • Modeling and simulation tools for several biomechanics problems, including tumor growth, cellular migration and blood flow at small scales.
  • Computational methods for fluid-structure interaction, especially when the problem involves complex fluids.
  • Aerothermal aspects of turbomachinery
  • Axial and radial compressor performance
  • Experimental methods in fluid mechanics
  • Big data analysis and statistical machine learning
  • Predictive modeling and uncertainty quantification
  • Scientific computing and computational fluid dynamics
  • Stochastic multiscale modeling
  • Laser diagnostics
  • Diode-laser-based sensors
  • Gas turbine and internal engine combustion
  • Materials processing and synthesis
  • Combustion science
  • Fluid mechanics and heat transfer
  • Laser spectroscopy and imaging for combustion, sprays, energetics, hypersonics, plasmas, and non-equilibrium flows
  • Applications to gas-turbine, rocket, internal combustion, and scramjet engine performance, efficiency, and emissions
  • Thermal-fluid behavior at the extremes, including turbulent, high-temperature, high-pressure, multiphase, and non-equilibrium reacting flows
  • Fluid dynamics
  • Multiphase flows
  • Monte Carlo methods
  • Kinetic theory of granular flows
  • Heat transfer in granular media
  • Rarefied gas dynamics
  • Compact high speed turbomachinery: Design, analysis (experimental-numerical), cavity and tip flows, flow control
  • High speed propulsion: Novel cycle development, intakes, boundary layer transition, combustion
  • Development of measurement techniques and data processing
  • Large eddy and direct simulations
  • Turbulent Combustion
  • Thermoacoustics
  • Non-linear acoustics
  • Heat-and-mass transfer
  • Physical oceanography and limnology
  • Numerical methods for complex geometries
  • Multiphase combustion, particularly related to propellants, explosives, and pyrotechnics
  • Nanoscale composite energetic materials
  • Advanced energetic materials
  • Microscale combustion
  • Modeling and simulation of hydraulic systems
  • Modeling and testing of pumps and motors for fluid power applications
  • Hydraulic valves modeling and testing
  • Reduction of noise emissions in fluid power systems
  • Measurement science and instrumentation
  • Particle image velocimetry
  • Quantification of uncertainty
  • Multi-phase flows
  • Flow induced vibrations and hydro-kinetic energy
  • Biological flows
  • Biofluid mechanics
  • Biomedical cardiovascular devices
  • Heart failure and diastolic dysfunction
  • Discrete element method (DEM) modeling for particulate systems
  • -- model development, e.g., fibrous particles, particle breakage, particle shapes
  • -- application to manufacturing, e.g., storage and flow, blending, segregation, drying, coating, wet granulation
  • Finite element method (FEM) modeling of powder compaction
  • -- e.g., roll compaction, tableting, picking and sticking
  • Multi-scale modeling (FEM combined with DEM) of powder dynamics
  • -- model development and application to hopper flow, blending, and segregation
  • Microfluidic MEMS devices
  • Development of new microfluidic diagnostic techniques
  • Biological flows at the cellular level
  • Micro-scale laminar mixing
  • Flow transitions and instabilities

Research Areas