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Research Associate in Experimental Fluid Dynamics

Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK


  • Posted on: 04th Feb 2021
  • Salary: £30,942 - £44,045 per annum
  • REF: 5749
  • Closes: 04th March 2021
  • Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
  • Hours: Full Time

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.

Salary: £30,942 – £44,045 per annum

Closing Date: 4 March 2021

The Role

The Fluid Dynamics and Thermal Systems research group are looking for a Research Associate in Experimental Fluid Dynamics for up to 3 years. If successful, you will have access to cutting-edge expertise and state-of-the-art research facilities.

You will work on a project which aims to develop, implement and exploit machine intelligence paradigms to enable new approaches to control wall-turbulence. This new form of intelligent fluid-flow control will be used to develop practical wall-turbulence control strategies that can rapidly and autonomously optimise aerodynamic surfaces with minimal power input whilst being adaptive to changes in flow speed.

You will work as part of a larger team across Newcastle University and Imperial College London on a £1.4M EPSRC grant which is supported by AIRBUS, the Aerospace Technology Institute and the Department for Transport.

Informal enquiries can be directed to Dr Richard Whalley at Richard.Whalley@newcastle.ac.uk

For more info on our research group:https://www.ncl.ac.uk/engineering/research/mechanical/mfts/#about
For more information on the School of Engineering: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/engineering/

Key Accountabilities

  • Develop, implement and exploit machine intelligence paradigms to enable new approaches to wall-turbulence control using advanced wind tunnel investigations.
  • Conduct advanced wind tunnel experiments using diagnostic techniques including hot-wire anemometry, laser Doppler velocimetry (LDV) and stereoscopic particle image velocimetry (PIV).
  • Write progress reports and prepare results for publication and dissemination via presentations, scientific papers, outreach activities and public/industrial engagement.

The Person

Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Practical experience in conducting wind tunnel experiments
  • Excellent knowledge of wall-turbulence and flow control techniques
  • Practical experience in hot-wire anemometry, laser Doppler velocimetry (LDV) and stereoscopic particle image velocimetry (PIV)
  • Practical experience in analysing large data sets including the use of Matlab or equivalent
  • Practical experience in control and instrumentation including LabView programming
  • Practical experience in the design, manufacture and testing of engineering components
  • Strong background in Mathematics
  • Strong background in engineering design
  • Ability to conduct a detailed review of recent literature
  • Creative approach to problem-solving
  • Excellent written communication skills and the ability to write clearly and succinctly for publication


  • Practical experience in machine learning, Bayesian statistical methodology, computer programming, algorithm development and implementation
  • Knowledge of optimisation techniques

Attributes and Behaviour

  • Excellent verbal communication skills and the ability to deal with a wide range of people
  • Ability to organise own work with minimal supervision
  • Ability to prioritise own work in response to deadlines
  • Ability to direct the work of a small research team and motivate others to produce a high standard of work
  • Willingness to work as part of a team and to be open-minded and cooperative
  • Flexible attitude towards work
  • Discipline and regard for confidentiality and security at all times
  • Willingness to undertake any necessary training for the role
  • Willingness to travel both within the United Kingdom and abroad to conduct research and attend conferences
  • Willingness to work out of normal working hours (including weekends) if the requirements of the project demand


  • Hold a PhD (or equivalent) in experimental fluid dynamics, or equivalent research, industrial or commercial experience
  • First class honours degree in engineering, applied physics or applied mathematics

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff from all sectors of society. We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.

Requisition ID: 5749

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