The Academic staff in the School is involved in a diverse range of research. This is outlined below according to each staff member.
Students interested in applying are to directly contact the responsible person to discuss the current research available.
Low speed applied aerodynamics and the detailed design of light sport aircraft.
Interdisciplinary research: manufacturing, cold gas dynamic spraying, materials science including composite materials, information and information systems including software engineering, CAD/CAM/CIM, physics, human body, environment, complex engineering and natural systems; manufacturing and production improvement and defect reduction; new process design and re-engineering, industrial competitiveness and production.
Optimisation, linear programming, dynamic programming, simulation and related techniques applied in fields such as energy planning solar vehicle optimization, stock market date analysis, derivative market analysis, railway scheduling, airline scheduling, recycling logistics and product supply logistics
Deformation and fracture in metals and composites; rheological properties of dense minerals slurries.
Alternative fuels for internal combustion engines; combustion analysis with particular reference to energy release and heat transfer in internal combustion engines; analysis of emissions and particulate measurement; high pressure fuel injection spray analysis using conventional and alternative fuels.
Aerodyamics, Flight Mechanics, Aeroelasticity, Aeroacoustics. Flow control; high-lift systems; UAV; missiles; shock reduction; space re-entry; new configurations (Ekronoplane, flying wings, high aspect-ratio etc)
Manufacturing Strategy (MS) content, process and context in competitive environments. Linkages with business ecosystems, management and leadership, drivers and constraints of competitiveness, business strategy, performance and metrics, technology and innovation, supply chain, industrial policy, internationalisation and globalisation. Application to Services and other sectors. Strategy formulation and implementation complexities. Modeling firms strategically. Within and between firms, investigating approaches from other disciplines, Economic, cognitive and environmental linkages.
Experience in mechanics and dynamics of machines, mechanical vibrations, mechanical engineering design, fluid mechanics of hydro-powered equipment, discrete element modelling, mechanical engineering of mining machinery, bulk solids handling
Supply chains and logistics; inventory management and forecasting. Industrial engineering design. Teaching design. Recruitment and retention of high quality bursary students.
Heavy Vehicle Braking, Heavy Vehicle Performance Based Standards (PBS), Vehicle Dynamics, Automotive Rim Design, Transport Engineering, Operational Performance, Computational Mechanics.
Thermal management of electronic components, nuclear reactors, turbomachines (axial compressors and turbines) and open/closed cell foaming: micro-electronics cooling with acoustic streaming induced by ultrasonic excitation; thermofluid characterization in isotropic/anisotropic porous media with periodic and stochastic cells under steady/unsteady annular swirling impinging jets and single/multiphase forced convection; phase change for cooling and energy storage and its enhancement with novel porous media; conjugate heat transfer for jet blast deflectors; bio-heat transfer (thermo-physical property characterization of human tooth).
Primary research interests are the experimental and numerical modeling of the aerodynamics, gas dynamics and fluid structure interactions of immersed bodies. Examples include shock-grid interactions, active aeroelastic flutter suppression, subsonic fore-body aerodynamics and inducing trailing vortex instability. Other interests include modeling of flows through turbomachines (gas turbines primarily) and highly resolved CFD. Reynolds number issues in CFD is a particular interest at the moment.
Laminar to turbulent transition in unsteady flows; ultra-high pressure fluid dynamics; design and development of high pressure hydraulic machinery for the mining industry; dynamic simulations of thermo-fluid systems including strong coupling with adjacent moving masses.
Fatigue and fracture mechanics, contact mechanics, finite element analysis, aluminium alloys, fiber and nano-composites.
Elastodynamics – finite element/boundary element modeling. Composites – dynamic stress concentration around fibres. Ultrasonic NDE – propagation and scattering of ultrasonic elastic waves.
Highly transient, compressible gas flows particularly in the field of impulsive motion and vortices, as well as weak shock dynamics and acoustics; computational fluid dynamics modeling and analysis of such gas flows especially as regards the modeling of turbulence in on-inertial reference frames.
Trajectory optimization, optimal control and its related numerical methods. Dynamics and nonlinear control of aerospace vehicles. Modeling of the human pilots and resulting interactions with aircraft dynamics.
Fatigue, Fracture Mechanics and Damage Tolerance analysis of metallic aircraft structures. Conventional and innovative aerospace technologies: Split Sleeve Cold Working, ForceMate, StressWave, Laser Shock Peening, etc., for fatigue life enhancement of metallic components; New welding technologies (Friction Stir Welding, Laser Welding, etc.); Titanium machining and High Speed Machining. Mechanical testing, Finite Element Analysis and processes optimization.
Composite materials and structures in general, prediction and measurement of residual stresses in composite materials. The use of natural fibres in composite structures. Analysis of functionally graded plates.
Study of unsteady effects generated by bodies in accelerated motion in compressible fluids and also internal combustion engines research with special focus on alternative fuels and methods of enhancing efficiency in petrol and diesel engines.
Heat transfer, mine refrigeration and ventilation systems, solar energy
The study of both steady and unsteady compressible flows, with particular reference to shock waves and their application, ranging from supersonic aerodynamics to safety issues and explosions. Density sensitive and time-resolved visualization techniques, together with computational simulation, are the main diagnostics that are employed, together with a wide range of experimental test facilities.
Supply Chain Risk Management - in manufacturing SMME’s; in general.
Business Improvement and Performance in the context of - Manufacturing SMME’s; Supply Chain Management; Quality Management; Project Management; Business Processes