The Aeroelasticity research team is led by Dr Sina Stapelfeldt.

Aeroelastic phenomena are responsible for a significant number of aircraft engine distress events. They account for a large proportion of engine development costs and severely restrict the design and operating space, imposing limitations on efficiency and performance. Despite their importance, some of these phenomena are poorly understood because the underlying intricate fluid dynamics are further complicated by deforming structures.

The team’s research uses computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to predict and improve our understanding of a range of aeroelastic phenomena in aircraft engines, ranging from flutter and forced response to compressor stall and surge. This involves the development of advanced computational methods and the application of these to uncover underlying physical mechanisms.

Current PhD projects



Project title


Jonah Harris



Harry Hill

Embedded row aero-damping

Vibration of blade-disk assemblies generates unsteady perturbations which travel as waves through the duct of a compressor. As the blade rows are embedded with a multi-stage system, these discrete frequency waves reflect back, modifying the blade loading and can cause aeroelastic instabilities.  This project aims to model such waves in order to predict the onset of flutter in embedded multi-stage environments.

Vinko Jezercic



Sam Mitchell



Xu Zhishang

Lattice Boltzmann Methods for High Reynolds flows

Xu’s research develops an adaptive mesh refinement solver for the lattice Boltzmann method (LBM).  LBM has advantages in running efficiently on massively parallel architectures and simulating complex geometries or moving boundaries. Grid refinement is essential to reduce the computational cost of high Reynolds number simulations.



Post-doctoral research projects



Project title


Dr Prathiban Sureshkumar



Dr Sina Stapelfeldt

Non-synchronous vibration in axial compressors

A common cause of vibration in compressors is stall, when the orderly flow through the compressor breaks down and asymmetric time-varying loads trigger vibrations. This research, carried out in collaboration with TU Darmstadt and École Centrale de Lyon, uses experimental techniques and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to investigate the fluid-structure interaction mechanism under these conditions.