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The Department of Defense (DOD) will support spray studies with a grant of up to $7.5 million

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Associate Professor Olivier Desjardins

University engineers are studying the prediction and control of sprays with the goal of meeting the U.S. Department of Defense’s needs for better performance and efficiency.

The engineers say a better understanding of spray physics and control could improve combustion systems, liquid cooling, 3D printing and even help to mitigate the wakes of ships.

The Department of Defense (DOD) will support the spray studies with a grant of up to $7.5 million over five years.

The grant is part of the Defense Department’s Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI). The program recently awarded 23 grants totaling up to $162 million over five years.

“Over the past 30 years, the DOD’s MURI program has resulted in significant capabilities for our military forces and opened up entirely new lines of research,” said Melissa L. Flagg, deputy assistant secretary of defense for research.

The spray project is led by Olivier Desjardins, an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at Cornell University in New York. In addition, the engineering team includes S. “Bala” Balachandar, the William F. Powers Professor in mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of Florida; Alberto Aliseda, associate professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Washington; Ted Heindel, the Bergles Professor of Thermal Science at Iowa State University, and Daniel J. Bodony, the Blue Waters Associate Professor of aerospace engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The team’s goal is to combine their expertise in theoretical, computational and experimental studies to develop spray controls. They expect to study many control methods – their ideas include changing flow conditions in the nozzle, producing electrically charged fluids and using acoustic vibrations.

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