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Mechanical and Civil Engineering Seminar

Thursday, December 8, 2022
11:00am to 12:00pm
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Gates-Thomas 135
Adventures in Applied Fluid Mechanics
Sheldon Green, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of British Columbia,

Mechanical and Civil Engineering Seminar Series

Abstract: This talk focuses on recent research on three industrial processes in which fluid mechanics plays a salient role – papermaking, energy recovery ventilation, and train track friction modification. Research in papermaking has involved the study of paper pressing, drying, and creping, and addresses those areas with a combination of experimental, analytical, and numerical methods. Energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) are air-to-air energy exchangers used to conserve energy in building ventilation. Recent work, involving a combination of analytical and experimental methods, has shed light on condensation in ERVs and means to enhance ERV effectiveness. The high dry friction between metal railroad tracks and wheels results in excessive fuel consumption, noise, and wear. To alleviate these problems liquid friction modifier can be applied to railroad tracks as either a pool through which the wheel rolls, or as a liquid stream from a moving train. The fluid mechanics of both application processes is studied through complementary experimental, analytical, and numerical methods. One recurring theme is that applied fluid mechanics research both benefits from fundamental understanding and raises interesting fundamental research questions. A second theme is the need for a broad perspective to solve industrially relevant fluid mechanics problems.

Bio: Professor Green earned his B.A.Sc. in Engineering Science from the University of Toronto in 1984. Seeking a more temperate climate, he became a graduate student at Caltech, earning his Ph.D. under the supervision of Allan Acosta in 1988. Following a year as a postdoctoral fellow at Caltech, he joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of British Columbia, where he served as Head of Department from 2007 to 2018.  He is a recipient of the Killam Teaching Prize, and is a Fellow of the ASME and the Canadian Academy of Engineering. His academic interests fall in the broad area of Applied Fluid Mechanics. In his free time he is an avid sea kayaker and cyclist, and an undistinguished rock climber. 

NOTE: At this time, in-person Mechanical and Civil Engineering Lectures are open to all Caltech students/staff/faculty/visitors.

For more information, please contact Mikaela Laite by email at [email protected] or visit