Flow Control

This research area concerns aspects of flow design and control that are directly related to energy savings or increased efficiency and performance of fluid systems.

Passive, active and reactive means of influencing flows are considered. Examples include

  • drag reduction through surface morphology
  • influence of laminar-to-turbulent transition
  • control of circulation on lifting surfaces, or
  • alleviation of fluctuating loads on flow components to mitigate fatigue and increase lifetime

As such, this research area spans a wide spectrum of scales and application areas, including rotating machinery, aerodynamics or internal flows. The unique rapid prototyping and flow measurement capabilities, the extensive flow simulation expertise and the advanced control theory experience at TFI are instrumental in allowing very complex flow geometries to be addressed, both experimentally and numerically.


  • Scientists at the Institute for Fluid Mechanics and Aerodynamics develop methods of active and passive flow control to optimize wind turbines or airfoils, for example.
  • The joint research centre UTC of the Technical University Darmstadt (TUD) and Rolls-Royce deals with the aerodynamic and thermal interaction between combustion chamber and turbine in aircraft engines.