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Coordinates: 50°45′20.60″N 4°23′10.60″E / 50.755722°N 4.386278°E / 50.755722; 4.386278

The von Karman Institute for Fluid Dynamics is a non-profit educational and scientific organization. Founded in 1956, it is located in Sint-Genesius-Rode, Belgium.

|headquarters = Belgium Bruxelles

|acronym = VKI

|established = 1956

|director = Jean Muylaert

|language = English, French and Dutch

|URL = www.vki.ac.be

It provides post-graduate education in fluid dynamics (research master in fluid dynamics, former "VKI Diploma Course", doctoral program, stagiaire program and lecture series) and encourages "training in research through research". The von Karman Institute undertakes and promotes research in the field of fluid dynamics. It possesses about fifty different wind tunnels, turbomachinery and other specialized test facilities, some of which are unique or the largest in the world. Extensive research on experimental, computational and theoretical aspects of gas and liquid flows is carried out at the VKI under the direction of the faculty and research engineers, sponsored mainly by governmental and international agencies as well as industries.

Each year, the von Karman Institute for Fluid Dynamics organizes more or less 10 conferences called lecture series on various fields: industrial applications, turbomachinery, aerospace, aerodynamics, propulsion, aero engine, aeroacoustics, biological flows, large eddy simulation.

It hosts three departments, from the older to the younger:

  • Aeronautics and Aerospace: A wide spectrum of facilities and computational tools covers the flow range from the low-speed regime of commercial aircraft to the supersonic and hypersonic regime of atmospheric space entry. The department focuses in particular on the modeling, simulation and experimental validation of atmospheric entry flows and thermal protection systems (TPS), including transition to turbulence and stability. The experimental studies are carried out in its top level Mach 14, Mach 6 and Induction Coupled Plasma windtunnels, for which dedicated measuring techniques have been developed e.g. involving spectroscopic laser techniques. On the computational simulation side the department has developed an extendable software pllatform Coolfluid for high performance computational flow simulation which incorporates the research on numerical algorithms, advanced physico-chemical and plasma models as well as fluid-structure interaction and conjugate heat transfer.
  • Turbomachinery & Propulsion: The Turbomachinery and Propulsion department specializes in the aero-thermal aspects of turbomachinery components for aero-engines and industrial gas turbines, space propulsion units, steam turbines and process industry compressors and pumps. It has accumulated wide skills in high speed wind tunnel testing and related measurement techniques development and application. The department has acquired a world recognised expertise on steady/unsteady aerodynamic and aero/thermal aspects of high pressure, including cooling, and low pressure turbomachinery components through the design, development and use of a number of unique wind tunnels.

On the computational side, the department has over 20 years of experience in the analysis of flow in turbomachines, and in the design techniques and multi-disciplinary optimization methods or their components.

  • Environmental and applied Fluid Dynamics: The Environmental and Applied Fluid Dynamics (EA) department covers all kinds of activities complementary to the other two departments related to fluid dynamics in the academic and industrial world. It has a large expertise in the study of aeroacoustics, multiphase flows, vehicle aerodynamics, biological flows and environmental flows (including the study of interaction between atmospheric winds and human activities). The department is also involved in the modeling of turbulence and in the development of advanced measurement techniques for fluid dynamics. The department has acquired a unique expertise in the study of fluid dynamics in industrial processes, with the development and construction of experimental facilities dedicated to the study of industrial processes and also in the simulation of industrial flows using CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) codes.


Founded in 1956 following Theodore von Kármán's proposal to create a center of exchange between scientists coming from all over Europe, it is currently supported with subsidies from most of the member countries of NATO and with an income derived from contract research and the one granted by the Lecture Series.

More:

The von Karman Institute has joint the STA project in November 2009. The “Space Trajectory Analysis” or STA software suite is conceived as a research tool to support the analysis phase of a space mission having the ability to analyze, determine, simulate, and visualize a wide range of space trajectories. One of the STA aims is to promote the exchange of technical ideas, and raise knowledge and competence in the areas of applied mathematics, space engineering, and informatics.

See also

External links

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