CREOL SEMINAR: Kareem Ahmed, University of Central Florida

Friday, September 27, 2024 11 a.m. to noon

Title: High-Speed Compressible Turbulent Reacting Flows from Hypersonics and Energy to Space Rockets and Exploding Stars


Abstract: High-speed reacting flows power our everyday life on earth through the heart of many energy generation and propulsion systems, such as gas turbines, internal combustion, and jet engines. They also power the universe through energy produced in stars, such as in the sun, and in the most powerful explosions known in the universe, supernovae explosions.

High-speed compressible turbulent reacting flows imposes numerous fundamental challenges driven by significant compressibility effects and strong coupling between exothermic reactions and the turbulent flow. Such combustion regimes are fundamental to the operation of many modern propulsion applications, from gas-turbine/jet engines to scramjets and rotating detonation engines.

The presentation will overview of a range of phenomena recently discovered in experimental studies of high-speed, compressible, turbulent reacting flows. The topics include intrinsic instabilities of reacting turbulence, flame-scale turbulence production, the onset of catastrophic transitions, spontaneous runaway mechanism of fast turbulent flames, as well as the non-linear compressible combustion regime. Challenges presented by these findings will be discussed based on fundamental understanding of high-speed compressible turbulent reacting flows.


About the Speaker: Dr. Ahmed is a Professor at the Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at University of Central Florida, a faculty of the Center for Advanced Turbomachinery & Energy Research and the Florida Center for Advanced Aero-Propulsion. Before joining UCF, he was a Faculty at Old Dominion University. Prior to that, he was a Senior Aero/Thermo Engineer at Pratt & Whitney Military Engines working on Advance Engine Programs and Technologies (F35 and F22 programs). He also served as a faculty at Florida State University. At UCF, Dr. Ahmed leads creative and technologically crucial research in advanced propulsion and energy research focusing on hypersonic and supersonic turbulent reacting flows, deflagrations and detonations, high-speed compressible turbulent flows, and advanced laser optical diagnostics through experimental research and physics-based models with more than $27.9 million in research funding. The research has a broad impact in terms of applications for hypersonics (featured in PNAS), space and jet propulsion, power generation and gas turbine engines, fire safety, and extends to supernova science (exploding stars, featured in Science). He has authored over 286 scholarly articles leading a large research group (53 students and post-docs).

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