skip to primary navigationskip to content

Prof Silvana Cardoso

Prof Silvana Cardoso

Reader in Fluid Mechanics and the Environment

Office Phone: 331863


BA, MEng and Teaching Diploma, Chemical Engineering, University of Porto, Portugal, 1991

PhD, Applied Mathematics, University of Cambridge, 1994

Research Interests

Fluids and Environment Group


Research description

The group's main research interests lie in the interaction between chemical reaction, diffusion of heat and mass, and convection, in both industrial and environmental flows, ranging from the small to the large scales. We have particular interests in flows where buoyancy forces are important, arising from temperature, concentration, and chemical or phase changes.

Generally, a combination of experimental techniques, such as Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV), Infra-red Spectroscopy, colourimetry and densitometry is used. The processes are modelled using scaling, asymptotic and perturbation analytical techniques, complemented by computational fluid dynamics (CFD).

plume simulation of plume

Carbon Dioxide Storage

In order to mitigate global warming, millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide produced by industrial processes are currently being captured and stored deep underground, in depleted oil and gas fields, and in deep saline formations. We are interested in understanding the long-term fate of this stored carbon dioxide: How does in move underground? How does it interact chemically with the surrounding rock? Can there be an accidental leakage of carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere or the deep ocean? What would happen if such an accident were to occur?

These studies also have implications for the understanding of other accidental chemical plumes, released into the atmosphere, ocean or into porous rock structures.

cool flame

Low temperature combustion

Cool flames develop during the low temperature combustion of a gaseous hydrocarbon. This form of combustion has environmental advantages: cool flames do not form soot and produce much less nitrogen and sulphur oxides than full fledged high temperature combustion. As a result, new technological designs using cool flames are emerging, such as “Diesel reformers” (i.e. systems which convert Diesel fuel into other useful chemicals), and in producing hydrogen for fuel cells. Knowledge of cool flames is also vital to understanding the transition from slow combustion to a violent explosion, and thereby preventing numerous accidents in industry. We are currently studying, how motion develops in low-temperature combustion systems and its effects on thermal and chemical explosions, using a combination of theoretical and numerical simulation methods.


Convection, diffusion and phase-change/reaction in solid materials

The interaction between convection, heat conduction, diffusion of reactants and products, and chemical reaction in a permeable material is important in many chemical and biochemical processes. Examples include separation and reaction operations using ceramic membranes, adsorbents, catalyst particles, and supports for mammalian cell culture and biomass growth. We are using theoretical mathematical techniques to understand the controlling mechanisms in such processes and enhance their performance. Our modelling tools in this area may also be used to design new solid materials with specific microstructures.

Key Publications

  1. Cardoso, S. S. S., McHugh, S., 2010, Turbulent plumes with heterogeneous chemical reaction on the surface of small buoyant droplets, J. Fluid Mech. 642:  49-77 (28 pp). doi:10.1017/S0022112009991674

  2. Campbell A.N., Cardoso S.S.S., 2010, Turbulent Plumes with Internal Generation of Buoyancy by Chemical Reaction, J. Fluid Mech. 655,  122–151 (30 pp),  doi:10.1017/S0022112010000728

  3. Andres J.T.H., Cardoso S.S.S., 2011, Onset of convection in a porous medium in the presence of chemical reaction, Phys. Rev. E 83, 046312 (6 pp), DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.83.046312.

  4. McHugh, S., Cardoso, S. S. S., 2011, Turbulent entrainment into inert and reacting multiphase plumes,  J. Fluid Mech., 682, 577–589 (13 pp). doi:10.1017/jfm.2011.246.

  5. Ting-Yueh Liu and Silvana S. S. Cardoso, 2012 Effects of localised and global convection on thermal explosion in a parallel-plate geometry, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 14(1), 192-199 (8pp), DOI: 10.1039/c1cp22641j   

  6. Andres J.T.H., Cardoso S.S.S., 2012,  Convection and reaction in a diffusive boundary layer in a porous medium: nonlinear dynamics. Special issue on chemo-hydrodynamic patterns, invited paper, Chaos 22, 037113 (9 pp).  DOI: 10.1063/1.4748866

  7. Domingos M.G., Cardoso S.S.S 2013 Turbulent two-phase plumes with bubble-size reduction owing to dissolution or chemical reaction, J. Fluid Mech., 716, 120-136 (17 pp). DOI: 10.1017/jfm.2012.522

  8. Ting-Yueh Liu and Silvana S. S. Cardoso, 2013 Effects of combined forced and natural convection on thermal explosion in a spherical reactor, Combustion and Flame 160(1), 191-203 (13 pp).  DOI: 10.1016/j.combustflame.2012.08.012

  9. F. G. de Azevedo, J. F. Griffiths and S. S. S. Cardoso, 2013,  Bridging the gap between Gray and Yang, Sal'nikov and one-step, non-isothermal reaction schemes for oscillatory and explosive behaviour.  Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 15, 16713-16724 (12 pp). DOI: 10.1039/c3cp52241e.

 Complete list:  Publications of S.S.S. Cardoso.

Not here?

Any new members of the department who are not listed here should please fill in