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Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology

New Special Interest Group: 'Fluid mechanics of cleaning and decontamination'

The UK Fluids Network has announced its first set of Special Interest Groups. SIGs are intended to bring together UK groups in fluid mechanics and related sciences involved in tackling strategic topics in industry and nature.

SIG 10 is on 'Fluid mechanics of cleaning and decontamination'. Cleaning and decontamination operations aim to remove layers of alien material from a substrate. These operations constitute a complex mixture of physical mechanisms, from multiphase transport processes to the chemistry and rheology of the fouling material. The boom in population and living standards, matched by manufacturing, means that current practices are unsustainable in terms of energy, water consumption and environmental pollution. These are critical factors in areas of high water stress and in the food industry, where regular cleaning is essential. Cleaning procedures and technology must therefore improve dramatically, and the SIG will tackle several of the challenges in this area.

The SIG is led by Dr Julien Landel (Mathematics, Manchester) and the group includes mathematicians, physicists, chemists, biologists, toxicologists, mechanical and chemical engineers from Imperial College, the universities of Bath, Birmingham, Bristol, Hertfordshire, Leeds, Oxford and Reading, and Heriot-Watt University.  It has a strong Cambridge presence, with Prof. Stuart Dalziel (Batchelor Laboratory, DAMTP), Dr Stuart Clarke (bp institute/Chemistry), Dr Walter Federle (Zoology), Dr Andrew Wheatley (Chemistry) and Prof. Ian Wilson (CEB, Co-leader).

The network is open and more groups are expected to join. Details of its activities, including industrial collaboration will be available on the SIG website.

The UK Fluids Network is an EPSRC-funded network of academic and industrial research groups, focused on innovative developments and applications in Fluid Mechanics.

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