Computational Modelling Group

Built Environment

For queries about this topic, contact Patrick James.

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Projects

DIPLOS - Dispersion of Localised Releases in a Street Network

Trevor Thomas, Ian Castro (Investigators)

The security threat level from international terrorism, introduced by the UK Security Service, has been classified as either "severe" or "critical" for much of its six-year history, and currently remains as "substantial" (source: MI5 website). Part of the risk posed by terrorist threats involves potential releases of air-borne chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear (CBRN) material into highly populated urbanised areas. Smoke from industrial accidents within or in the vicinity of urban areas also pose risks to health and can cause widespread disruption to businesses, public services and residents. The Buncefield depot fire of 2005 resulted in the evacuation of hundreds of homes and closure of more than 200 schools and public buildings for two days; consequences would have been much more severe if prevailing meteorological conditions had promoted mixing or entrainment of the smoke plume into the urban canopy. In both these scenarios it is crucial to be able to model, quickly and reliably, dispersion from localised sources through an urban street network in the short range, where the threat to human health is greatest. However, this is precisely where current operational models are least reliable because our understanding and ability to model short-range dispersion processes is limited. The contribution that DIPLOS will make is:

1. to fill in the gaps in fundamental knowledge and understanding of key dispersion processes,
2. to enable these processes to be parametrized for use in operational models,
3. to implement them into an operational model, evaluate the improvement and apply the model to a case study in central London

Most of the existing research on urban dispersion has focused on air quality aspects, with sources being extensive and distributed in space. Scientifically, this research is novel in focusing on localized releases within urban areas, and on dispersion processes at short range. Through a combination of fundamental studies using wind tunnel experiments and high resolution supercomputer simulations, extensive data analysis and development of theoretical and numerical models, DIPLOS will contribute to addressing this difficult and important problem from both a scientific research and a practical, operational perspective.

SAVE: Solent Achieving Value through Efficiency

Patrick James, Ben Anderson (Investigators), Luke Blunden

Analysis of 15 minute electricity consumption and 10 second instantaneous power data from 4,000+ households in the Solent region collected over 3 years of a randomised control trial study.

Spatially Embedded Complex Systems Engineering

Seth Bullock (Investigator)

SECSE brought together an interdisciplinary team of scientists working on an ambitious three-and-a-half year project titled. The research cluster spanned neuroscience, artificial intelligence, geography, and complex systems in an attempt to understand the role of spatial organization and spatial processes in complex networks within the domains of neural control, geo-information systems and distributed IT systems such as those implicated in air-traffic control.

Wind direction effects on urban flows

Zheng-Tong Xie, Ian Castro (Investigators), Jean Claus

Numerical simulations of turbulent air flow are conducted on Iridis to investigate the effects of different wind directions on the flow within and above an urban-like canopy.

People

Seth Bullock
Professor, Electronics and Computer Science (FPAS)
Patrick James
Senior Lecturer, Civil Engineering & the Environment (FEE)
Zheng-Tong Xie
Senior Lecturer, Engineering Sciences (FEE)
Trevor Thomas
Lecturer, Engineering Sciences (FEE)
Ben Anderson
Senior Research Fellow, Civil Engineering & the Environment (FEE)
Edward Richardson
Senior Research Fellow, Engineering Sciences (FEE)
Rie Sugimoto
Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Sound & Vibration Research (FEE)
Luke Blunden
Research Fellow, Civil Engineering & the Environment (FEE)
Leonidas Bourikas
Postgraduate Research Student, Civil Engineering & the Environment (FEE)
Jean Claus
Postgraduate Research Student, Engineering Sciences (FEE)
Johannes Van Der Horst
Postgraduate Research Student, Electronics and Computer Science (FPAS)
Petrina Butler
Administrative Staff, Research and Innovation Services
Ian Castro
None, None