NSF Fluid Dynamics

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Directorate for Engineering (ENG)
The Fluid Dynamics program supports fundamental research and education on mechanisms and phenomena governing fluid flow. Proposed research should contribute to basic understanding; thus enabling the better design;predictability; efficiency; and control of systems that involve fluids. Encouraged are proposals that address innovative uses of fluids in materials development; manufacturing; biotechnology; nanotechnology; clinical diagnostics and drug delivery; sensor development and integration; energy and the environment. While the research should focus on fundamentals, a clear connection to potential application should be outlined.

Major areas of interest and activity in the program include:
1. Bio-inspired Fluid Mechanics and Bio-flows: biomimetics; intracellular flows; fluid-structure interactions; hemodynamics; swimmers; insect flight; fins; biological flow processes; flows in biomedical devices; drug delivery.
2. Flow of Complex Fluids: non-Newtonian fluid mechanics; viscoelasticity; flow of polymer solutions and melts; gelation; flow-induced structuring; DNA dynamics; new fluid materials.
3. Micro- and Nano-fluidics: micro-and nano-scale flow phenomena; biomedical microdevices; effects of nano-inclusions on rheological properties; molecular dynamics simulations; optofluidics.
4. Turbulence and Transition: theory; high Reynolds number experiments; large eddy simulation; direct numerical simulation; transition to turbulence; 3-D boundary layers; multi-phase turbulent flows; flow control and drag reduction.
5. Interfacial Interactions and Instabilities: hydrodynamic stability; gas-liquid interfaces; splashing; jetting; droplet interactions; atomization; wetting.
6. Instrumentation and Flow Diagnostics: Instrument development; MEMS; shear stress sensors; novel flow imaging; velocimetry.

Proposals on wind and ocean energy harvesting and on environmental flows could be submitted to the program when the proposed research is focused on fundamental fluid dynamics phenomena or on the development of novel computational fluid dynamics approaches, rather than applications or devices and materials.

Innovative proposals outside of these specific interest areas may be considered. However, prior to submission, it is recommended that the PI contact the Program Director to avoid the possibility of the proposal being returned without review.

Proposals should address the novelty and/or potentially transformative nature of the proposed work compared to previous work in the field. Also, it is important to address why the proposed work is important in terms of engineering science, as well as to also project the potential impact on society and/or industry of success in the research. The novelty or potentially transformative nature of the research should be included, as a minimum, in the Project Summary of each proposal.

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