Duncan joined the Loughborough / Rolls-Royce University Technology Centre in Combustion System Aerothermal Processes, in 1996 obtaining a PhD in Gas Turbine Aerodynamics in 2001. After a period as a post-doc Duncan became a Lecturer in 2011, a Senior Lecturer in 2014, a Reader in 2019 and a Professor of Applied Aerodynamics in 2023. Duncan’s academic strengths lie in a strong synergy between his research and teaching. He has more than 25 years of research experience in the experimental and computational study of the internal flows within modern gas turbines. His work within the Rolls-Royce/Loughborough University Technology Centre (UTC) has contributed to developing the next generation of gas turbines with increased efficiency, reduced fuel burn and reduced emissions. This continues in his role as Academic Lead in the National Centre for Combustion and Aerothermal Technology (NCCAT) and Co-I for the EPRSC Centre of Doctoral Training in Future Propulsion and Power. Duncan’s industry driven research provides both social and economic benefits to both the aerospace and the wider community. In his teaching, Duncan strives to use this state-of-the-art research to inspire and train the next generation of world leading engineers. Engaging students with the real problems faced by the aerospace industry allows them to understand the future landscape and apply their knowledge in meaningful way. Duncan is a great believer in learning by experience and application.
- PhD, “Experimental and Computational Study of Hybrid Diffusers for Radially Staged Combustors”, Loughborough University, 2002.
- BEng 1st Class in Aeronautical Engineering, Loughborough University, 1994.
- Member of the Royal Aeronautical Society.
- Chartered Engineer (via the Royal Aeronautical Society).
- Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Key awards and accomplishments
- Best Paper Awards
- “Enhanced External Aerodynamic Performance of a Generic Combustor Using and Integrated OGV/Pre-Diffuser Design Technique”, Proceedings of the ASME Turbo Expo 2006: Turbomachinery Technical Conference and Exposition, Barcelona, Spain, June 2006, https:///10.1115/GT-2006-90184.
- “The Influence of Fan Root Flow on the Aerodynamic of a Low-Pressure Compressor Transition Duct”, Proceedings of the ASME Turbo Expo 2019: Turbomachinery Technical Conference and Exposition, Phoenix, Arizona, USA, June 2019, https://doi.org/10.1115/GT2019-92048.
Experimental and computational study of the internal flows within modern gas turbines. Fundamentally this includes diffusing flows, boundary layer separation, wake mixing, secondary flows, and the effects of swirl, curvature and pressure gradients. Extends to more applied systems such as low emission combustor architectures, the compressor/combustor interface, integrated outlet guide vane design, advanced pre-diffuser development, fuel injector design, the combustor/turbine interface and transition duct aerodynamics. Ground vehicle aerodynamics, cycling aerodynamics, advanced experimental techniques, and computational fluid dynamics.
- Applied Aerodynamics
- Rolls-Royce UTC in Combustion System Aerothermal Processes (www.lboro.ac.uk/research/rolls-royce-utc/)
- National Centre for Combustion and Aerothermal Technology (www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/aae/research/nccat/)
- EPSRC CDTs in “Gas Turbine Aerodynamics” and “Future Propulsion and Power” (www.turbocdt.org/)
Grants and contracts:
- CAVENDISH - Consortium for the AdVent of aero-Engine Demonstration and aircraft Integration Strategy with Hydrogen, EU and Innovate UK, 2023 – 2026.
- HYEST – Hydrogen Engine System Technologies, Innovate UK, 2022 – 2025.
- KTP in Compressor Transition Ducts, Rolls-Royce and Innovate UK, 2021 – 2023.
- EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Power and Propulsion, 2019 – 2027.
- IDA – Intermediate Compressor Case Duct Aerodynamics, EU Clean Sky 2, 2018 – 2020.
- ELECT – Enhanced Low Emission Combustion Technology, Innovate UK, 2017 – 2020.
- iCORE – Integrated Core Technologies – Innovate UK, 2016 – 2019.
- UltraFan Matrix Air Cooled Oil Cooler Installation, Rolls-Royce, 2016 – 2017.
- ESPRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Gas Turbine Aerodynamics, 2014 – 2022.
- Modelling Capability for Air Flow within Turbine Case Cooling Systems, Rolls-Royce, 2013 – 2016.
- NADIT – Novel Aerodynamic Design and Integration Technologies, TSB, 2013 – 2016.
- Cooled Cooling Air System Aerodynamics, Rolls-Royce, 2013 – 2018.
- LEMCOTEC – Low Emissions Core Engine Technologies, EU FP7, 2011 – 2015.
- IMPACT_AE – Intelligent Design Methodologies for Low Pollutant Combustors for Aero-Engines, EU FP7, 2011 – 2015.
- KIAI – Knowledge for Ignition, Acoustics and Instabilities, EU FP7, 2009 – 2013.
- NEWAC – New Aero Engine Concepts, EU FP6, 2006 – 2010.
- INTELLECT D.M. - Integrated Lean Low Emission Combustor Technology - Design Methodology, EU FP6, 2004 – 2007.
- AIDA – Aggressive Intermediate Duct Aerodynamics, EU FP6, 2004 – 2008.
Current teaching responsibilities:
Loughborough University, Department of Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering
BEng and MEng Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering
- Low Speed Aerodynamics (TTB101)
- Gas Turbine Design (TTC050 and TTC011)
- Introduction to CFD (TTC102)
- Experimental Fluid Mechanics (TTD014)
- Propulsion Design for the Environment (TTD105)
- Part C and D Individual Projects
MSc in Automotive Systems Engineering, Loughborough University
- Vehicle Aerodynamics (TTP245) - Advanced Experimental Methods.
EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Gas Turbine Aerodynamics and in Propulsion and Power
- MRes at University of Cambridge - Combustion System Aerodynamics and Advanced Experimental Methods.
- Lead Loughborough University Mini-Project / Short Course in Combustion System Aerothermal Processes.
Current administrative responsibilities:
- Part C & D Year for the Aeronautical engineering Course
- Member of the management committee for the:
- National Centre for Combustion and Aerothermal Technology
- Rolls-Royce University Technology Centre in Combustion System Aerothermal Processes
- EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Propulsion and Power
Barnes, J, Tuplin, S, Walker, D (2022) Flight dynamics of ski jumping: Wind tunnel testing and numerical modelling to optimise flight position, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part P: Journal of Sports Engineering and Technology, ISSN: 1754-3371. DOI: 10.1177/17543371221111625.
Spanelis, A and Walker, D (2022) A multi-objective factorial design methodology for aerodynamic off-takes and ducts, Aerospace, 9(3), 130, DOI: 10.3390/aerospace9030130.
Tsakmakidou, D, Mariah, I, Walker, D, Hall, C, Simpson, H (2021) Experimental investigation of secondary flows and length reduction for a low-pressure compressor transition duct, Journal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power, 144(1), 011017, ISSN: 0742-4795. DOI: 10.1115/1.4052086.
Spanelis, A and Walker, D (2021) Aerodynamic influence of a bleed on the last stage of a low-pressure compressor and S-duct, Journal of Turbomachinery, 144(2), 021007, ISSN: 0889-504X. DOI: 10.1115/1.4052134.
Walker, D, Mariah, I, Hall, C (2021) An experimental, aerodynamic evaluation of design choices for a low-pressure compressor transition duct, Journal of Turbomachinery, 143(9), 091004, ISSN: 0889-504X. DOI: 10.1115/1.4050598.
Walker, D, Mariah, I, Tsakmakidou, D, Vadhvana, H, Hall, C (2019) The influence of fan root flow on the aerodynamic of a low-pressure compressor transition duct, Journal of Turbomachinery, 142(1), 011002, ISSN: 0889-504X. DOI: 10.1115/1.4045272.
Walker, A and Rajaratnam, LE (Accepted for publication) Investigation of Wheelhouse Flow Interaction and the Influence of Lateral Wheel Displacement, Energies, ISSN: 1996-1073.
Walker, D, Koli, BR, Beecroft, P (2019) Influence of purge flow swirl at exit to the high-pressure compressor on OGV/pre-diffuser and combustion system aerodynamics, Journal of Turbomachinery, 141(9), ISSN: 0889-504X. DOI: 10.1115/1.4043781.
Li, Y, Walker, D, Irving, J (2018) Improved modelling capabilities of the airflow within turbine case cooling systems using smart porous media, Journal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power, 141(5), ISSN: 0742-4795. DOI: 10.1115/1.4041933.
- Collaborative research under the European Commission Framework Programmes, CleanSky2, Horizon 2020 and the Innovate UK/Aerospace Technology Institute’s Strategic R&D Projects.
- EPSRC Centre of Doctoral Training in Gas Turbine Aerodynamics and in Propulsion and Power with Oxford and Cambridge Universities.
- Industry Collaborations with Rolls-Royce (UK, Deutschland, USA and Canada), GKN Aerospace (Sweden), MTU Aero Engines (Germany), SNECMA, ONERA, (France), AVIO (Italy), ITP (Spain), Jaguar Land Rover, Team Sky Pro Cycling (now Team Ineos), Ski Jumping Great Britain/Ski Jumping Canada.
- Academic Collaborations with Universities of Oxford, Cambridge, Sussex, Surrey, Cranfield, Southampton, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Technische Universität München, Pusan National University, Chalmers University of Technology, Graz University of Technology, Von-Karman Institute, University of Florence, DLR (German Aerospace Institute), University of Stuttgart, University of Madrid.
External roles and appointments:
- Senior Member of the Rolls-Royce UTC in Combustion System Aerothermal Processes.
- Senior Member of the National Centre for Combustion Aerothermal Technology.
- Senior Member of the Member of the EPSRC CDTs in “Gas Turbine Aerodynamics” and “Future Propulsion and Power”.
- Project Co-ordinator for Clean Sky 2 Project (IDA - Intermediate Compressor Case Duct Aerodynamics).
- Invited Lecturer on the internal Rolls-Royce Combustion Course, 2018-present.
- Guest Editor, International Journal of Aerospace Engineering, Special Edition, “Advances in Aero-Engines Technology”, 2017.
- Vanguard Chair ASME IGTI Turbo Expo Conference – Turbomachinery Committee, 2021 – present.
- Session Chair at ASME IGTI Turbo Expo Conference, 2014 – present.
- Peer-Reviewed Articles for ASME IGTI Turbo Expo., Journal of Turbomachinery, Journal of Gas Turbines and Power, Journal of Propulsion and Power, Experiments in Fluids, The Aeronautical Journal, Computers and Fluids, Journal of Aerospace Engineering.
- PhD Examiner
- EPRSC Peer Reviewer.