Professor Qiuhua Liang

BEng; DPhil

  • Associate Dean (Research)
  • Professor of Water Engineering

Research and expertise

My research is focused on computational hydraulics and applications. I have developed high-performance mathematical and numerical models to facilitate sustainable management of hydrosystems interrupted by natural hazards such as floods, tsunamis, debris flows and landslides.

  • Numerical methods: Godunov-type finite volume scheme, discontinuous Galerkin methods (DG methods), smooth particle hydrodynamics, particle-tracking methods, coupled hydrodynamic model and discrete element method for floating debris and mass flows, high-performance computing
  • Modelling dynamic processes of extreme natural hazards to support risk assessment and damage estimation
  • High-resolution urban flood modelling and blue-green infrastructure for flood risk mitigation and resilience
  • Catchment systems modelling (rainfall-runoff, flash flooding, water quality, hydrogeomorphology, landslide, debris flow, floating debris, engineering intervention, etc.) for natural flood management
  • Real-time flood forecasting
  • Crowd-sourced data acquisition, agent-based modelling and coupled human and natural systems modelling
  • Application of AI / deep machine learning in hydroinformatics

Current research activity

  • Impact scenario modelling for risk-based flood warning in India, WCSSP India Science plan, UK Met Office (DN394978; 09/2019 – 03/2021)
  • Water-WISER: EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Water and Waste Infrastructure Systems Engineered for Resilience, EPSRC (EP/S022066/1; 06/2019 – 11/2027)
  • GCRF Living Deltas Hub, UKRI GCRF Collective Programme (NE/S008926/1; 02/2019 – 05/2024),
  • FUTURE-DRAINAGE: Ensemble climate change rainfall estimates for sustainable drainage, NERC UK Climate Resilience programme (NE/S017348/1;02/2019 – 01/2020)
  • 'Living laboratories' for achieving sustainable development goals across national and sub-national scales, NERC Towards a Sustainable Earth programme (NE/S012427/1; 02/2019 – 01/2021),
  • Valuing the benefits of blue/green infrastructure for flood resilience, natural capital and urban development in Viet Nam (ValBGI), NERC-Newton Fund Understanding of the Impacts of Hydrometeorological Hazards in South East Asia programme (NE/S00288X/1; 01/2019 – 01/2021)
  • WeACT: Web-Based Natural Dam-Burst Flood Hazard Assessment and ForeCasting SysTem, NERC SHEAR programme (NE/S005919/1; 09/2018 – 08/2020)
  • TERSE: Techno-Economic framework for Resilient and Sustainable Electrification, EPSRC-GCRF (EP/R030294/1; 05/2018 – 04/2021)
  • Flood-PREPARED: Predicting Rainfall Events by Physical Analytics of REaltime Data, NERC (NE/P017134/1; 05/2017 – 04/2021)
  • Susceptibility of catchments to INTense RAinfall and flooding (SINATRA), NERC Flooding from Intense Rainfall Programme (NE/K008781/1; 09/2013 – 11/2019)

Recently completed research projects

  • REMATCH: Building REsilience to Multi-source Flooding in Southeast/South Asia through a Technology-informed Community-based approacH, NERC-GCRF - Building Resilience (NE/P015476/1)
  • Fluid-floating debris-structure interaction under extreme hydraulic conditions, NSFC (Regular Grant: 51379074)
  • Numerical and laboratory modelling study of meteo-tsunamis and harbour resonance, Royal Society (IE131297)
  • Flood MEMORY: Multi-Event Modelling Of Risk & recoverY, EPSRC (EP/K013513/1)
  • Online Social Networks (OSNs) Based System for Flood Prediction and Management, EPSRC

Recent publications

  • Wang G, Liang Q, Zheng J, Wang P (2019) A New Multilayer Nonhydrostatic Formulation for Surface Water Waves. Journal of Coastal Research, 35(3): 693-710.
  • Liu Z, Zhang H, Liang Q(2019) A coupled hydrological and hydrodynamic model for flood simulation. Hydrology Research, 50(2): 589-606.
  • Xing Y, Liang Q, Wang G, Ming X, Xia X (2019) City-scale hydrodynamic modelling of urban flash floods: the issues of scale and resolution. Natural Hazards, 96: 473-496.
  • Chen H, Liang Q, Liang Z, Liu Y, Xie S (2019) Remote-sensing disturbance detection index to identify spatio-temporal varying flood impact on crop production. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 269-270: 180-191.
  • Xiong Y, Liang Q, Park H, Cox D, Wang G (2019) A deterministic approach for assessing tsunami-induced building damage through quantification of hydrodynamic forces. Coastal Engineering, 144: 1-14.
  • Jiang L, Ling D, Zhao M, Wang C, Liang Q, Liu K (2018) Effective Identification of Terrain Positions from Gridded DEM Data using Multimodal Classification Integration. ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information, 7(11): 443 (15 pages).
  • Hou J, Wang R, Liang Q, Li Z, Huang MS, Hinkelmann R (2018) Efficient surface water flow simulation on static Cartesian grid with local refinement according to key topographic features. Computers & Fluids, 176: 117-134.
  • Xiong Y, Liang Q, Mahaffey S, Rouainia M, Wang G (2018) A novel two-way method for dynamically coupling a hydrodynamic model with a discrete element model (DEM). Journal of Hydrodynamics, 30(5): 966-969.
  • Hou J, Guo K, Liu F, Han H, Liang Q, Tong Y, Li P (2018) Assessing Slope Forest Effect on Flood Process Caused by a Short-Duration Storm in a Small Catchment. Water, 10(9): 1256: 1-20.
  • Xia X, Liang Q(2018) A new efficient implicit scheme for discretising the stiff friction terms in the shallow water equations. Advances in Water Resources, 117: 87-97.
  • Chen H, Liang Q, Liu Y, Xie S (2018) Hydraulic Correction Method (HCM) to Enhance the Efficiency of SRTM DEM in Flood Modeling.Journal of Hydrology, 559: 56-70.
  • Wang G, Fu D, Zheng J, Liang Q, Zhang Y (2018) Analytic study on long wave transformation over a seamount with a pit. Ocean Engineering, 154: 167-176.
  • Xia X, Liang Q(2018) A new depth-averaged model for flow-like landslides over complex terrains with curvatures and steep slopes. Engineering Geology, 234: 174-191.
  • Wang G, Zheng J, Liang Q(2018) Accuracy of depth-integrated nonhydrostatic wave models. Ocean Engineering, 149: 217-225.
  • Hou J, Wang R, Jing H, Zhang X,Liang Q, Di Y (2017) An efficient dynamic uniform Cartesian grid system for inundation modeling. Water Science and Engineering, 10(4): 267-274.
  • Yang H, Li E, Zhao Y,Liang Q(2017) Effect of water-sediment regulation and its impact on coastline and suspended sediment concentration in Yellow River Estuary. Water Science and Engineering, 10(4): 311-319.
  • Chen H, Liang Z, Liu Y, Liang Q, Xie S (2017) Integrated remote sensing imagery and two-dimensional hydraulic modeling approach for impact evaluation of flood on crop yields. Journal of Hydrology, 553: 262-275.
  • Smith L, Liang Q, James P, Wen L (2017) Assessing the utility of social media as a data source for flood risk management using a real-time modelling framework. Journal of Flood Risk Management, 10: 370-380.
  • Xia X, Liang Q, Ming X, Hou J (2017) An efficient and stable hydrodynamic model with novel source term discretization schemes for overland flow and flood simulations. Water Resources Research, 53: 3730-3759.
  • Birkinshaw SJ, Guerreiro SB, Nicholson A, Liang Q, Quinn P, Zhang L, He B, Yin J, Fowler H (2017) Climate Change Impacts on Yangtze River Discharge at the Three Gorges Dam. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 21:1911-1927.
  • Guan M, Liang Q(2017) A two-dimensional hydro-morphological model for river hydraulics and morphology with vegetation. Environ Modell Softw, 88: 10-21.
  • Liang Q, Smith L, Xia X (2016) New prospects for computational hydraulics by leveraging high-performance heterogeneous computing techniques. Journal of Hydrodynamics, 28(6): 977-985.
  • Liang Q, Xia X, Hou J (2016) Catchment-scale high-resolution flash flood simulation using the GPU-based technology. Procedia Engineering, 154: 975-981.
  • Rashid AA, Liang Q, Dawson RJ, Smith LS(2016) Calibrating a High-Performance Hydrodynamic Model for Broad-Scale Flood Simulation: Application to Thames Estuary, London, UK. Procedia Engineering, 154: 967-974.
  • Xing Y, Yang S, Zhou H, Liang Q(2016)Effect of Floodplain Roughness on Velocity Distribution in Mountain Rivers. Procedia Engineering, 154: 467-475.
  • Hou J, Li Z, Liang Q, Li G, Cheng W, Wang W, Wang R(2016) Effects of Morphological Change on Fluvial Flood Patterns Evaluated by a Hydro-geomorphological Model. Procedia Engineering, 154: 441-449.
  • Amouzgar R, Liang Q, Clarke PJ, Yasuda T, Mase H (2016) Computationally Efficient Tsunami Modelling on Graphics Processing Units (GPU). International Journal of Offshore and Polar Engineering, 26(2): 154-160.
  • Lai X, Liang Q, Huang Q, Jiang J, Lu XX (2016) Numerical evaluation of flow regime changes induced by the Three Gorges Dam in the Middle Yangtze. Hydrology Research, nh2016158.
  • Liang Q, Chen K, Hou J, Xiong Y, Wang G, Qiang J (2016) Hydrodynamic modelling of flow impact on structures under extreme flow conditions. Journal of Hydrodynamics, Ser. B, 28(2): 267-274.
  • Ferrer-Boix C, Liang Q(2016) A numerical approach for analysing the performance of a sewage screening chamber. Urban Water Journal, 13(4): 360-371.
  • Xia X, Liang Q(2016) A GPU-accelerated smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) model for the shallow water equations. Environmental Modelling & Software, 75: 28-43.
  • Liang Q, Hou J, Amouzgar R (2015) Simulation of Tsunami Propagation Using Adaptive Cartesian Grids. Coastal Engineering Journal, 57(4): 1550016 (30 pages).
  • Hou J, Liang Q, Li Z, Wang S, Hinkelmann R (2015) Numerical error control for second-order explicit TVD scheme with limiters in advection simulation. Computers & Mathematics with Applications, 70(9): 2197-2209.
  • Wang G, Zheng JH, Liang QH, Zhang W, Huang C (2015) Theoretical analysis of harbor resonance in harbor with an exponential bottom profile. China Ocean Engineering, 29: 821-834.
  • Liang Q, Xia X, Hou J (2015) Efficient urban flood simulation using a GPU-accelerated SPH model. Environmental Earth Sciences, 74(11): 7285-7294.
  • Hou J, Liang Q, Xia X (2015) Robust absorbing boundary conditions for shallow water flow models. Environmental Earth Sciences, 74(11): 7407-7422.
  • Xia X, Huang R, Liang Q, Yu B (2015) A New Physically-Based Simulation Framework for Modelling Flow-Like Landslides. International Journal of Geohazards and Environment, 1(3): 94-100.
  • Liang Q, Hou J, Xia X (2015) Contradiction between the C-property and mass conservation in adaptive grid based shallow flow models: cause and solution. International Journal for Numerical Methods in Fluids, 78(1):17-36.
  • Liang Q, Smith LS (2015) A high-performance integrated hydrodynamic modelling system for urban flood simulations. Journal of Hydroinformatics, 17(4): 518-533.
  • Zhang L, Liang Q, Wang Y, Yin J (2015) A Robust Coupled Model for Solute Transport Driven by Severe Flow Conditions. Journal of Hydro-environment Research, 9: 49-60.
  • Hou J, Liang Q, Zhang H, Hinkelmann R (2015) An efficient unstructured MUSCL scheme for solving the 2D shallow water equations. Environmental Modelling & Software, 66: 131-152.
  • Kesserwani G, Liang Q(2015) RKDG2 shallow-water solver on non-uniform grids with local time steps: application to 1D and 2D hydrodynamics. Applied Mathematical Modelling, 39(3-4): 1317-1340.
  • Smith LS, Liang Q, Quinn PF (2015) Towards a hydrodynamic modelling framework appropriate for applications in urban flood assessment and mitigation using heterogeneous computing. Urban Water Journal, 12(1): 67-78.
  • Lai X, Liang Q, Jiang J, Huang Q (2014) Impoundment Effects of the Three-Gorges-Dam on Flow Regimes in Two China’s Largest Freshwater Lakes. Water Resources Management, 28(14): 5111-5124.
  • Hou J, Liang Q, Zhang H, Hinkelmann R (2014) Multislope MUSCL method applied to solve shallow water equations. Computer and Mathematics with Applications, 68(12): 2012-2027.
  • Lu D, Wang B, Wang Y, Zhou H, Liang Q, Peng Y, Roskilly AP (2014) Optimal operation of cascade hydropower stations using hydrogen as storage medium. Applied Energy, 137: 56-63.
  • Lai X, Liang Q, Yesou H, Daillet S (2014) Variational assimilation of remotely sensed flood extents using a two-dimensional flood model. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 18: 4325-4339.
  • Zhang H, Wang Y, Liang Q, Smith LS, Kilsby CG (2014) Non-negative depth reconstruction for a two-dimensional partial inertial inundation model. Journal of Hydroinformatics, 16(5): 1158-1177.
  • Amouzgar R, Liang Q, Smith L (2014) A GPU-accelerated shallow flow model for tsunami simulations. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Engineering and Computational Mechanics, 167(3): 117-125.
  • Hou J, Simons F, Liang Q, Hinkelmann R (2014) An improved hydrostatic reconstruction method for shallow water model. Journal of Hydraulic Research, 52(3): 432-439.
  • Wang G, Zheng J, Liang Q, Zheng Y (2014) Analytical solutions for oscillations in a harbor with a hyperbolic-cosine squared bottom. Ocean Engineering, 83: 16-23.


I teach water engineering related modules at both undergraduate and postgraduate level and supervise research dissertation projects.


  • Water Engineering
  • Research Dissertation


  • Research Dissertation


Recently completed projects

  • Numerical and Experimental Modelling of Sewage Screening Chamber, Northumbrian Water Limited.


  • Advisor to Beijing Automic Technology Co. Ltd



I graduated from Dalian University of Technology, China in 1997 with a BEng in Port and Waterway Engineering (four-year first degree programme). After spending three years in the construction industry, I came to the UK in September 2000 to study for a DPhil in University of Oxford, followed by one-year postdoctoral research in the same research group between 2005 and 2006. During my time in Oxford, I also worked as a colleague lecturer in St Edmund Hall of Oxford University.

I joined Newcastle University in March 2006 as a Lecturer in Hydraulic Engineering, and was subsequently promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2011 and Professor of Hydrosystems Modelling in 2013. Then in June 2018, I took up my current position as Professor of Water Engineering in the School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering at Loughborough University.

Professional affiliations

  • Member of International Association for Hydro-Environment Engineering and Research (IAHR)
  • Member of International Society of Offshore and Polar Engineering (ISOPE)


  • Outstanding Paper Award by Journal of Flood Risk Management 2018

External activities

  • Leadership Team, IAHR/IWA Joint Committee on Hydroinformatics
  • Technical Program Committee (TPC), International Society of Offshore and Polar Engineering (ISOPE)
  • Visiting professor in Kyoto University and Kobe University, Japan; Wuhan University, Hohai University, Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research (IWHR), Xi’an University of Technology, China
  • Professor and Honorary Vice President, Hebei University of Technology, China
  • Editor/Editorial board: Journal of Hydrology, Journal of Hydrodynamics, Geoenvironmental Disasters, ICE-Water Management, Water Engineering and Science, KSCE Journal of Civil Engineering
  • Reviewer for EPSRC, EPSRC and British Council research grant applications
  • Member of British Council Newton Fund Panel

Key collaborators

My research and enterprise activities are conducted with a range of academic and stakeholder partners, including:

  • UK universities: Newcastle, Reading, Manchester, UCL, Stirling, Hull, Swansea, Exeter
  • Government organisations: CEH, BGS, Met Office
  • Consultants: JBA, Mott MacDonald, Arup
  • International: TU Berlin, DPRI in Kyoto University, a range of universities and government organisations in China and South/Southeast Asia