Denis Aslangil ’19 recognized for “best theoretical approach” for work involving turbulent mixing of fluids with different densities

Mechanical engineering alum Denis Aslangil ’19 received the first place prize for “best theoretical approach” during the National Science Foundation (NSF) Student Poster Competition at the 2019 International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition.

IMECE, which took place in November 2019 in Salt Lake City, is the largest research and development conference put on by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), which focuses primarily on mechanical engineering but encompasses perspectives from many engineering disciplines. 

Students and recent graduates present posters based on their NSF-funded research during the competition.

Aslangil’s winning poster was an extended summary of his PhD dissertation in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics. The objective of his study was to extend turbulence theory to flows with large density variations by analyzing the similarities and differences between buoyancy-driven variable density turbulence and conventional stationary turbulence. Variable-density turbulence has become a fundamental research area in the field of mechanical engineering, with applications in combustion, atmospheric and oceanic flows, and astrophysics.

“I truly feel honored to have my project acknowledged as one among the nation's best projects in mechanical engineering funded by NSF,” Aslangil says. “I would also like to thank my dissertation advisor Professor Arindam Banerjee from Lehigh University and my co-advisor Dr. Daniel Livescu from Los Alamos National Laboratory. If not for their invaluable support and profound knowledge, it would have been impossible to attain such quality and productivity.”

“Winning the top prize in the theoretical research category is a strong testament to the quality of Denis’ dissertation research and how it is valued by a community that is broader than folks working in turbulent flows or fluid dynamics,” says Banerjee, who is an associate professor of mechanical engineering and mechanics and leads the Turbulent Flow Design Group at Lehigh. 

“Turbulent mixing of fluids with different densities is frequently encountered in nature, as well as problems of interest at Los Alamos National Laboratory,” says Livescu. “Thus, Denis’ presented results in his poster are noteworthy both for LANL and the wider scientific community. It is very gratifying to see our work acknowledged by ASME.”

Aslangil says he is excited to be continuing his research, and has already begun working as a postdoctoral fellow at LANL. His current project employs physics informed machine learning techniques to improve variable-density mixing and turbulence models.

—Isabela Madrigal '20 is a student writer for the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science.

Denis Aslangil

Mechanical engineering alum Denis Aslangil ’19 presented his work at IMECE in November 2019 and received first prize for "best theoretical approach" in the NSF Student Poster Competition.

Arindam Banerjee

Arindam Banerjee leads the Turbulent Flow Design Group in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics at Lehigh University.