Master and Diploma Projects

For excellent students we also offer projects which should lead to journal publications.

The chair of Fluid Dynamics also supports students who want to arrange their projects in cooperation with industry - provided that there are no non-disclosure agreements.

To top students, we also offer external Master’s projects with friends and colleagues at other universities, for example in Trondheim (Norway), Newcastle (UK) or Berkeley (US). Some prior work as a HiWi with us is a prerequisite, so we can make sure to only send out excellent students.

On request outstanding students can also realize important projects as Research Assistants.

Please contact: [at]

Note on the supervision or execution of an external thesis

Master and Diploma Projects which should lead to publications

250524: Investigating Ammonia Combustion using Large Eddy Simulation

Ammonia combustion has attracted significant interest due to its potential as a clean energy source, especially in the context of de-carbonization efforts. Understanding the complex dynamics of ammonia flames requires advanced computational techniques. This is particularly important due to the inherent challenges in modeling ammonia combustion, such as its low laminar flame speed and large and complex chemistry with wide range of time-scales.

The present project aims at the development of computer models and simulation tools for modeling the combustion of Ammonia. The project will involve the improvement of a numerical framework, the running of simulation, and the development of better reaction and transport models. Simulations will be conducted using the group’s in-house code PsiPhi, applying Servers and Clusters to provide the necessary computational power.

The project would necessitate a strong background in mathematics, numerics and fluid dynamics. If interested, please contact Prof. Dr.-Ing. Andreas Kempf ( or Parsa Ghofrani (

250524: Modeling Nano Particle Formation in Iron Powder Combustion

The utilization of iron powder in combustion processes presents a way to advance decarbonization initiatives by offering a sustainable alternative to conventional coal-based applications. Indeed, the reaction between iron and oxygen results in the formation of iron oxide without emitting any harmful emissions. The resulting iron oxide particles could be reduced to iron particles to close this energy cycle and use iron as a renewable energy source. Nevertheless, during the oxidation of iron powder, a certain amount of metals (iron or iron-oxide) is lost due to evaporation and the formation of nanoparticles, which requires further understanding and optimization through modeling and simulations.

The present project aims to develop sub-models for modeling the formation of nanoparticles in the process of iron powder combustion, based on detailed large eddy simulations. The project will involve improving a numerical framework, running simulations, and developing better reaction and transport models.

The project would necessitate a strong background in mathematics, numerics and fluid dynamics. If interested, please contact Prof. Dr.-Ing. Andreas Kempf ( or Parsa Ghofrani (

240100: A beam-bending H2 flame detector

The detection of Hydrogen flames is a prerequisite for safety considerations in the ever-growing hydrogen (H2) energy systems. Its nearly invisible pale blue colour, especially in daylight, and low radiant heat that is usually only detectable very close to the flame, call for a reliable detection system to aid in effective safety control features such as shut-down, alarm activation, ventilation activation (when needed) and so on.

In this project, the concept of beam bending that is similar to the schlieren or background oriented schlieren (BOS) methods is to be utilised for the design of an optical detection system. The changes in refractive index within a reacting gas (flame) will bend light rays. The deflection of the light rays can be measured either by imaging a background pattern behind the combusting flow, or by aligning a light emitter and detector on opposite sides of the volume of interest. In the first phase, a weak laser pointer (low enough energy to prevent damage to the sensor) and a surveillance camera will be positioned around a flame for measurements to test the concept. Additionally, the existing BOS method of the group will be utilised to measure deflections on a background pattern behind the flame using a second camera. The two methods should be tested in terms of applicability and sensitivity. 

The candidate must have a good grasp of MATLAB and the capability to perform optical experiments in the lab. Additionally, C programming experience is considered advantageous. The results of this work can potentially be published in a peer-reviewed journal with international recognition.

​For further information please contact:

230502: Direct Numerical Simulation of Hydrogen and Tracer-Molecule (De-) Mixing in a Turbulent Flow

The mixing of hydrogen gas with air or other gases is of great importance for energy- and process-applications but also for studies on hydrogen safety. Research on laser-diagnostics has lead to elegant non-intrusive techniques for analyzing mixing, based on tracer molecules. These techniques have been established for gases with Schmidt- or Prandtl-numbers near unity, but the very high diffusivity of hydrogen may limit the suitability of such diagnostics. This Master’s or Bachelor’s project aims to conduct Direct Numerical Simulations (DNS) of hydrogen mixing in air, including an acetone tracer that would be applied to an experiment. The aim of the project is to establish the conditions, length and time-scales where an (organic) tracer is suitable for studying hydrogen mixing, and where it is not. Simulations will be conducted using the group’s in-house code PsiPhi, applying Servers and Clusters to provide the necessary computational power

If interested, please contact Prof. Kempf.  (

221018: Bicycle Aerodynamics

Bicycles (Road, Triathlon and TT) are now designed with aerodynamics in mind. One aspect that is much discussed (and rarely analysed in detail) is the aerodynamic drag generated by the wheels. Likely sources from a single wheel are the wakes of the leading rim and the trailing tire, the wakes of the advancing spokes, the roughness of the advancing tire (at its highest point) but also complex vortex systems generated by the rotating wheel. This Master’s project will aim at simulating the flow around a rotating wheel in detail, analyzing the flow-fields and the sources of drag, and possibly investigate (known) remedies - like higher and wider rim profiles, different tire profiles, or even the use of (aerodynamic!) mud-guards. Further, optional topics include the interaction of the wheel with the fork or the effects of the braking system on drag.

If interested, please contact Prof. Kempf.  ( or Dr. S.J. Baik (

221017: Master Project: Flamespeed measurements in Bunsenburner

Bunsen Flames have been used for over one hundred years, and they have been studied for almost as long. A simple theory assumes an unperturbed flow field upstream of the flame and an (almost) unperturbed flow filed downstream. As a result of this simple flow field, Bunsen flames can be used to measure the laminar flame speed. Unfortunately, precise measurements cannot neglect the details of the flow-field, and neither can they neglect the curvature (at least in circumferential direction) of the flame. To improve the insight in such a flame, and the implications on the measurements of laminar flame speed, a Master’s project shall be conducted, simulating the laminar flow field in detail, combined with detailed combustion simulations by solving a suitable reaction mechanism. If possible, the effects of differential transport (due to the high diffusivity of hydrogen) should also be considered. The work will be conducted with OpenFOAM, a well established, powerful CFD-toolbox for which various extensions have been developed at the chair of fluid dynamics.

If interested, please contact Prof. Kempf.  ( or Prof. Wlokas (

211214: Master Project: Wind and turbulence measurements by (camera) drone

Town planners, architects and councils require information on the wind-field, turbulence characteristics and pollutant transport throughout townscapes. Unfortunately, detailed wind-speed measurements, at many points and with many repetitions, are laborious, time-consuming, costly and often not practical. The present project aims to explore the idea of using a camera drone for measuring the wind speed with high temporal resolution, including gusts and turbulence. For this project, a camera drone must be identified that features a location holding feature, and which provides access to the data of the flight-control computer. This would permit to extract power settings, headings and inclinations, enabling to eventually extract data that permits to deduce the wind speed. In the main phase of the project, methods for computing the wind-speed (and its evaluation in time) shall be explored, combined with statistical methods for extracting time-averaged flow-field data and statistics on turbulence.

If interested, please contact Prof. Kempf.  (

210824: Bachelor/Master Project: Numerical study of flames forming nanoparticles

The numerical prediction of nanoparticle requires adequate and precise models for the characterization of the turbulent behavior of the flame as well of the different phenomena involved in nanoparticle production. Direct Numerical Simulations (DNS), providing a full description of all the temporal and spatial scales, and Large Eddy Simulations (LES), resolving only the most energetic scales, have been used to investigate nanoparticle production in academic configurations. The aim of this project is to investigate different numerical simulations of reactive flows forming nanoparticles, which will help to clarify the turbulence-particle-dynamics interaction and will guide the modeling efforts. Our department is seeking for highly qualified candidates with a strong mathematical and programming background. The successful candidate will have access to our in-house code PsiPhi and will use OpenFOAM for the investigation of nanoparticles production in reactive cases. He/she will also profit of the presence of many experienced researchers, active collaborations with experts in the area of numerical modeling of nanoparticles production in reacting flows, and in massively-parallel DNS-LES from the Chair for Fluid Dynamics.

For further information please contact Dr. Luis Cifuentes (luis.cifuentes [at] .

210823: (Ion-) flow modeling for electrodes and active surfaces

Elektrodes in batteries, fuel cells or chemical reactors are normally micro-structured, leading to a complex, inhomogeneous flow of ions in the electrolyte. The present projects aims to develop, test and validate a modeling framework for simulating transport near and in such electrodes. A general interest in computer programming and mathematical modeling is expected, a reasonable background in the relevant subjects is required.
For questions or to apply for the project, please contact Prof. Andreas Kempf ( andreas.kempf [at] ).

210822: Development of a parallel systems modeling framework focused on CO2 emission (reductions)

Many engineers work on the reduction of carbon emissions by improving efficiency or by „decarbonization“, trying to substitute fossil fuels by other means. Unfortunately, such work falls short of looking at the „bigger picture“ - where changes in life-style, modes of transport, fuel consumption, entertainment and the way we work promise much greater savings in emissions. However, such changes would introduce enormous side-effects that cannot be predicted - largely due to highly non-linear interactions and complex couplings between the „players“. The present project aims at developing a flexible framework for general systems modeling, based on an agent model, to enable estimates of the impact of certain changes in lifestyle on carbon emissions and the economy.
This project can be considered „blue sky research“ and multiple students can work on it in parallel. A general interest in computer programming and mathematical modeling is expected, a reasonable background in the relevant subjects is required.
For questions or to apply for the project, please contact Prof. Andreas Kempf ( andreas.kempf [at] ).

210821: Flow simulation of moving bicycles and bicycle parts

(Road and track) cycling has evolved tremendously, with great gains achieved by optimizing aerodynamics. However, it is not really clear „what works and why“ and what can be considered a „placebo“, mainly making a rider feel faster. The project aims at studying chosen bicycle parts (and complete bicycles with riders) to assess which parts and which interactions have (significant) effects on overall drag and performance. CFD- imulations will be conducted in three dimensions and with moving grids. A good background in mathematics, numerics and fluid mechanics is expected, an interest in cycling would be beneficial.
For questions or to apply for the project, please contact Prof. Andreas Kempf ( andreas.kempf [at] ).

200127: Master's Project: Numerical Investigation of Engine Knock

Engine knock remains a little understood phenomenon and represents a major unsolved problem in the context of ICE (internal combustion engines). It prevents the use of an engines optimal state of load, thus lowering the efficiency of the engine. Pre-combustion knock (or super-knock, a local premature ignition) is especially dangerous, as it may result in the complete failure of the engine. The aim of this thesis is to numerically investigate the physics of knock for a detonation wave propagating at Chapman-Jouguet speed. This detonation wave exhibits an unstable wave front, including the stochastic appearance of high momentum jets, which need to be analyzed. The simulations will be carried out with in-house code PsiPhi, whereby the setup of this type of simulation must be implemented and suitable ways to post-process the data must be found.

The project is challenging and requires strong skills in the field of fluid dynamics, thermo dynamics, reaction kinetics and numerics (FORTRAN, Python). It will be only attempted with very good candidates or long term HiWis.

For further information please contact Prof. Andreas Kempf ( andreas.kempf [at] ).

170605: Large-Eddy Simulation of non-linear Thermoaccoustics (HiWi/Master)

Low emission (lean premixed combustion) gas turbine engines are prone to thermo-accoustic instabilities that can lead to the destruction of engines, which must be avoided, necessitating a detailed understanding of the phenomenon from simulation. Such Large-Eddy Simulations will be conducted using the in-house code PsiPhi, which is suitable for efficient, massively parallel simulations on super-computers. Recent work by our research group has shown that the normal, linear treatment of wave-propagation may not be sufficient at high frequencies of the instability, and we aim to simulate the phenomenon at high pressure levels, where even (non-linear) shock waves may occur. The present project aims at analyzing the phenomenon and preparing further research into this new topic. The work will involve setting up simulations, processing and interpreting the data, and writing a suitable report. A short version of the thesis shall be turned into a research paper that can be submitted to an international journal. A suitable student will have a strong background in fluid mechanics, mathematics and computer programming, and will be open to learning about new phenomena. The present project can be conducted in collaboration with researchers from the Technical University of Munich (TUM).  A HiWi job on related topics can be offered prior to the Master’s project, using a closely related software.

Please contact Prof. Andreas Kempf (andreas.kempf [at] for further information.

Project works

161108: Optimised Numerical Schemes for the Large-Eddy Simulation of Turbulent Combustion

Large-Eddy Simulation is a modern CFD technique for accurately predicting turbulent reacting flows by affordable computer simulation. The method has evolved over the last 15 years and is finally becoming available in commercial software programs and being used by industry leaders.
However, the method requires numerical schemes that combine high numerical accuracy with low numerical oscillation. Our group has used a hybrid approach with good success, combining accurate central differencing schemes for momentum transport with non-dispersive TVD schemes for scalar transport. Where this hybrid approach combines good accuracy with low dispersion, it can lead to inconsistencies when applied with certain combustion models based on the "Flames Surface Density" approach.
The present project will apply different combinations of available numerical schemes to different test cases, to eventually assess the overall error resulting from the schemes. Based on the findings, further transport schemes (e.g. (W)ENO) shall be implemented and tested, aiming to improve overall accuracy, reliability and robustness of the simulations.
Students interested in this project will require a strong background in fluid-mechanics and should ideally have some background in numerical techniques, programming, combustion and turbulence modelling.

Please contact Prof. Andreas Kempf ( andreas.kempf [at] ) for further information.