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David Gillespie MA DPhil

Associate Professor of Engineering Science

Fellow of St Catherine's College

TEL: 01865 288761
COLLEGE: St Catherine's College


Professor David Gillespie attended Jesus College Oxford as an undergraduate and, following a short period in the chemical industry, as a graduate obtaining his doctorate in 1996. He has been the Rolls-Royce Fellow in Engineering Science since 2003.

In his seals for jet engines and industrial gas turbines project, David's work focuses on the development of leaf seals, non-contacting fluidic seals, self-centring seals through experiment, analytical and flow modelling. Furthermore, this project investigates high speed, high temperature tribology of seal materials

David’s tip clearance control mechanisms for gas turbines research focuses on the development of robust thermally activated casing diameter control systems for the high temperature environment typically surrounding the rotating stages of the turbine.

His project on heat exchangers for intercoolers and recuperators characterises the heat transfer and loss through primary flow passages and surfaces of compact heat exchangers. The work in this project also
characterises and minimises installation loss associated with compact heat exchangers installed in the jet engine environment.

He is also interested in the development of engine-realistic internal cooling systems. Specifically, he is studying Dendritic cooling systems, Ribbed passages with filleted side walls at high and low aspect ratio, Effects of Vocanic Ash Ingestion, Experimental and CFD measurements of tip cooling and passage aerodynamic loss in modified shroudless cooling configurations.

David also develops instrumentation methods using thermochromic liquid crystals and IR camera signals for the measurement of temperature and miniature multi-hole probes for aerodynamic measurements.

Research Interests

  • Gas turbine and jet engine seals
  • Tip clearance control methods
  • Heat Exchangers
  • Cooling systems
  • Volcanic ash ingestion
  • Instrumentation methods