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Thomas Sykes

Postdoctoral Research Assistant in Fluid Dynamics


Dr Sykes is a Royal Society funded postdoctoral research assistant in fluid dynamics, working with Alfonso A. Castrejón-Pita in the Fluid Dynamics Laboratory. Before moving to Oxford, he completed an undergraduate Mathematics degree (BSc, Leeds, 2016), followed by an integrated PhD and MSc in the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training at the University of Leeds in 2020. His work has been published as articles in several leading peer-reviewed journals, which have attached the attention of international popular and scientific media outlets (e.g. Popular Mechanics, FY Fluid Dynamics, Please feel free to contact Tom to discuss any aspect of his work.

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Research Interests

Tom's research focuses on various aspects of fluid dynamics, especially multiphase flows with free surfaces, specialising in droplet dynamics (coalescence, splashing, mixing, breakup, collisions, etc.), interfaces and complex fluids (colloids, surfactants). He adopts a highly-interdisciplinary approach to research, utilising a range of techniques including numerical simulations, laboratory (high-speed camera) experiments and mathematical modelling, usually in combination. Specific application areas of interest include microfluidics, inkjet and biomaterial printing, additive manufacture, aerosols (especially generation), infectious disease transmission (airborne and droplet) and environmentally-friendly crop sprays.

Examples of past and current research include:

  • Internal flows in coalescing droplets (PhD thesis);
  • Droplet splashing;
  • Sedimentation of colloidal suspensions (MSc thesis);
  • Binary droplet collisions.

Research Groups