WELCOME! I’M MATT FU
I am a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Aerospace Engineering Department at Caltech. My research is in experimental and theoretical fluid mechanics under the supervision of Prof. John Dabiri. I try to take a novel multidisciplinary approach to tackle classical fluid problems. The research problems I am currently working on include:
Active and passive turbulent drag reduction
Novel flow measurement techniques and diagnostics
Measurements of high Reynolds number flows
POSTDOCTORAL SCHOLAR CALTECH
October 2019 - June 2020
POSTDOCTORAL SCHOLAR, STANFORD UNIVERSITY
July 2019 - October 2019
RESEARCH FELLOW IN FLUID MECHANICS, UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE
September 2018 - June 2019
POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCH ASSOCIATE, PRINCETON UNIVERSITY
A quick overview of past and ongoing research projects
TURBULENT FLOW CONTROL AND DRAG REDUCTION
Unconventional surfaces to modify and understand turbulent transport
There are many open questions surrounding the role of the wall boundary conditions in governing transport from the wall to the free stream. Specifically, this research seeks to establish how turbulent scalar and momentum transport are affected when the "no-slip" boundary condition is replaced with more generalized boundary conditions, including a "slip" surface. These results hopefully further our understanding of wall-turbulence interaction to better develop passive flow control surfaces to control drag or mixing. The current work utilizes Liquid-Infused Surface [LIS], Superhydrophobic Surfaces [SHS] and Slippery Liquid-Infused Porous Surfaces [SLIPS], which have been shown to reduce drag through this slip effect, and seeks to model how their surface morphology and lubricant properties affect the magnitude of their effective slip.
HIGH FIDELITY DIAGNOSTICS AND TURBULENCE AT HIGH REYNOLDS NUMBER
Revealing new physics with highly resolved experimental techniques
Conventional probes and sensors suffer from limited spatiotemporal resolutions. This is especially true in high Reynolds number flows or in the near-wall regions of wall-bounded flows. The availability of Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) technology enables mass-production of the next generation of sensors and diagnostics. Designing sensors at the micro and nanoscale not only enables significantly better spatiotemporal resolution but also unlocks previously unaccessible sensing modes
NOVEL SENSING MODES
Leveraging advanced manufacturing to create high-performance probes and new sensing modes
Elastic Filament Velocimetry [EFV] is a novel, highly anisotropic, strain-based method of sensing fluid velocity. It relies on a free-standing, electrically-conductive ribbon with nanoscale thickness. Drag from the passing liquid or gas deflects the nanoribbon, which is fixed at both ends, inducing an axial strain which can be measured as a resistance change. The small dimensions of the sensing element (1 mm long and 100 nanometers thick) mean that the sensitivity to passing fluid flow is viscously dominated, enabling sensitivity to both liquids and gases. The novelty of the EFV lies in the blending of form and function in a simple design. If the aspect ratio (length to thickness) is kept high, the nanoribbon can exhibit deflections of just a few microns, many orders of magnitude larger than the thickness but negligible compared to its length and width. While the circuitry is simple, typical strain gauges need to be mounted onto calibrated cantilevers or membranes giving them a larger footprint and more intricate construction. For EFV, the calibrated member and sensing elements are one and the same. EFV is closer in construction to a hot-wire anemometer, which is a technique that features no moving parts but involves complicated circuitry and lacks robustness. The result is a hybrid design and takes the best aspects of both sensing modes: the simplicity of design of a hotwire anemometer and the robust, inexpensive operation of a strain gauge.
OCEAN MIXING AND TRANSPORT
Understanding ocean mixing processes with the help of a novel scanning system.
The role of biogenic turbulence in scalar transport and ocean mixing, especially from aggregates of vertically migrating swimmers, is still a matter of significant debate. Quantifying the nature of this mixing requires that the entire flow field and the full range of mixing scales, from the size of the aggregate to below that of the individual animal, be resolved. While there have been significant advancements in the capability of volumetric velocimetry techniques, the spatial resolution often associated with these techniques is insufficient for exploring common species of vertically migrating swimmers. I'm developing a scanning particle image velocimetry apparatus for quantifying three-dimensional configurations of vertically migrating swimmers and their volumetric, three-component velocity fields and demonstrate its use on the vertical migrations of the brine shrimp Artemia salina.
PHD IN MECHANICAL AND AEROSPACE ENGINEERING, PRINCETON UNIVERSITY
September 2013 - September 2018
MA IN MECHANICAL AND AEROSPACE ENGINEERING, PRINCETON UNIVERSITY
BS IN MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, CALTECH
September 2009 - June 2013