Lorena Barba, Ph.D.
Adjunct Research Professor
Ph.D., California Institute of Technology
Fluid dynamics * Novel computer architectures * Development of fast and efficient algorithms * Particle methods used for fluid simulation
Professor Barba is a computational scientist and a fluid dynamicist. That is, she does research by means of computer simulations, studies and develops numerical methods, and the types of applications she is most interested in have to do with problems of fluid flow.
One of the challenges in fluid simulation continues to be the need to straddle many scales. New research in computational methods is still sorely needed to build schemes that are intelligent, detect the scales of the problem, and adapt. Moreover, we need programs that are hardware-aware.
A new-wave in computational fluid and solid mechanics is the development of meshfree methods. They promise to offer solutions to many enduring problems, such as dealing with discontinuities such as cracks and simulating flows with low numerical diffusion. Prof Barba believes that, in addition, meshfree methods should be especially well-suited to exploit the new hardware technologies that are revolutionizing the scene. They should also more naturally offer ways to deal with multiple scales in a problem, and to construct adaptive schemes.
Meshfree methods also offer enormous potential for the simulation of problems involving moving and/or deformable boundaries, such as happens in most biological applications. In these problems, the need to adapt or regenerate a mesh is a huge burden for the computation and removing this burden will allow the solution of larger problems, in less time, and in smaller computers. Here, as in multi-scale problems, Prof Barba believes we should also discover ways to combine continuum and particle approaches, hence build and test hybrid methods.
A complete list of publications by year.
A complete list of publications by number of citations.