Dr Ben Evans is a Senior Lecturer in Aerospace Engineering and sits on the design team for the BLOODHOUND SSC Land Speed Record project. Dr Evans's research interests range from computational shape optimisation and high speed aerodynamic modelling to molecular gas dynamics simulation. He also has interests in engineering public engagement and engineering education.

Dr Evans is a director of the Engineering Education Scheme in Wales (EESW) and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Read more about Dr Ben Evans here.

Areas of Expertise

  • High speed aerodynamics
  • computational fluid dynamics
  • molecular gas dynamics
  • optimisation
  • engineering education and public engagement


  1. & A novel implementation of computational aerodynamic shape optimisation using Modified Cuckoo Search. Applied Mathematical Modelling 40(7-8), 4543-4559.
  2. & Discrete Boundary Smoothing using Control Node Parameterisation for Aerodynamic Shape Optimisation. Applied Mathematical Modelling
  3. & Solid particle erosion protection for the BLOODHOUND SSC front wheel arches. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part L: Journal of Materials: Design and Applications
  4. & Aerodynamic optimisation of the rear wheel fairing of the land speed record vehicle BLOODHOUND SSC. Aeronautical Journal 120(1228), 930-955.
  5. & Enhanced flow visualisation of complex aerodynamic phenomena using automatic stream surface seeding with application to the BLOODHOUND SSC Land Speed Record vehicle. The Aeronautical Journal 120(1226), 547-571.

See more...


  • EG-M90 Advanced Aerodynamics

    This module is intended to extend the theory of EG-293 Aerodynamics & EG-335 Gas Dynamics and apply it in the context of aerodynamic design across a range of length scales and Mach number. A number of case studies will be used to explore the concepts of aerodynamic design ranging from subsonic civilian aircraft to aerodynamic design in nature and hypersonic space vehicles. The course is split into four sections: subsonic, transonic, supersonic and hypersonic. By the end of the course students should have developed a good understanding of why aerospace vehicle operating in these different speed regimes with varying mission objectives look the way do from an aerodynamic perspective.

  • EGA302A Aerospace Engineering Design 3

    The module is a group design project for level 3 aerospace engineering students. Students are required to design an aerospace vehicle from an initial set of mission requirements and constraints through concept design to detailed design and flight testing. It requires students to draw on knowledge from a range of modules across the aerospace engineering course. Each student will specialise in one of six areas: aerodynamics, structure, materials & propulsion, weight& performance, control systems or dynamics & stability. Groups will be required to submit a series of design reports at each stage in the design process as well as deliver presentations to the rest of the class. Each student will also take a turn acting as chief engineer and a reflective essay is required after the student's time as the chief engineer. By the end of the module students should have an understanding of the process and complexities involved in designing an aerospace vehicle from scratch and appreciate the multi-disciplinary nature of this task.

  • EGH302 Aerospace Engineering Design

    The module consists of a team-based design project within the aerospace manufacturing sector. Projects will involve both conceptual, preliminary and detailed multi-disciplinary design of an aerospace component or structure from initial design specification. Students will be required to produce design submissions including the evaluation of critical detail design aspects, and an assessment of manufacturing and cost implications. Each student will be required to take responsibility for particular aspects of the design during the process, while working alongside other students and other Company staff as part of a multi-disciplinary team

  • EGH303 Aerodynamics

    This module extends the previous coverage of Fluid Mechanics and covers the fundamental equations governing aerodynamics and their application to aeronautical systems. Various analytical and computational methods of solving aerodynamic problems are covered. This will lead on to considerations of stability and instability in aircraft flight.

  • EGTX23 Engineering in Texas and CAE for Texas Exchange Aerospace Engineers (replacing EG-264)


  • A Novel Mesh-Based Framework for Computational Aerodynamic Shape Optimisation (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Prof Oubay Hassan
  • Development of free surface hydrodynamic modelling and optimisation techniques with application to high speed motor boat hull design (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Dr Ian Mabbett
  • Research to generate and develop CFD and experimental analysis of fluidic nozzles (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Dr Nick Croft
  • 'Novel Design and Manufacturing approaches in the context of the land speed record vehicle, BLOODHOUND SCC' (awarded 2016)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Prof Johann Sienz
  • 'Development of heat transfer modelling techniques for solving complex industrial problems supported with experimentation' (awarded 2015)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Prof Johann Sienz
    Other supervisor: Dr David Bould

Key Grants and Projects

  • Simulation and prediction of transient shock waves under high acceleration and deceleration conditions applied to the BLOODHOUND SSC Land Speed Record vehicle 2016 - 2017

    Collaboration with South Africa, CSIR & University of the Witwatersrand, £4.6K

  • TATA Steel Award for Outstanding Impact in Commerce and Industry 2014

    Improved Aerodynamic Design Process for the Aerospace Industry through the Application of Unstructured Mesh Technology, Swansea University Impact Awards

  • Mike Crisfield Prize in Computational Mechanics 2006

    , Association of Computational Mechanics in Engineering conference

  • Fujitsu PhD Scholarship 2013

    Computational aerodynamic design optimisation for complex geometries, £55.5K

  • 4 x BLOODHOUND Education Programme Public Engagement small grants 2013

    Application of Additive Layer Manufacturing (ALM) to the BLOODHOUND SSC Numerical modelling in MATLAB for BLOODHOUND SSC performance predictions CFD in the design of BLOODHOUND SSC Schools-based STEM engagement based on BLOODHOUND SSC, £20K

  • Ingenious public engagement grant - Royal Academy of Engineering 2012

    STEM schools-based public engagement based on the BLOODHOUND SSC, £21.76K

  • Pathways to Impact Grant, Swansea University 2012

    , £21K

  • Swansea Academy of Learning and Teaching grant 2010

    Enhancing undergraduate teaching using social media: Teach by Twitter, Value: £2.2K

Career History

Start Date End Date Position Held Location
2011 Present Senior Lecturer in Aerospace Engineering Swansea University
2007 Present Engineering Design Team for the BLOODHOUND Supersonic Car Swansea University
2007 2011 Senior Research Assistant Swansea University
2004 2008 PhD in Computational Fluid Dynamics Swansea University
2000 2004 MEng in Aerospace and Aerothermal Engineering Jesus College, Cambridge University

Invited Presentations, Lectures and Conferences

Date Description
June 2016 Oxford e-Research Centre invited lecture
May 2016 Invited Plenary Lecture: ParCFD16 (Kobe, Japan) ‘The use of CFD in the design of BLOODHOUND SSC, an engineering adventure'
March 2014 Basque Center for Applied Mathematical Modelling Turbomachinery and Aerodynamic Shape Optimisation Workshop
September 2014 M.I.T. Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering
September 2012 Rolls Royce 10th Anniversary ADOS Conference
May 2011 Oxford University Engineering Society
March 2011 Institute of Mathematics Invited Lecture
September 2010 MathWorks – MATLAB Virtual Conference
June 2010 Cheltenham Science Festival
April 2010 Intel HPC Symposium – Keynote Speaker
November 2009 Cambridge Engineering Society Lecture
November 2009 World Motorsport Symposium
June 2009 Cheltenham Science Festival
March 2009 Mexican Automotive Association Congress Keynote Lecture
February 2009 Singapore Institute of High Performance Computing invited lecture

Public Engagements

AerOpt – Aerodynamic Design Optimisation Software


Click here to download a free aerodynamic design toolkit developed by researchers at Swansea University’s College of Engineering.  To use the software, simply click on the link, unzip the download file which contains a User Guide and executable which will run on any Windows machine.

English version

Ferswiwn Cymraeg

If you have any problems or queries, please contact Dr Ben Evans: b.j.evans@swansea.ac.uk

Dr Evans is heavily involved in connecting College of Engineering research with the general public and with schools in particular.  He has developed a schools show that visits schools across the UK throughout the academic year based on communicating the science behind the BLOODHOUND SSC Land Speed Record attempt.  His team also delivers workshops in which school pupils design, build and test their own rocket propelled cars.


Dr Evans demonstrating supersonic flow in the style of Indiana Jones on a school visit.

School Show

Pupils getting involved in a BLOODHOUND Schools Show

Rocket Car

Test firing of rocket car designed and built by pupils from Bishopston Comprehensive School, Swansea.

For more information on any of these activities please email bloodhoundforschools@swansea.ac.uk

Invited talks

Dr Evans also regularly gives public talks and lectures about his research.  He has been invited to speak at Cheltenham Science Festival on topics ranging from Land Speed Record racing to fuel efficient flying, Cardiff Science Festival and British Science Association events amongst many others.  If you would like to contact Dr Evans about speaking engagements please email him directly at b.j.evans@swansea.ac.uk or contact him on Twitter @DrBenEvans


Dr Evans and his team have partnered with engineers based at M.I.T. in the USA to develop a web-based interactive CFD solver called aerodoodle.  This is primarily an education tool to help people understand the capabilities of CFD solvers in a fun and interactive environment on the web.


Simulation of the flow around a simple shape using aerodoodle.swan.ac.uk 

Engineering Education

Dr Evans has research interests in engineering education practice.  He has undertaken projects to investigate the impact of the use of integrating a variety of social media into undergraduate education with publications in the HEA Engineering Education journal.

Interactive teaching

Incorporation of YouTube and Twitter into the HE learning and teaching environment.

Computational Fluid Dynamics

Dr Evans’ research in computational fluid dynamics has been largely in high speed aerodynamics and particle entrainment with application to the BLOODHOUND SSC Land Speed Record vehicle.  His interests and publications in this area range from numerical methods for solution of the compressible Navier-Stokes equations to data visualisation techniques and enhanced post-processing of CFD datasets for use in aerodynamic design.  Much of Dr Evans’s research makes use of the Swansea University FLITE3D CFD system and high performance parallel computing.

Wake Image

Flow visualisation of CFD results in the wake flow downstream of BLOODHOUND SSC airbrakes.

Particle impact

Predicted areas of high intensity particle impact on the underside of the BLOODHOUND SSC vehicle.

Pressure Distribution

Mach 1.3 pressure distribution and streamribbons over a design configuration of BLOODHOUND SSC.

Unstructured hybrid mesh

Slice through an unstructured hybrid ‘mesh’ used for CFD simulations.

High Performance Computing

Dr Evans and a student with the College of Engineering High Performance Computing clusters.

Molecular Gas Dynamics

Dr Evans has interests in the use of finite element methods for the solution of the governing equation of molecular gas dynamics, the Boltzmann kinetic equation.  This non-continuum approach to studying fluids considers a gas at the molecular level before trying to recover macroscopic gas properties.  Applications his work in this area have included hypersonic rarefied gas flows over re-entry space vehicles and microscale modelling.


Molecular Gas Dynamics involves the consideration of a fluid in terms of the motion of the individual molecules

Vehicle Re-entry

Simulation of a re-entry vehicle at high altitude travelling at Mach 25

Shape Optimisation

Dr Evans’s work on the design of the BLOODHOUND SSC land speed record vehicle has led to pioneering research in the field of aerodynamic design optimisation utilising methods including Design of Experiments, reduced order modelling, novel mesh movement techniques and genetic optimisation algorithms.


Parameterisation of a complex geometry for an optimisaton study.

Control Nodes

Mesh-based optimisation using ‘control nodes’.

Mesh Movement

Control node mesh movement to define the optimum geometry for a supersonic jet air intake.