We are very proud to announce that Profs. Paolo Luzzatto-Fegiz and Eckart Meiburg have been awarded a grant from the NSF (National Science Foundation) and CASIS (Center for the Advancement of Science in Space) to perform fluid dynamics experiments on the International Space Station with the goal of developing next-generation models of sediment transport. Accurate sediment models are essential to predict the environmental dynamics of lakes, estuaries, the coastal ocean, fisheries, and benthic habitats, and they play a central role in hydrocarbon exploration. However, sediment can display extremely complex mechanics resulting from strong cohesive and adhesive forces between individual particles. These forces are obscured by the effects of gravity at the laboratory scale, making it difficult to measure them in an Earth-bound setting. The NSF-CASIS grant will support accurate measurements in space-based experiments, as well as their implementation in state-of-the-art computational codes, enabling vast improvements in the accuracy of environmental models.
Read the full report by Sonia Fernandez and Andrea Estrada from UCSB's Office of Public Affairs and Communication here!