Olivia Wood

I have a strong interest in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and fluid mechanics in general. After taking Dr Jianfei Xie's CFD module, I decided to take on a project with him as his lectures were very interesting and intellectually stimulating.

For my final year project I had prior CFD knowledge using Star CCM+, however I chose to teach myself Ansys Fluent in order to broaden my software skills set. I will be staying on at the University of Derby after graduation to complete a Masters course - MSc Mechanical and Manufacturing.

I plan to complete another CFD project; a continuation of this project or a completely different area of CFD to increase my capabilities for CFD graduate jobs.

Active Control of the Climate in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)


In any health care setting, it is important to monitor and control airflow and ventilation. Airborne disease and infection pose as a potential fatality to already vulnerable individuals. Bacterial transfer can be increased with certain airflow patterns which involve lots of recirculation, which is why ventilation is important in this type of environment so that recirculation can be reduced where possible. Main research aims:


Using Ansys Fluent, CFD simulations were carried out on a geometry modelled on SolidWorks. A mesh independence was first conducted, using a coarse mesh throughout the domain, before mesh density was increased in all major zones: inlet, outlet, walls incubator lid, light and the radiator.

Heat transfer and air flows are modelled as air enters the domain through the inlet air-con (AC) unit, and passes over foremost geometries.


Eddies are most prominent and turbulent near boundaries such as the incubator lid, especially in the corners, near the ceiling and outlet wall as expected. Recirculation occurs when air does not exit through the outlet in the first cycle and circles back toward the inlet where air mixes again and eventually leaves the domain at the outlet vent.


The flow physics of the NICU is predicted based on the Navier-stokes conservation equations for continuity, momentum, and energy for incompressible flows.

Download Olivia's full project report (PDF) (this pdf document is not fully accessible but an overview of the contents within it can be viewed via the content on this page)

Student Olivia Wood holding her dissertation

Olivia Wood
BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering

Outside of university, I enjoy yoga, cycling and self care. I feel proud to have completed a degree where I have been the only girl in my class for the majority of my course, and have performed well, hopefully acting as an inspiration to young girls considering this career path.