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Research interests


Dr Cleaver is a lecturer in Aerospace Engineering in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. David started studying for a MEng in Aerospace Engineering in 2003, before going onto start a PhD in the field of experimental unsteady aerodynamics in 2007. On graduation he was employed on grants for the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research and US Office of Naval Research as a post-doctoral researcher before being awarded a Lectureship in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bath in 2012.



David's primary research field is Unsteady Aerodynamics. This is an exciting and novel research area which attempts to move beyond classic 'steady-state' aerodynamics so as to improve the efficiency of all forms of fluid dynamic device, from aircraft to gas turbines. In essence, all aero/ fluid dynamic problems are actually unsteady (variation with time) aerodynamic problems, but are usually assumed to be steady (constant with time). This gap in understanding not only leads to inaccuracy but also lost opportunities. He currently works on EPSRC projects with Airbus, Siemens and computational researchers at the University of Southampton to exploit the opportunities of unsteady aerodynamics. 

In addition, he is part of a small but fast growing and dynamic group investigating Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). In particular probabilistic autonomy for UAS.



Willing to supervise PhD

Unsteady Aerodynamics of Wings in Extreme Conditions
Probabilistic Autonomy for Unmanned Aircraft Systems

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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2014 2021

Methods and Experiments for Novel Rotorcraft

Du Bois, J. & Cleaver, D.


Project: Research council

Aerospace engineering
Engineering research
Gas turbines

Future Unmanned Aerial Systems Traffic Management (UTM)

Cleaver, D., Du Bois, J. & Iravani, P.


Project: Central government, health and local authorities

IAA Travel Award

Cleaver, D.


Project: Research council

Research Output 2009 2019

Unsteady Lift and Moment of a Periodically Plunging Airfoil

Chiereghin, N., Cleaver, D. & Gursul, I., 1 Jan 2019, In : AIAA Journal. 57, 1, p. 208-222

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Velocity measurement
Vortex flow

Closed loop position and pre-stress control for a morphing aircraft wing with distributed multi-axis pneumatic actuation

Zhou, H., Plummer, A. & Cleaver, D., 14 Sep 2018, BATH/ASME 2018 Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control, FPMC 2018. American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), p. V001T01A031 7 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Lift reduction by counter flowing wall jets

Al-Battal, N. H., Cleaver, D. J. & Gursul, I., 1 Jul 2018, In : Aerospace Science and Technology. 78, p. 682-695 14 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Blow molding
Angle of attack
Velocity measurement


Aerodynamics Of Biplane And Tandem Wings At Low Reynolds Numbers

Author: Jones, R., 6 May 2016

Supervisor: Gursul, I. (Supervisor) & Cleaver, D. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


Flow Control for Loads Control

Author: Al-Battal, N., 13 Feb 2019

Supervisor: Gursul, I. (Supervisor) & Cleaver, D. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD