Bristol academic honoured by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Press release issued: 2 August 2011
Professor Martin Lowson in the Department of Aerospace Engineering has been presented with the prestigious American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Aeroacoustics Award.
This award was established in 1973 and is presented for an outstanding technical or scientific achievement resulting from an individual’s contribution to the field of aircraft community noise reduction.
The award was presented to Martin at an awards banquet at the 17th AIAA/CEAS Aeroacoustics Conference, USA in June.
Among Martin’s many accomplishments recognised by the AIAA are his 1965 paper from which the basic theory for accelerated sources was derived, leading him to design quiet blade machinery; his papers in 1969 and 1970 which significantly increased the understanding of noise generation and reduction in compressors and helicopter rotors.
He was also Chief Engineer for Westland’s BERP rotor blade, which was the basis for winning the absolute world speed record for helicopters in 1986, and for new rotor systems for the Lynx and EH-101 helicopters.
His research at the University’s Department of Aerospace Engineering led to a way to remove the whistle from wind turbines, and the last undergraduate project he supervised led to recognition of the crucial significance of the tunnel noise environment on aerodynamic force measurements at low Reynolds number.
In addition to his work in aeroacoustics, Martin is the founder and President of ULTra PRT – formed as a University of Bristol spin-out in 1995 and which developed the ULTra (Urban Light Transportation) driverless personal transport system now linking Heathrow Terminal 5 with its business car park. ULTra promises to deliver rapid, environmentally friendly, sustainable mass transportation to urban areas in ongoing projects around the world.
At Bristol University, Professor Lowson held the Sir George White Chair in Aeronautical Engineering and was Head of the Department of Aerospace Engineering from 1986 to 2000.
He is an AIAA Fellow and Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, the Acoustical Society of America, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Chartered Institute of Transport.
Previous accolades include the 2001 Altran Prize for Innovations to Improve Urban Quality of Life; the 1997 British Wind Energy Association’s Award for Research; the 1994 Queen’s Award for Technology; and the 1992 Royal Aeronautical Society’s Busk Prize for the best paper in aerodynamics.