Prof Tracie Barber is a UNSW fluid dynamics researcher with a background in aerospace engineering and a focus in the last ten years on biomedical and microfluidic applications.
My work has impact in the fields of fluid dynamics via fundamental understanding gained, and also in a more applied sense, to direct clinical situations. I work with both CFD (computational fluid dynamics) and experimental methods, mostly laser based. My group conducts translational work that builds on fundamental findings in flow physics (for example our work on how turbulence varies spatially and temporally in a pulsatile, stenosed arterial flow) to apply this insight to real problems (for example, how an over-sized stent causes turbulence which can then cause re-stenosis).
We work locally with a number of Australian hospitals and also make use of our fluid dynamics and microfluidics expertise to solve a range of industrial and fundamental science problems.
Members of my team are often asked to speak at medical conferences, where we describe how our engineering skills and insight is used to solve clinical problems. I have over 200 refereed publications across both biomedical journals (including IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, Journal of Controlled Release and Annals of Biomedical Engineering) and also within the top three journals in fluid mechanics (Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Physics of Fluids and Experiments in Fluids. 23 PhD students have been successfully supervised to completion, with many going on to find high-profile international employment and since 2004 I have supervised over 250 final year project (Honours) students. For ten years I managed the laboratories in the School of Mechanical Engineering, UNSW and I am currently the Chair of the Laboratory Management Committee for the School.
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