ASCE has honored Fotis Sotiropoulos, Ph.D., M.ASCE, with the 2017 Hunter Rouse Hydraulic Engineering Award for his leadership in waterways research and application and for generating a quantum leap forward in the development and application of computational fluid dynamics for waterways.
Sotiropoulos’ work as presented in his 2015 paper “Hydraulics in the Era of Exponentially Growing Computer Power.” published in the Journal of Hydraulics Research, is graphic evidence of his brilliance and impact on the field of hydraulics and waterways. This work will surely set the standard for the treatment of the modeling of riverine flows, including sediment transport and meandering, for decades to come.
His specific contributions can be encapsulated in six areas:
1. New computational tools for simulating flow and transport phenomena in waterways
2. Physics of turbulence past hydraulic structures and in meandering streams
3. Physics of sediment transport and morphodynamics
4. Data-driven simulations of turbulence and transport phenomena in real-life waterways
5. Enabling simulation-based hydraulic engineering design and flooding hazard risk assessment and mitigation with large-eddy simulation (LES)
6. Contributions in the energy/water/sediment nexus
In effect, through this study Sotiropoulos has dramatically raised the bar for what innovative research in hydraulic engineering should look like, and the extent to which modern computational tools coupled with strong physical insight can advance the field and be put to use in solving important real-world problems.
The Hunter Rouse Hydraulic Engineering Award is presented, upon recommendation of the Executive Committee of the Environmental and Water Resources Institute Hydraulics and Waterways Council, to a distinguished person who will deliver the Hunter Rouse Hydraulic Engineering Lecture at an appropriate meeting of the Society.