Liverpool Hope Logo
Find Your Course

New kit for Geography and Environmental Science department

A research grant awarded to Lecturer in Geography and Environmental Science Dr Thomas Smyth has been used to purchase a new important piece of equipment for the department.

The Royal Society presented Dr Smyth with £11,500 for his research into understanding physical changes in sand dunes.

Dr Smyth explained: “The aim is to investigate the relationship between wind flow and topographic change utilising a freely available computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model. The anticipated outcome is that using the freely available CFD software, land managers of coastal dunes can predict and understand wind-driven erosion at the sites they manage.”

In order to facilitate the research, the grant money has been spent on purchasing differential global positioning system equipment (DGPS). This will be used primarily for research to measure sand dune and beach change. However, second year Geography and Environmental Science students will, be trained and gain experience using the equipment, along with students on the Ecology and Environmental Management MSc.

Dr Smyth said: “Due to the instrument's ability to accurately measure location to sub-centimetre accuracy its potential use within the department is far-reaching, particularly with regards geomorphology, natural hazards and geographic information systems research.

“This equipment provides the tools for members of staff at Hope to lead and produce world-class research on beach and sand dune dynamics. These grants strengthen coastal geomorphology research at Hope, increasing the pool of resources available and providing clear research aims for the next three years.”

Dr Smyth has also recently received funding from the British Geomorphological Society and the Manchester Geographical Society. The former will fund research into understanding blowout evolution in a ‘stabilised’ dune landscape, while the latter will enable a study into the impact of Christmas tree ‘recycling’ on coastal sand dune morphology.

Published on 25/05/2018