Sunday, 4 September 2016


As of 1st September I will be working as a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow in the Department of Geography and Environmental Science at Liverpool Hope University. I'm working with some great colleagues and looking forward to meeting the students once term starts.

I've also published my first sole authored paper entitled 'A review of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) airflow modelling over aeolian landforms' in the journal Aeolian Research. It's available free to download using the link in this blog until mid-October so get clicking! 

Thursday, 5 November 2015

NEW ARTICLE: The dune effect on sand-transporting winds on Mars

Sand ripples on Mars (Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona)
Our latest article published in Nature Communications demonstrates that local dune topography exerts a strong influence on wind speed and direction above the surface of Mars. Ripple movement likely reflects steered wind direction for certain dune ridge shapes. These findings highlight the need to first model winds at high resolution before inferring regional wind patterns from ripple movement or dune orientations on the surface of Mars today.

 The full open access article is available here.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

World War I Shipwreck in the Irish Sea: Surveying

Multibeam data from the SS Polwell (source:

Surveying for our project investigating WWI shipwrecks in the Irish Sea is in full swing. Follow the teams progress here

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Snow Dunes.

Record snow fall made for an interesting field trip to the Provinceland dunes earlier this year. We knew New England had been cold, but leaving Adelaide in 42 C and arriving to -16 C in Boston was a shock to the system. Nevertheless we wrapped up, put our gear together and were fortunately rewarded with some dry, bright and (best of all) windy conditions.

Hope you enjoy the few snaps below from our two weeks in the snow. Thom.

Bowl blowout, Provinceland Dunes, Cape Cod, MA.

Instrumenting our first study site

Scraped dyke structure at Sandy Neck

Lots of sediment still being transported despite the snow
Overnight snow fall. Hey dude... wheres my anemometer?
Patrick wondering where the path went

Team photo!

Monday, 16 March 2015


Patrick Hesp's and my latest collaboration  'Aeolian dynamics of beach scraped ridge and dyke structures'  has just been published in Coastal Engineering. Free access to the article, without registration or sign up, is available until May 5, 2015 so get clicking!

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Investigating WW1 wrecks in the Irish Sea

A group of researchers from Ireland, Wales, Denmark and Australia have been awarded 15 days ship time on the Research Vessel Celtic Voyager by the Marine Institute (Ireland). The group led by Dr Ruth Plets (University of Ulster) aims to acquire high-resolution sonar and optical data which will be used for research into archaeological, biological and physical processes, 3D visualization and cultural heritage management of a number of World War 1 wrecks.

My primary role in the project will be to conduct computational fluid dynamic (CFD) modelling at select wreck sites with a view to understanding fluid flow, scouring and preservation issues, with the aim of creating effective management strategies.

Read the full article here

Example of flow patterns around a shipwreck generated using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) (image:Thomas Smyth)

Sunday, 7 December 2014

New Article!

Examples of wind flow steering over a foredune for three incident wind approaches

Chuffed to announce that my first article in collaboration with Patrick Hesp, Flow deflection over a foredune, is now available in press from Geomorphology. Patrick was the most cited author in my PhD thesis and its a real pleasure to be working with him here at Flinders. Here's to many more!