Massive Open Online Course on Sports & Building CFD Fluid Mechanics

Learn who will win the race and who will trip in the city breeze.

This week, a massive open online course (MOOC) about how CFD and fluid mechanics affects both sports and busy city buildings began. The course will be conducted by Professor Bert Blocken of Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). In it, Prof. Blocken will outline both wind tunnel technology and the use of CFD analysis software by ANSYS.

In this course, students will learn how the shape of a bike or car can influence performance and who wins a race using bluff body aerodynamics. Additionally, students will learn how the placement and shape of buildings will affect the air flow around the buildings and on street level.

The target audience is individuals interested in wind engineering, sports engineering, urban physics, simulation and aerodynamics. These students will look into the common misconceptions and counter-intuitive physics often seen within fluid dynamics. This can assist both building design and athletic performance.

The first half of the course will focus on the basics of CFD, fluid mechanics and wind-tunnels. A higher education will help students understand the more complex math and governing equations covered in the course and allow for a more complete experience. However, for a hobby/interest level understanding of the topic a high school education will allow you to follow along with the course basics.

In the latter half of the course, the focus will move to applications such as buildings, cycling and sprinting. This will naturally appeal to a wider audience, however, participants with a greater understanding of physics, math and fluid mechanics will gain more from this experience.

The six-week course is set to begin on April 28th and will require about 4-6 hours of work a week to complete. The work will consist of eight 15-minute video lectures per week, online discussion (Q & A), readings, an exam and a project where students evaluate scientific papers. Students that successfully compete the course will be awarded a certificate. To sign up for the course follow this link.

Source Coursera & ANSYS

Written by

Shawn Wasserman

For over 10 years, Shawn Wasserman has informed, inspired and engaged the engineering community through online content. As a senior writer at WTWH media, he produces branded content to help engineers streamline their operations via new tools, technologies and software. While a senior editor at, Shawn wrote stories about CAE, simulation, PLM, CAD, IoT, AI and more. During his time as the blog manager at Ansys, Shawn produced content featuring stories, tips, tricks and interesting use cases for CAE technologies. Shawn holds a master’s degree in Bioengineering from the University of Guelph and an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Waterloo.