Portfolio: Wind Engineering

Scope of Services

Guido Morgenthal’s experience in the aerodynamic analysis of long-span bridges goes back to his PhD at Cambridge University, as part of which he developed the Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) solver VXflow.

The services of our firm in wind engineering today cover a wide range of numerical and experimental techniques:

  • Analysis of Vortex-induced (VIV) and buffeting response of bridges, in final and erection condition
  • Design of damping solutions to mitigate wind-induced response
  • Investigation of guide vanes for mitgating VIV of bridges
  • Prediction of aeroelastic instabilities such as flutter and galloping
  • Analysis of the efficiency of wind shield on bridge decks, including design of shields; Prediction of increased load on bridge deck and effect on vehicle overturning effects
  • Shape optimisation of bridge decks and high-rise buildings based on performance criteria for wind excitation
  • Modelling of energy harvesting devices based on fluttering membranes (with Stanford University)

Shown below is a visualisation of a time-history buffeting simulation of Stonecutters Bridge during Erection.


Our unique VXflow solver is based on the Vortex Particle Method and allows a computationally efficient simulation of bluff body aerodynamics problems such as flow around bridge decks of arbitrarily complex geometry. After extensive recent developments it now provides the following features:

  • Multi-slice formulation for modelling the aerodynamics of line-like structures such as long-span bridge decks with varying cross sectional shape
  • Fluid-Structure Interaction simulations based on a full or a modal representation of the structural dynamics
  • Adaptive methods for balancing accuracy and efficiency
  • Solver for flexible structures such as membranes
  • Modelling of fluctuating inflow conditions to account for atmospheric turbulence e.g. for buffeting analyses.
  • Ported to GPU based on modern OpenCL language for high efficiency
  • High efficiency flow visualisation post processing tool VXviz plus other post processing in VXpost

Shown below are some images and videos showcasing the capabilities of VXflow.


Some of the projects to which we have contributed wind engineering expertise are:

  • Mersey Gateway Crossing, UK
  • Misc. masts and towers
  • Stonecutters Bridge, Hong Kong, China
  • Sutong Bridge, China
  • Dolsan Watah Bridge, Korea
  • Chenab Bridge, India
  • Bukhang Bridge, Korea
  • Strelasundbrücke, Germany
  • Orinoco Bridge, Venezuela
  • Foot and Cycle Bridge Kehl-Strasbourg, Germany/France
  • River Neath Viaduct, UK

Some of this work has been carried out whilst working at Leonhardt Andrä und Partner, Stuttgart and AECOM, Hong Kong.

Related Scientific Publications:

  • Morgenthal G., Sanchez-Corriols, A., Bendig, B., A GPU-accelerated Pseudo-3D Vortex Method for Aerodynamic Analysis, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics, 125 (2014), pp. 69-80
  • Sanchez Corriols, A, Morgenthal G., Vortex-Induced Vibrations on Cross Sections in Tandem Arrangement, Structural Engineering International,  02/2014; 24(1)
  • McRobie, A., Morgenthal, G., Abrams, D., Prendergast, J., Parallels between the wind excitation and the crowd loading of bridges, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A, 371 (2013), pp. 20120430-20120446
  • Park, J., Morgenthal, G., Kim, K., Kwon, S., Law, K., Power Evaluation for Flutter-based Electromagnetic Energy Harvester Using CFD Simulations, Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures, 9/2014; vol. 25, pp. 18001812
  • Morgenthal, G.,Yamasaki, Y., (Aerodynamic) Behaviour of Very Long Cable-stayed Bridges During Erection, Proceedings of ICE – Bridge Engineering, 163 (2010), pp. 213-224
  • Morgenthal, G., Walther, J.-H., An Immersed Interface Method for the Vortex-In-Cell Algorithm, Computers and Structures, 85 (2007), pp. 712-726
  • Morgenthal, G., Kovacs, I., Saul, R., Analysis of Aeroelastic Bridge Deck Response to Natural Wind, Structural Engineering International, 15 (2005), pp. 232-235
  • Morgenthal, G., Advances in Numerical Bridge Aerodynamics and Recent Applications, Structural Engineering International, 15 (2005), pp. 95-100