Altair appoint Dr Paul Stewart vice president of virtual wind tunnel solutions

Dr Paul Stewart has joined Altair as VP, Automotive Aerodynamics Modelling and Visualisation. He will lead Altair’s Virtual Wind Tunnel solutions operations, focusing on fluid dynamics for ground transportation vehicle design. Dr Stewart was most recently at Exa Corporation, acquired by Dassault Systemes in 2017, where he was Senior Director, Design and Visualisation.

During his 30-year career developing design technologies, Dr Stewart has pioneered the application of shape morphing to automotive aerodynamic design. He holds a PhD in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from the University of Michigan, where his doctoral research on the mathematics of faired curves and surfaces for vehicle design was sponsored by Chrysler. 

Industry positions have included 15 years at Exa and 11 years at Ford Research. Professional accomplishments of note include a process-driven meshing and parametric shape modification tool, ground-breaking work using statistical analysis and response surfaces to understand and optimise the aerodynamic performance of styling surfaces parameterised with free-form character features, and technologies to better visualise and understand complex three-dimensional fluid flow including immersive virtual 3D visualisation.

‘While working on the deep mathematics underlying advanced computational fluid dynamics (CFD), it has always been a priority to support the design studio’, said Dr Stewart. ‘Successfully applying interdisciplinary simulation can help designers in their mission to capture the OEM’s brand and the vehicle buyer’s imagination.’

With the unprecedented capabilities of CFD software enabled by High-Performance Computing, simulation-driven design for market-leading aerodynamic performance is achievable with savings in time and cost versus physical testing. In his new role, Dr Stewart will help broaden Altair’s footprint within vehicle development processes from up-stream design interaction and functionality to downstream integration with Altair’s solvers in the HyperWorks suite for vehicle dynamics and structural optimisation.

James Dagg, CTO, modelling and visualisation at Altair, states that ‘Bringing Paul on board underscores Altair’s commitment and continued investment in the rapidly growing CFD market. Building on the commercial release of Altair’s GPU based Lattice Boltzmann Method (LBM) technology platform for CFD, which offers unprecedented turn-around-time and accuracy at a fraction of the cost of other LBM and Navier-Stokes based CFD technologies, Paul will help guide further optimisation of Altair’s process tools’.


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