Full Professor

Bert Blocken

How can it be that mathematics, being after all a product of human thought independent of experience, is so admirably adapted to the objects of reality?” (Albert Einstein)

Group / Unit
Building Physics
Department / Section
The Built Environment
Floor / room

Research Profile

Bert Blocken is a Belgian national and a Civil Engineer holding a PhD in Civil Engineering / Building Physics from KU Leuven in Belgium. He is a Full Professor at the Department of the Built Environment at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) in the Netherlands and a part-time Full Professor at the Department of Civil Engineering at KU Leuven in Belgium. His areas of expertise are urban physics, wind engineering & sports aerodynamics. His research activities include both basic and applied research. The methods applied are numerical simulation with Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), atmospheric boundary layer wind tunnel testing and field experimentation. The basic research is mainly focused on CFD grid generation, wall function development and analysis of basic flow phenomena. The applied research includes topics of high societal relevance and impact such as climate adaptation of buildings and cities, air pollution, wind energy and important aerodynamic effects in cycling that can be decisive in terms of winning or losing the race.

Academic Background

Bert Blocken obtained his MSc (with great distinction) in Civil Engineering from KU Leuven, where he also received his PhD in Building Physics. In addition to his work at TU/e, Bert is a part-time Full Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at KU Leuven in Belgium. He is the scientific director of the Eindhoven Atmospheric Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel facility. He also developed TU/e’s first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) ‘Sports & Building Aerodynamics’ on the Coursera platform. He received the 2013 Junior Award from the International Association of Wind Engineering and six best paper awards from the Elsevier ISI journal Building & Environment (2009, 2011, 2012) and at international conferences. The 2016 Academic Ranking of World Universities (Shanghai Ranking) & Elsevier list Bert as one of the 150 most cited researchers worldwide in both Civil Engineering and Energy Science & Engineering. He is listed as 2018 Highly Cited Researcher by Clarivate Analytics (Web of Science) for the production of multiple highly cited papers that rank in the top 1% by citations for field and year in the Web of Science Core Collection (https://hcr.clarivate.com). He is editor of the journal Building & Environment and associate editor of the Journal of Wind Engineering & Industrial Aerodynamics. Bert is also a member of the editorial board of the journals Building Simulation, Sports Engineering and the International Journal of Ventilation. He has acted as a reviewer for over 70 different ISI journals and has published 163 papers in international peer-reviewed journals. He is leading a research team of 5 senior researchers, 29 PhD students and 5 MSc students.

Educational Activities

  • Sports and building aerodynamics
  • Masterproject BPS A Research
  • Special Topics in environmental fluid mechanics
  • Graduation Project Building Physics and Services
  • BPS masterproject Design
  • Urban Physics: wind, acoustics, insolation and precipitation

Ancillary Activities

  • Member Task Committee on Environmental Wind Engineering, Subcommittee on Wind-driven Rain Effects, American Society of Civil Engineers
  • Editor Journal Building & Environment, Elsevier
  • Expert reviewer, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)
  • Guest lecturer and joint coordinator, International Urban Physics Winter & Summer Schools
  • Part-time full professor, Leuven University, Flanders, Belgium
  • Chairman of Task Committee on Computer-Aided Wind Engineering, American Society of Civil Engineers
  • Guest lecturer, ETH Zürich, Switzerland
  • Reviewer, 44 ISI journals in environmental modelling, wind engineering, building physics, hydrology, earth sciences, agricultural engineering
  • Reviewer, STW Open Technology Program
  • Committee member, Research Fund - Flanders (FWO-Flanders)
  • Member Editorial Board, ISI Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics
  • Commission Member, Level Acoustics
  • Member Editorial Board, ISI Journal Building and Environment
  • Contributing Author, ASHRAE Handbook of Fundamentals (incl. revisions)
  • Expert reviewer Strategic Research Funding, City University of Hong Kong
  • Associate Editor tijdschrift Journal of Wind Engineering & Industrial Aerodynamics, Elsevier
  • Expert reviewer for industrial, PhD and postdoc grants and scholarships, IWT-Flanders