Professor Chris Baker CEng, FICE, FIHT, FHEA, FRMetS

Chris Baker

Department of Civil Engineering
Professor of Environmental Fluid Mechanics
Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education

Contact details

Telephone
+44 (0) 121 414 5067
Fax
+44 (0) 121 414 3675
Email
c.j.baker@bham.ac.uk
Address
Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education
Gisbert Kapp Building
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

Chris Baker graduated from his doctoral studies at the University of Cambridge, before beginning a Research Fellowship there at St Catharine’s College and the Department of Engineering. In the early 1980s he worked in the Aerodynamics Unit of British Rail Research in Derby, before moving to an academic position in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Nottingham.
He remained there till 1998 where he was a lecturer, reader and professor with research interests in vehicle aerodynamics, wind engineering, environmental fluid mechanics and agricultural aerodynamics. In 1998 he moved to the University of Birmingham as Professor of Environmental Fluid Mechanics in the School of Civil Engineering.

In the early years of the present century he was Director of Teaching in the newly formed School of Engineering and Deputy Head of School. From 2003 to 2008 he was Head of Civil Engineering and in 2008 served for a short time as Acting Head of the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences. He was the Director of the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education 2005-2104. He is currently undertaking a 30% secondment to the Transport systems Catapult Centre in Milton Keynes, as Science Director.

Qualifications

  • Certificate in Theological and Pastoral Studies, University of Nottingham, 1988
  • PhD, University of Cambridge, 1978
  • MA, University of Cambridge, 1978
  • BA Engineering, 1st Class with distinction, St Catharine’s College, University of Cambridge, 1975

Teaching

Teaching Programmes – on Civil Engineering programmes

Professor Baker has teaching interests in the general field of fluid mechanics, and has in the past lectured on most aspects of Hydraulic Engineering to undergraduates and postgraduates.

He currently lectures on the first year course on Introduction to Railway Engineering for Civil Engineering and Electrical Engineering students and the third year Civil Engineering course on Atmospheric Engineering. He also supervises fourth year individual research projects.

Postgraduate supervision

M Gallagher*  - Full scale measurements of train aerodynamic phenomena
J Morden - CFD calculations of train aerodynamic phenomena
I Obazele* - Agent based modelling of vehicle movement during extreme weather
A Hickman* - Air pollution at transport interchanges
F Bourriez - Debris flight in tornadoes
P Illiadis* - Freight train aerodynamics

PhD opportunities

Research

Research themes

  • Transport and Climate Change 
  • Vehicle Aerodynamics 
  • Wind Engineering 
  • Agricultural Aerodynamics 
  • Environmental Fluid Mechanics

Research Council Grants

EU grants

  • MOWE-IT (2012-2014) EU (2.4M€ - 125k€ to University of Birmingham)
  • Living RAIL (2012-2015) EU (1.3M€ - 109k€ to UoB)
  • LIFTRAIN (2016-2018) Marie Curie Fellowship (195 k€)

Industrial contracts

  • TRACCA Phase 2 (2014-2015) RSSB (£200k)
  • Testing of Class 345 vehicles for Crossrail, (2014-2015) Bombardier (£50k) 
  • Study of trains running through flood water (2014-2015) RSSB (£150k)
  • Improving lodging resistance in oats (2015-2018) Teagasc Walsh Fellowships (£80k)

Other activities

  • Member of BSI Loading Committee 525 and Chair of the Climate Codes sub group
  • Chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee of CISIT. International Campuson Safety and Intermodality in Transportation, Valenciennes, France
  • CEN working group on structural codes of practice associated with climate effects

Prof Baker was awarded the title of Fellow of the Wind Engineering Society in 1996. He has been a Keynote speaker at a number of recent Wind Engineering conferences including:

  • “Wind effects in the urban environment – considerations for human health, comfort and safety”, Keynote lecture, ISWE Tokyo, Japan, (2004)
  • “The overturning of road and rail vehicles in high winds”, Keynote Address Italian Wind Engineering Conference (2004)
  • “Wind Engineering – past, present and future”, Keynote lecture, Proceedings 4th European and African Regional Conference on Wind Engineering, Prague (2005)
  • “The overturning of road and rail vehicles in high winds”, Invited lecture, Asia Pacific Regional Conference on Wind Engineering, Seoul (2005)
  • “The flow field around trains”, Keynote Address, Bluff Body Aerodynamics and its Applications Conference, Milan (2008)
  • “Cross wind effects on road and rail vehicles”, IAVSD Symposium, Stockholm, Sweden, Keynote lecture (2009)
  • “The rail sector”, UNECE-UNCTAD Workshop on Climate Change Impacts on International Transport Networks, Geneva (2010)
  • “The design process for wind effects around simple buildings” Keynote lecture, International Conference on Wind Engineering, Amsterdam. (2011)
  • “The first international conference on wind engineering – a retrospective”, European and African Conference on Wind engineering, Keynote lecture, Cambridge (2013)
  • “Future Resilient Transport Networks”, Belfast Climate Week  2014
  • “The aerodynamics of trains”, Royal Aeronautical Society, London, 2014

Publications

Journal publications from 2012 onwards

  • C D F Rogers, C J Bouch, S Williams, A R G Barber, C J Baker, J R Bryson, D N Chapman, L Chapman, J Coaffee, I Jefferson and A D Quinn, 2012, “Resistance and Resilience – Paradigms for Critical Local Infrastructure”, Proceedings of the ICE - Municipal Engineer 165, 2, 73-83 http://dx.doi.org/10.1680/muen.11.00030
  • M. Anyala, J.B. Odoki and C.J. Baker, 2012, “Hierarchical asphalt pavement deterioration model for climate impact studies”, International Journal of Pavement Engineering, 15, 3, 251-266, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10298436.2012.687105
  • S Blenkinsop, Y Zhao, J Quinn, F Berryman, J Thornes, C Baker, H J Fowler, 2012, “Downscaling future wind hazard for SE London using the UKCP09 regional climate model ensemble”, 53, 141–156, http://dx.doi.org/10.3354/cr01091
  • P. Martinez-Vazquez, B. Kakimpa, M. Sterling, C.J. Baker, A.D. Quinn, P.J. Richards, J.S. Owen, 2012, “Pressure field of a rotating square plate with application to windborne debris", Wind and Structures, 15, 6, 527-547, http://dx.doi.org/10.12989/was.2012.15.6.509
  • C J Tomlinson, L Chapman, J E Thornes, C J Baker, T Prieto-Lopez, 2012, “Comparing night-time satellite land surface temperature from MODIS and ground measured air temperature across a conurbation”, Remote Sensing Letters  3 8, 2012. Awarded "The Taylor & Francis Remote Sensing Letters Award" 2013 for the best letter published in the Remote Sensing Letters publication during the previous calendar year, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01431161.2012.659354
  • F. Dorigatti, M. Sterling, D. Rocchi, M. Belloli, A.D. Quinn, C.J. Baker, E. Ozkan, 2012, “Wind tunnel measurements of crosswind loads on high sided vehicles over long span bridges”, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 107–108, 214–224 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jweia.2012.04.017
  • H Hemida, C J Baker, G Gao, 2012, “The calculation of train slipstreams using Large-Eddy Simulation”, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid 228,1 25-36 http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409712460982
  • C J Baker, 2013, “A framework for the consideration of the effects of crosswinds on trains”, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 123, 130–142, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jweia.2013.09.015,
  • C J Baker, 2013,  “Pensnett – its name and origins” Staffordshire History Journal
  • C J Baker, 2013, “A unified framework for the prediction of cricket ball trajectories in spin and swing bowling”, IMechE Proceedings P – Journal of Sports Engineering, 227, 1 31 – 38, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1754337112440793
  • C J Tomlinson, T Prieto-Lopez, R Bassett, L Chapman, X-M Cai, J E  Thornes, C J Baker  2013 “Showcasing urban heat island work in Birmingham – measuring, monitoring, modelling and more”, Weather 68, 2, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/wea.1998
  • C J Baker, A Quinn, M Sima, L Hoefener, R Licciardello, 2013, Full-scale measurement and analysis of train slipstreams and wakes: Part 1 Ensemble averages. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit, 228, 5, 451-467, Awarded the William Alexander Agnew Meritorious Award / Clarence Noel Goodall Award of the  IMechE Railway Division 2015, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409713485944
  • C J Baker, A Quinn, M Sima, L Hoefener, R Licciardello, 2013, Full-scale measurement and analysis of train slipstreams and wakes. Part 2 Gust analysis, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit 228, 5.  468-480. Awarded the William Alexander Agnew Meritorious Award / Clarence Noel Goodall Award of the IMechE Railway Division 2015, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409713488098
  • T Gilbert, C J Baker, A D Quinn, 2013, “Aerodynamic pressures around high-speed trains: the transition from unconfined to enclosed spaces”, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid 227, 6, 608-621, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409713494947
  • T Gilbert, C J Baker, A D Quinn, 2013, “Gusts caused by high speed trains in confined spaces and tunnels”, Journal of wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 121, 39–48, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jweia.2013.07.015
  • C J Baker, S J Jordan, T Gilbert, M Sterling, A Quinn, T Johnson, J Lane, 2014, “Transient aerodynamic pressures and forces on trackside and overhead structures due to passing trains. Part 1 Model scale experiments”, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid 228 36 – 69, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409712464859
  • C J Baker, S J Jordan, T Gilbert, M Sterling, A Quinn, T Johnson, J Lane, 2014, “Transient aerodynamic pressures and forces on trackside and overhead structures due to passing trains. Part 2 Standards applications”, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid, 228 36 – 69, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409712464859
  • C J Baker, 2014, “Train aerodynamics – a review; Part 1 Fundamentals”,  Aeronautical Journal 118, 1201 http://aerosociety.com/News/Publications/Aero-Journal/Online/1937/A-review-of-train-aerodynamics-Part-1-Fundamentals
  • C J Baker, 2014, “Train aerodynamics - a review; Part 2 Applications” Aeronautical Journal 118, 1202 http://aerosociety.com/News/Publications/Aero-Journal/Online/2056/A-review-of-train-aerodynamics-Part-2-Applications
  • C J Baker, M Sterling, P Berry, 2014, “A generalised model of crop lodging”, Journal of Theoretical Biology 363, 1–12 , http://dx.doi.org/10.1016./j.jtbi.2014.07.032
  • D Soper, C J Baker, M Sterling, 2014, “Experimental investigation of the slipstream development around a container freight train using a moving model facility”, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 135, 105–117, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0954409712464859
  • F Dorigatti, M Sterling, C J Baker, A D Quinn, 2015, “Crosswind effects on the stability of a model passenger train - a comparison of static and moving experiments”, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 138, 36-51, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jweia.2014.11.009
  • J A Morden, H Hemida, C J Baker, 2015, “Comparison of RANS and Detached Eddy Simulation Results to Wind-Tunnel Data for the Surface Pressures Upon a Class 43 High-Speed Train”, ASME Journal of Fluids Engineering, 137, 4, 041108, http://dx.doi.org/10.1115/1.4029261
  • M Jesson, M Sterling, C Letchford, C Baker, 2015, “Aerodynamic Forces on the Roofs of Low-, Mid- and High-Rise Buildings Subject to Transient Winds”, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics”, 143, 42-49 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jweia.2015.04.020
  • C J Baker, 2015, “Risk analysis of pedestrian and vehicle safety in windy environments”, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 147, 283–290, http://dx.doi:10.1016/j.jweia.2015.10.001