CFD Research Corporation is a 30-year-old employee-owned R&D company with headquarters in Huntsville, AL. CFDRC currently employs 130 people and serves several industries including Aerospace, Biomedical, Defense, Materials, and Energy. Over the last 25 years, the plasma technology group at CFDRC has been active in the advancement of plasma science and development of plasma technologies. The key activities in the field included the development of engineering software for simulations of plasma devices and processes, consulting services for advancing plasma technologies, and fabrication and testing of device prototypes for electric propulsion, bio-medical, and other applications.


CFDRC brought to the market the first plasma simulation tool as a part of its general-purpose commercial multi-physics software package, CFD-ACE+. In 2004, CFD-ACE+ was sold to an international software company, ESI-Group. The CFD-ACE+Plasma commercial software is now utilized by more than half of the major plasma reactor equipment suppliers. The MAE Dept of UAH has several licenses of CFD-ACE+, and other EPSCoR members have expressed interest in using it for research and education.


Over the last 15 years, the Plasma Technologies Group has developed a new computation framework for adaptive kinetic-fluid simulations of transport processes using an Adaptive Mesh and Algorithm Refinement (AMAR) methodology. The most important aspect of AMAR is the adaptive algorithm refinement methodology for seamless coupling of kinetic and fluid solvers, which is particularly important for plasma simulations.


For the CPU2AL research project, the CFDRC plasma group is focusing its efforts in three main areas: development of multi-scale kinetic-fluid plasma models, applications of computational tools to advance plasma science, and advance emerging plasma technologies at interface of physical and life sciences.  

Multi-Scale Kinetic-Fluid Plasma Models

Expertise in the development of computational tools for modeling low-temperature plasmas, the study of electron kinetics in gas discharges – particularly in DC, RF and microwave discharges in atomic and molecular gases and reactive gas mixtures over a wide range of conditions, from vacuum to atmospheric pressures.  We also have significant expertise in the development of kinetic and fluid solvers for particle transport in plasmas.  We seek to help groups with integration of computational tools and numerical algorithms for plasma simulations on modern heterogeneous (CPU-GPU) computer systems.  We have a particular interest in advancing adaptive kinetic-fluid models for plasma-surface interactions.  And we can provide access to our tools to others.


Computational tools for advancing plasma science

Expertise includes the application of the advanced computational tools to understand gas breakdown, plasma formation and self-organization (striations, electrode spots, streamers, sparks, and arcs). We are particularly interested in understanding plasma in liquids and gas-liquid interfaces, and pulsed-power discharges with runaway electrons.  We seek to work with the theory and experimental groups to advance our models and validate our computational tools versus experiments. 


Emerging plasma technologies: 

Expertise in the development of plasma sources for material processing, surface functionalization and nanotechnologies.  CFDRC group has extensive expertise in thermal, field-induced and explosive electron emission from solid and liquid materials and composites.  We also have strong interests in expanding our studies to plasma interactions with liquids and bio-matter as well as experimental validation of our computational studies. We can work with other groups to advance plasma technologies for biomedical, agriculture and food processing applications.  We can offer CFDRC expertise and facilities for these studies.


Dr. Vladimir Kolobov

Technical Fellow, CFDRC team lead     


Dr. Robert Arslanbekov

Senior Principal Scientist                      


Dr. Dmitry Levko

Senior Research Scientist