The 2019 Paul Caseau Thesis Prize Presented to Thibaut Lunet

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On November 13, at the Del Duca Foundation in Paris, EDF and the Académie des Technologies presented the Paul Caseau Prize to Thibaut Lunet for his work in the field of computer science and high-performance computing for his thesis defended at ISAE-SUPAERO in January 2018 and entitled, “Space-time parallel strategies for the numerical simulation of turbulent flows”.

Thibaut Lunet, engineer and post-graduate at ISAE-SUPAERO, is a post-doctoral researcher this year at the University of Geneva in the Mathematics Department. He worked on his thesis under the direction of Serge Gratton, professor at IRIT, co-supervised by Julien Bodart, associate professor at the Department of Aerodynamics, Energetics and Propulsion (DAEP), and Xavier Vasseur, research engineer at the Department of Complex System Engineering (DISC) at ISAE-SUPAERO.

He was awarded this €10,000 prize by a jury made up of the scientific directors of major French research bodies including EDF, Airbus Innovation and ONERA. Each year, all PhDs having earned their thesis in France during the previous year can compete in three major research areas concerning energy.

Simulation of turbulent flow in a canal

Thibaut received this prize in the field of computer science and high-performance computing. The subject of his thesis dealt with the analysis and development of new algorithms to carry out large numerical simulations of turbulent flows more effectively on massively parallel super-computers. The main idea was to study the possibility of applying parallelization techniques to compute in the time dimension (time parallelization) to speed it up in order to distribute multiple computer processors more efficiently between space parallelization and time parallelization.

Paul Caseau Prize
Thibaut Lunet, 2nd from the left

We asked Thibaut why he chose to do his thesis at ISAE-SUPAERO

After my 2A, I spent a gap year in Germany with a research and development team at BOSCH, and that experience was one of the triggers that led me to take up a career in research.

I worked in 3A on a project with a post-graduate at the Department of Aerodynamics, Energetics and Propulsion (DAEP), which confirmed my idea. After my end-of-studies internship I went looking for opportunities for a thesis with my former professors, and Julien Bodart gave me one. It was a thesis I could prepare at Supaero in collaboration with the ALGO (Parallel Algorithms) team at CERFACS (European Center for Research and Advanced Training in Scientific Computing), where one of my supervisors, Xavier Vasseur, worked before later joining DISC.

What is original about your thesis and what comes next in your research work?

Summit - Supercomputeur / Wikipédia - Carlos Jones/ORNL

One of the main features of my thesis is its multidisciplinary aspect combining fluid mechanics, applied mathematics and computer science.
The joint work with DAEP, CERFACS and DISC toward the middle of my thesis enabled me to take advantage of the skills and substantial experience of the different researchers working at the laboratories, which was of great help in my research work. The algorithm developed was applied to problems of large turbulent flows to assess its performances and its maturity for future applications.

Many areas needing improvement were identified, and I am currently working on them as a post-doctoral fellow in collaboration with many researchers specialized in this subject.

Paul Caseau Prize

This Prize, created in 2012 to honor the memory of Paul Caseau, founding member of the Académie des Technologies and former Director of Studies and Research at EDF, is awarded each year to young researchers who defended their doctoral thesis in the previous year. It rewards exceptional work in science and the originality of the ideas or approach in three areas: development of uses for electricity, energy efficiency and technical-economic analysis of electrical systems; modeling and digital simulation; computer science, notably for the optimal use of large scientific computers and computer networks.

Since its creation, the Paul Caseau Prize has been supported by a partnership between EDF, the Institut de France and the Académie des Sciences pour la Science et l’Enseignement.

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