An animation showing a reacting front quenching and changing the spiral defect chaos state of Rayleigh-Bénard convection. From "Mukherjee & Paul, J. Fluid Mech., 2022".

From an invited seminar at Université Libre de Bruxelles organized by Professor Laurence Rongy (June 2022).

Saikat Mukherjee, PhD

I am interested in the numerical modeling of reaction-advection-diffusion processes in physical and biological systems. I use my expertise in high-performance computing and high-fidelity numerical modeling to answer pioneering questions pertaining to neurological disorders and microbial dynamics.

Current research interests include fluid dynamics of autocatalytic reaction fronts, spiral defect chaos, transport and reaction-diffusion processes in the glymphatic system of the brain, and the dynamics of bacteria in the presence of fluid flow.

Interests : fluid dynamics, reaction-advection-diffusion systems, pattern formation, chaos, biophysics, biological fluid dynamics


I completed my PhD in Engineering Mechanics at Virginia Tech under the supervision of Professor Mark Paul in May, 2020. Prior to joining Virginia Tech I completed my undergraduate in Mechanical Engineering from Jadavpur University, India in 2015. My PhD research involved the quantification of the geometry, nonlinear dynamics and feedback of propagating reaction fronts in chaotic convective flow fields generated by Rayleigh-Bénard convection. 

I started as a Postdoctoral Associate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University of Minnesota Twin Cities right after my PhD in 2020. In collaboration with experimentalists, I researched on the fluid mechanics, transport and excitable reaction-diffusion processes in the brain. I also worked on fluid flow and transport in bacterial biofilms. While working closely with Jeff Tithof , I also collaborated with exciting research groups across University of Minnesota, Yale University, University of Rochester, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, and ULB Brussels.

Beginning July 2023, I will be an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Iowa State University. I have openings for PhD and Masters students in my research group. For a list of research interests please go through my recent publications. Please send me an email at if you are interested.

Awards and honors