Water Engineering Group

Department of Civil & Structural Engineering

Prof. Simon Tait

Professor of Water Engineering
Simon Tait


+44 (0) 114 222 5771

Department of Civil and Structural Engineering
Sir Frederick Mappin Building
Mappin Street,
S1 3JD


Simon's primary research focus is on the processes associated with erosion, transportation and deposition of sediment in river and urban drainage systems, with a strong emphasis on fundamental flow and grain processes. Linked to this theme is his work in turbulence and free surface wave dynamics associated with flows over rough, water worked sediment deposits. His secondary interests are in applying and developing improved measurement and management methodologies to allow urban water infrastructure systems to cope better with pressures caused by climate change, changing patterns of use and physical deterioration. Current work also includes the study of energy use and recovery in urban water systems.

Recent activities and achievements

  • Chair of the IWA Working Group in Data and Models
  • Guest Professor – Sichuan University (2013-2016)


  • 2013-2017 HYTECH – Hydrodynamic Transport in Ecologically Critical Interfaces – Lead partner University of Padua, funded by ERA, €596,000, investigators at Sheffield, Simon Tait and Songdong Shao.
  • 2011-2014 Innovative Energy Recovery Strategies in the Urban Water Cycle INEERS – Lead Partner WGS, funded by EU Interreg, €282,500, investigators Simon Tait, Alma Schellart, Mostafa Mohamad (Univ of Bradford), Rob Pheasant (Univ of Bradford)
  • 2011-2015 Pennine Water Group: Water Systems for a Changing World, funded by EPSRC, £1,201,728, investigators Adrian Saul, Joby Boxall, Catherine Biggs, Simon Tait, Kirill Horoshenkov, Liz Sharp.
  • 2010-2014 PREPARED – adapting to climate change – Lead Partner KWR, funded by EU FR7, £316,000, investigators Simon Tait, Liz Sharp


Ph.D. (University of Aberdeen)
B.Sc.(Eng) (University of Aberdeen)

Research project(s)

Pennine Water Group

PWG logo
The Pennine Water Group (PWG) is an EPSRC funded Platform Grant centre dedicated to trans-disciplinary research into urban water and wastewater, working closely with industry from fundamental research through implementation. http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/penninewatergroup


CENTAUR is a European Union Horizon 2020 (H2020) research and innovation project. This project aims to provide an innovative, cost effective, local autonomous sewer flow control system, to reduce urban flood risk and thus fits within the requirements of the priority thematic area of flood management identified by the EIP...


(2017). SPH modelling of depth-limited turbulent open channel flows over rough boundaries. International Journal for Numerical Methods in Fluids, 83 (1), pp. 3-27. (Full Text).
(2017). Geostatistical upscaling of rain gauge data to support uncertainty analysis of lumped urban hydrological models. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 21 (2), pp. 1077-1091. (Full Text)., Abstract: © 2017 The Author(s).In this study we develop a method to estimate the spatially averaged rainfall intensity together with associated level of uncertainty using geostatistical upscaling. Rainfall data collected from a cluster of eight paired rain gauges in a 400 × 200m urban catchment are used in...
(2016). Potential application of mesh-free SPH method in turbulent river flows. GeoPlanet: Earth and Planetary Sciences, (Full Text).
(2016). Editorial. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers. Water Management., 169 (2), pp. 55-56.
(2016). Potential Application of Mesh-Free SPH Method in Turbulent River Flows. In Rowi?ski PM, Marion A (Ed.), Hydrodynamic and Mass Transport at Freshwater Aquatic Interfaces 34th International School of Hydraulics pp. 11-22. (Full Text)., Abstract: This book presents selected contributions of the 34th International School of Hydraulics that was held in May 2015 in Zelechów, Poland. It gives an overview about the state of the art in environmental hydraulics.
(2016). A model of the free surface dynamics of shallow turbulent flows. Journal of Hydraulic Research/De Recherches Hydrauliques, 54 (5), pp. 516-526. (Full Text)., Abstract: Understanding the dynamic free surface of geophysical flows has the potential to enable direct inference of the flow properties based on measurements of the free surface. An important step is to understand the inherent response of free surfaces in depth-limited flows. Here a model is presented to...
(2016). Analysis of ground-source heat pumps in north-of-England homes. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers, Abstract: The performance of ground-source heat pumps (GSHPs) for domestic use is an increasing area of study in the UK. This paper examines the thermal performance of three bespoke shallow horizontal GSHPs installed in newly built residential houses in northern England as compared with a control house...
(2015). Predicting wastewater temperatures in sewer pipes using abductive network models. Water Science and Technology, 71 (1), pp. 89-89.