Faculty Directory

Duncan, James

Duncan, James

Wilson Elkins Professor (2013-2015)
Keystone Professor
Mechanical Engineering
3118 Glenn L. Martin Hall, Bldg 088



Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University, 1979




  • Fellow, American Physical Society
  • Poole and Kent Teaching Award for Senior Faculty of the College of Engineering, University of Maryland 2003
  • Distinguished Scholar Teacher University of Maryland 2004
  • Wilson H. Elkins Professorship, University System of Maryland, 2013-2015




  • Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Associate Editor 2010-2017
  • American Physical Society, Division of Fluid Dynamics:
    • Secretary-Treasurer 2003-2006
    • Coordinator of the Gallery of Fluid Motion 2001-2012
    • Chair of the Annual Meeting Press Relations Committee 2008-2012
    • Member-at-Large of the Executive Committee 2010-2013
    • Chairmanship Track of the Executive Committee 2012-2016



Experimental and theoretical/numerical investigations of fluid flows Breaking water waves Growing and collapsing bubbles interacting with compliant boundaries Turbulent boundary layers interacting with compliant walls Quantitative flow visualization


  • C. M. Ikeda, J. Wilkerling and J. H. Duncan, “The Implosion of Cylindrical Shell Structures in a High-Pressure Water Environment”, Proc. Roy. Soc. Lond. Series A, Vol. 469, 20130443, 2013


  • Kiger, K. T.; Duncan, J. H., “Air-Entrainment Mechanisms in Plunging Jets and Breaking Waves”, Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics, Vol. 44, pp. 563-596, 2012.


  • Maxeiner, E., Shakeri, M., Duncan, J. H., "A Parametric Study of Breaking Bow Waves using a 2D+T Technique”, Journal of Fluid Mechanics,  Vol. 687,   pp. 540-570,  2011.
  • Gomez-Ledesma, R., Kiger, K. T., Duncan, J. H. “The Impact of a Translating Plunging Jet on a Pool of the Same Liquid”, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Vol. 680   pp.  5-30, 2011.  
  • Diorio, J. D., Cho, Y., Duncan, J. H. and Akylas, T., “Resonantly Forced Gravity-Capillary Lumps on Deep Water. Part 1. Experiments”, Journal of Fluid Mechanics,  Vol. 672, pp. 268-287, 2011.
  • Cho, Y., Diorio, J. D., Akylas, T.,  and Duncan, J. H. “Resonantly Forced Gravity-Capillary Lumps on Deep Water. Part 2. Theoretical Model”,  Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Vol.  672, pp. 288-306, 2011.


  • J. D. Diorio, Y. Cho, J. H. Duncan, and T. R. Akylas,  "Resonantly forced gravity--capillary lumps on deep water. Part 1. Experiments," Journal of Fluid Mechanics, November, 2010.
  • Y. Cho,  J. D. Diorio, T. R. Akylas, and J. H. Duncan, "Resonantly forced gravity--capillary lumps on deep water. Part 2. Theory," Journal of Fluid Mechanics,November, 2010.


  • Diorio, J. D., Cho, Y., Duncan, J. H. and Akylas, T., “Gravity-Capillary Lumps Generated by a Moving Pressure Source, Physical Review Letters, Vol. 201, Issue 21, Article Number: 214502, 2009.
  • J. Diorio, X. Liu and J. H. Duncan, "An Experimental Investigation of Incipient Spilling Breaking," Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Vol. 633, pp. 271-283, 2009.
  • Shakeri, M., Tavakolinejad, M., and  Duncan, J. H., “An Experimental Investigation of Divergent Bow Waves Simulated by a Two-Dimensional plus Time Technique”,  Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Vol. 634, pp. 217-243, 2009.
  • Shakeri, M., Maxeiner, E.; Fu, T. and Duncan, J. H., “An Experimental Examination of the 2D+T Approximation”, Journal of Ship Research, Vol. 53, Issue 2, pp. 59-67, 2009.

Five Mechanical Engineering Graduate Students Named Future Faculty Fellows

Clark School program prepares graduate students for future academic career.

Mechanical Engineering Professors Receive DURIP Awards

Two professors win awards to support new research instrumentation.

Duncan Completes Chairmanship Track, APS Division of Fluid Dynamics

Mechanical Engineering Professor James Duncan completes APS DFD Chairmanship Track, will serve as Past Chair.

Alumna Receives Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Program Award

Alumna Christine Ikeda receives $510,000 grant to improve high-speed watercraft designs that reduce weight and improve efficiency.

Duncan Receives Wilson H. Elkins Professorship

Mechanical Engineering Professor James Duncan awarded professorship to expand research in hydrodynamics.

Clark School Faculty Win DoD Awards

DURIP awards are for research instrumentation towards defense research.

STS Program Has New Director

Betsy Mendelsohn to lead Science, Technology and Society Program for College Park Scholars.

ME PhD Student James Diorio Awarded ARCS Fellowship

Diorio is advised by Professor of Mechanical Engineering James Duncan.

Mechanical Engineering at Maryland Hosts Tsunami Science Forum

Forum Part of Greater Campus Tsunami Relief Day

Professors Wallace, Duncan Elected to Ameican Physical Society Division Executive Committee

This division is the principal professional organization for over five-thousand fluid dynamicists in the U.S. and abroad.

James Duncan Named 2004-2005 Distinguished Scholar-Teacher

Outstanding Scholarly Achievement and Accomplishments Recognized.

Professors Duncan, Schmidt Win Clark School Faculty Awards

These awards will be presented at the Clark School's Commencement on Friday, May 23, 2003.

Professor James Duncan Discovers Effects of Surfactant in Ocean Waves

Their findings were published in the January 30, 2003 issue of the journal Nature.

Duncan Named Director of Science, Technology, and Society Program

Professor James Duncan has been named Director STS Program, taking the reins from Professor James Wallace.

American Physical Society (APS)