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Biographical entry Bird, Graeme Austin (1930 - 2018)


26 May 2018
Aeronautical engineer


Graeme Bird was an aeronautical engineer whose research into molecular gas dynamics resulted in the development of the direct simulation-Monte Carlo method (DSMC), a method for simulating gas flow which has is used in a wide range of aerodynamic and aerospace applications. He published a large number of papers and books, including The DSMC method, the third edition of which was published in 2013. For over 40 years Bird worked closely with NASA. From 1964 to 1990 he was Lawrence Hargrave Professor of Aeronautical Engineering at the University of Sydney. A biennial lecture is given in his honour at each International Symposium on Rarefied Gas Dynamics.



1953 - 1959
Career position - Scientific Officer, Australian Defence Scientific Service
1964 - 1990
Career position - Lawrence Hargrave Professor of Aeronautical Engineering and Head of the Department, University of Sydney
1976 - 2018
Award - Fellow, Institution of Engineers, Australia
1976 - 2018
Award - Fellow, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering
1978 - 1980
Career position - Member of Council, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering
Award - Thermophysics Award, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Award - Medal of Exceptional Scientific Achievement, NASA
Award - NASA Distinguished Scientist Award
1996 - 2018
Award - Foreign Associate, United States National Academy of Engineering
Award - Centenary Medal for service to Australian society in aerospace engineering
Award - Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to aeronautical engineering, particularly in the field of molecular gas dynamics, as a researcher and academic, to professional scientific organisations, and as a mentor to young scientists

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Published resources

Journal Articles

  • Anon, 'Graeme Bird leaves a legacy in aerospace', Focus, 207 (2018), 60. Details

Helen Cohn