Philip Liu, Cornell professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, is an internationally recognized expert on ocean waves and their impact on coastlines and structures. He led the NSF-sponsored group of U.S. scientists who investigated the aftermath of the December 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.
Involved in tsunami research for more than 30 years, Liu helped to develop the tsunami coastal warning system for countries surrounding the Pacific Ocean. At Cornell, his research employs a 120-foot-long wave tank in the DeFrees Hydraulics Lab that simulates waves, including tsunamis.
Among other research topics, all on the fluid dynamics of ocean waves, Liu has developed a numerical model to calculate wave amplitude and the direction of wave propagation in the near-shore environment and is investigating the generation and propagation of long waves (tsunamis) under wave groups.
Liu is available to explain the science behind storm surges and their impact.