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Douglas Kelley - University of Rochester. Rochester, NY, US

Douglas Kelley

Professor of Mechanical Engineering | University of Rochester


Douglas Kelley studies the performance of liquid metal batteries.

Areas of Expertise (5)

Mixing in Metals Casting

Liquid Metal Batteries

Grid-Scale Energy Storage

Fluid Dynamics of the Brain's Waste Removal System

Coherent Structures in Reactive Mixing


Douglas H. Kelley is a professor of mechanical engineering and a staff scientist at the Laboratory for Laser Energetics. His research interests include fluid dynamics of the brain’s waste removal system, mixing in the inner ear, liquid metal batteries and grid-scale energy storage, mixing in metals casting, and coherent structures in reactive mixing. Prof. Kelley is an NSF CAREER Award winner (2016) and has earned more than $26 million as principal investigator or co-PI, of which $9.7 million is as PI.

Education (3)

University of Maryland: PhD, Physics 2009

Auburn University: MS, Physics 2004

Virginia Tech: BS, Electrical Engineering 2000

Selected Articles (5)

Perivascular pumping of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain with a valve mechanism

Journal of the Royal Society Interface

Douglas H. Kelley, Yiming Gan, Stephanie Holstein-Rønsbo, Maiken Nedergaard, Kimberly A. S. Boster, and John H. Thomas


The flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) along perivascular spaces (PVSs) is an important part of the brain’s system for clearing metabolic waste. Experiments reveal that arterial motions from cardiac pulsations and functional hyperaemiadrive CSF in the same direction as the blood flow, but the mechanism producing this directionality is unclear. We present two models, one based on the full equations of fluid dynamics and the other using lumped parameters, in which the astrocyte endfeet function as valves, regulating flow between the PVS and the ECS.

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Glymphatic influx and clearance are accelerated by neurovascular coupling

Nature Neuroscience

Douglas H. Kelley, Stephanie Holstein-Rønsbo, Yiming Gan, Michael J. Giannetto, Martin Kaag Rasmussen, Björn Sigurdsson, Felix Ralf Michael Beinlich, Laura Rose, Verena Untiet, Lauren M. Hablitz, and Maiken Nedergaard


Functional hyperemia, also known as neurovascular coupling, is a phenomenon that occurs when neural activity increases local cerebral blood flow. Because all biological activity produces metabolic waste, we here sought to investigate the relationship between functional hyperemia and waste clearance via the glymphatic system.

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Artificial intelligence velocimetry reveals in vivo flow rates, pressure gradients, and shear stresses in murine perivascular flows

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Douglass H. Kelley, Kimberly A.S. Boster, Shengze Cai, and Antonio Ladrón-de-Guevara,


Diseases such as Alzheimer’s and small vessel disease are linked to alterations of flow in the perivascular spaces that surround cerebral blood vessels and transport water-like fluids around brain tissue. Understanding the function, failure, and potential rehabilitation of the system depends on high-fidelity, in vivo quantification of flow rates, pressure, and shear stress, which have previously been unavailable. We show that artificial intelligence velocimetry (AIV), which integrates sparse two-dimensional (2D) in vivo velocity measurements with physics-informed neural networks, can accurately infer high-resolution pressure and shear stresses.

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Oscillations of the large-scale circulation in experimental liquid metal convection at aspect ratios 1.4–3

Journal of Fluid Mechanics

Douglass H. Kelley, Jonathan S. Cheng, Ibrahim Mohammad, Bitong Wang, Declan F. Keogh, and Jarod M. Forer


We investigate the scaling properties of the primary flow modes and their sensitivity to aspect ratio in a liquid gallium (Prandtl number Pr=0.02) convection system through combined laboratory experiments and numerical simulations. We survey cylindrical aspect ratios 1.4≤Γ≤3 and Rayleigh numbers 104≲Ra≲106. In this range the flow is dominated by a large-scale circulation (LSC) subject to low-frequency oscillations. In line with previous studies, we show robust scaling of the Reynolds number Re with Ra and we confirm that the LSC flow is dominated by a jump-rope vortex (JRV) mode whose signature frequency is present in velocity and temperature measurements.

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Sensitivity analysis on a network model of glymphatic flow

Journal of the Royal Society Interface

Douglas H. Kelley, Kimberly A. S. Boster, Jeffrey Tithof, Douglas D. Cook, and John H. Thomas


Intracranial cerebrospinal and interstitial fluid (ISF) flow and solute transport have important clinical implications, but limited in vivo access to the brain interior leaves gaping holes in human understanding of the nature of these neurophysiological phenomena. Models can address some gaps, but only insofar as model inputs are accurate. We perform a sensitivity analysis using a Monte Carlo approach on a lumped-parameter network model of cerebrospinal and ISF in perivascular and extracellular spaces in the murine brain.

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