Jon Hill

Lecturer in Physical Geography, Environment Department, University of York


My interests span palaeo-environmental modelling, bioinformatics and oceanography. I use state-of-the-art software to understand processes and events in the past, present and future.


My main research centres around the use of advanced numerical models. I use computational fluid dynamic to examine environmental conditions in the past, present and future. Models allow us to recreate past events, understand the details of the processes that we observe today and predict what might happen in the future. Examples of my research have been to recreate tsunamis 8,000 and 20,000 years ago, in the UK and Australia respectively, that were caused by submarine landslides. These events would have had major impacts on the people living at the time, just as similar events do today. I am also interested in determining the  environmental impacts of tidal energy devices as we must create carbon-free energy, but equally this must not at the detriment of the local environment. My work looks at simulating the turbines using multiscale meshes, where the resolution of the mesh varies by order of magnitude from metre-scale to 10’s of kilometres. I use the same tools to provide insight on the geological record; using models to understand palaeo-oceanography. Finally, I use the same software development skills I gained developing fluid dynamic models to write bioinformatic software. All of this research centres around using and writing new software and I try to only use open-source software wherever possible.

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