Professor Ffowcs Williams specialises in noise and vibration caused by unsteady flow. He was prominent in the Concorde programme for directing the research to control its takeoff noise.
Born in Wales in 1935, schooled in England and serving an Engineering Apprenticeship with Rolls Royce before going to the University of Southampton, he has always maintained a strong commitment to bring academic research to bear on industrial problems. He founded Topexpress Ltd, a consultancy company in Cambridge specialising in engineering science, was executive consultant to Rolls Royce and a director of VSEL plc.
For over 25 years he lead the division in which Cambridge University’s Fluid Mechanics, Aeronautics, Thermodynamics and Turbomachinery work is concentrated and was latterly the Master of Emmanuel College.