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Marcel Zijlema is an associate professor of Computational Hydraulics in the section of Environmental Fluid Mechanics at the faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences of Delft University of Technology.

Marcel holds an MSc (cum laude) and PhD degree in numerical mathematics from Delft University of Technology. He worked as a researcher at Rijkswaterstaat and contributed to the numerical modelling of shallow water flows in the Dutch water systems (WAQUA/TRIWAQ software) for many years.

Currently, his research focuses mainly on the computational hydraulics. Marcel is responsible for the scientific development of two open source software packages for the simulation of free surface flow and wave propagation in coastal waters: SWAN and SWASH. He is the lead author of the SWASH wave-flow model and has been one of the authors of spectral wave model SWAN for many years. Both SWAN and SWASH models have become the international standard for computing waves in coastal waters (over 10,000 user institutions in over 150 countries), and provide the international community (e.g. private industry, universities and government agencies) operationally robust and scientifically accurate platforms for wave and flow prediction at all scales from oceanic waters to small coastal regions and harbours.

Marcel has published more than 60 peer-reviewed journal papers and conference proceedings. See below an overview of his publications. You can also find them on ResearchGate, Google Scholar or Web of Science.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctorate, Applied Mathematics. Computational modeling of turbulent flow in general domains, Delft University of Technology

Award Date: 9 Apr 1996


  • TC Hydraulic engineering. Ocean engineering
  • computational hydraulics
  • water waves
  • scientific computing
  • numerical mathematics
  • high performance computing
  • free surface flows
  • spectral wave modelling
  • mimetic discretizations
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • numerical modelling
  • numerical analysis
  • ocean waves


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