Philippe R. Spalart obtained his Math and Engineering BS from Ecole Polytechnique Paris in 1978, and his MS and PhD in Aeronautics and Aerospace from Stanford in 1979 and 1982. He then conducted post-doctoral research on direct numerical simulation of transitional and turbulent boundary layers at NASA Ames until 1990 when he joined Boeing.
At Boeing, he created the Spalart-Allmaras one-equation RANS model. In 1997 he created the Detached-Eddy Simulation (DES) approach which blends RANS and LES to efficiently and accurately model separated flows at high Reynolds numbers. In addition to ongoing research in RANS and DES modeling, he continues investigations in tip vortex modeling, jet and airframe noise, and theoretical contributions in aerodynamics.
Spalart was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2017.