Leonid started a scientific career in a traditional science field of Gorky’s school of radiophysics – nonlinear wave interaction (see ref 1 for interaction of electromagnetic waves with atmospheric plasma)). Difficulties in the emigration process forced Leonid out of the scientific world for four years.  After his emigration to Israel, he enrolled as a graduate student at of Weizmann Institute of Science in Ph.D. with a focus in chemical physics. 

His project was an experimental study of convection near ion exchange membranes. After a year of research, Leonid proved that the original idea of supervisors was wrong and as a consequence of this proof Leonid was fired.  The details of the experiment as well as mathematical mode was published in ref. 2 and became the most quoted work Leonid published.  

Leonid completed his Ph.D. in mathematics in Technion, Haifa in 1982. The thesis was devoted to the explosive (faster than exponential) instability in the Pedlosky model of atmosphere.  Part of the Ph.D. thesis was published in ref 3. Leonid completed his second Ph.D.  – this time in mechanical engineering, in Tel Aviv University in 1985. His thesis was devoted to the numerical simulation of turbulent flows. Since then, Leonid’s research focused on numerical simulations.  One of the papers on topology of vorticity flow in turbulence (ref 4) stimulated extensive research by numerous scientists. During Leonid’s work on parallel computations, he proposed new a methodology of porting serial algorithms to the parallel computers (see ref 5). Later he tried (unsuccessfully) to commercialize this idea. In addition to the study of developed turbulence, Leonid was involved in the study of instabilities which eventually lead to turbulence (ref 5).   Leonid was tenured professor of Tel Aviv University.


  1. N.A. Mityakov, M.I. Rabinovich, V.O. Rapoport, L.E. Shtil'man Stimulated temperature scattering of electromagnetic waves in a plasma with collisions, JETP, 1974, Vol. 38, No. 5, p. 944

  2. Isaak Rubinstein and Leonid Shtilman J. Chem. Soc., Faraday Trans. 2, 1979,75, 231-24 Voltage against current curves of cation exchange membranes!divAbstract

  3. L. Merkine, L. Shtilman Explosive Baroclinic Instability Proceeding of Roy. Soc. DOI: 10.1098/rspa. 1984.0103,

  4. Richard B. Pelz, Victor Yakhot, Steven A. Orszag, Leonid Shtilman, and Evgeny Levich Phys. Rev. Lett. 54, 2505, 1985 Velocity-Vorticity Patterns in Turbulent Flow

  5. Michael Prestin and Leonid Shtilman, The Journal of Supercomputing, 1995, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp 347-364A, Parallel Navier-Stokes solver: The Meiko implementation

  6.  Shapiro, I.; Shtilman, L.; Tumin, A. Phys. Fluids 11, No. 10, 2984-2992 (1999) On stability of flow in an annular channel.

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