The development of energy production, distribution, and storage systems that do not rely on the use of fossil-fuel sources is one of the most important problems facing our society. My research interests are in the broad area of the combustion and reformation of alternative and sustainable fuels. The central aim of this research program is to develop accurate thermo-chemistry and transport models for alternative chemical energy sources and the devices which will utilize these fuels. Due to the lack of hydrogen-distribution systems, the reformation of both hydrocarbon and alternative fuels to synthesis gas (syngas: CO + H2) is a technology that may enable widespread fuel-cell application. My research program will study the use of cool-flame combustion processes to generate syngas from a variety of fossil and renewable sources, such as natural gas, methanol, ethanol, and biodiesel. Alternative-fuel chemistry models will be validated and improved through comparisons with advanced (laser) diagnostic measurements performed in elegant and simple experiments.
Positions are available for both undergraduate and graduate students to engage in research that employs a combination of experimental, analytical, and computational techniques.
Laboratory Facilities: Shock Wave Physics Group (SWPG)