Masters Scholarship in Combustion Kinetics Measurements of Hydrogen Carrier Fuels Using Gas Dynamic Shock Waves

The recipient of this scholarship will be using a "shock tube" to measure combustion properties such as ignition delay time of alternative fuels containing hydrogen.

With the growing pressure to curb greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions worldwide, green alternative fuels including biodiesel, ethanol, methanol and hydrogen carrier fuels like ammonia are gaining increasing attention to power engines and heating processes. There is, however, a lack of information available on combustion properties of many of these net-zero carbon emission fuels such as autoignition delay times and branched chemical reaction rates. These properties are crucial for understanding and predicting the advent of knock in spark ignition engines as well as diesel knock in compression ignition engines. Knock is an objectionable noise due to abnormal combustion, which, if severe enough, can damage an engine. Shock tubes provide an excellent means of measuring important fuel properties like the autoignition delay time. Lasers can also be shone through the test section of a shock tube to collect spectroscopic data that can be used to measure chemical reaction rates that occur during combustion. This information is highly prized for validating computer simulations of combustion occurring not only in many engine types, but also in boilers and furnaces. The Masters candidate for this project will assemble a shock tube to perform these measurements mainly for hydrogen carrier fuels at pressures and temperatures found in real engines.

This CSIRO/RMIT co-funded scholarship provides a stipend of $32,841 per annum (pro-rata) for two years and successful applicants will also be awarded a Tuition Fee Scholarship. For details, please visit RMIT-CSIRO Masters by Research Scholarships.

To be eligible for this scholarship you must:

  • Have a first-class Honours or 2A Honours or equivalent degree in a relevant discipline of engineering/science
  • Be an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or an international student meeting the minimum English language requirements
  • Provide evidence of good oral and written communication skills
  • Demonstrate the ability to work as part of a multi-disciplinary research team
  • Meet RMIT’s entry requirements for the Master by Research degree
  • Applicants must be in Australia when applying and commencing studies (Australian borders are closed as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic).

Interested candidates should contact the RMIT supervisor by email at Please provide the following documentation to the RMIT supervisor in your email:

  • a statement to outline your interest
  • an electronic copy of your academic transcripts
  • a CV that includes any publications and the contact details of 2 referees.

You should also submit an application for 'Admission Only' via the Online application service.

1 November 2021.

Applications will close when a candidate is selected.

Dr. Petros Lappas
Director – Aerosol & Green Engines Laboratory, School of Engineering, RMIT University

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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.