The 2014 Danckwerts-Pergamon Prize for the best thesis has been awarded to Dongping Chen.
The Danckwerts-Pergamon Prize is awarded by the Department each year for the best PhD dissertation on a subject connected with Chemical Engineering. The winner is chosen from those students who gained their PhDs in the preceding calendar year.
Dongping Chen was supervised by Prof Markus Kraft and his research thesis was entitled "Numerical Investigation of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon Clusters".
His thesis investigates the clustering behaviour of a series of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) using the molecular dynamics method and presents detailed surveys of the clusters to explore their morphologies and surface reactivities as the precursors of soot particles.
Dongping's research opens a fundamental way to understand soot particles and forms an important contribution to the ongoing development of better combustion models related to soot formation. Using his results, one can unveil the properties of nascent soot particles which are difficult to measure experimentally and guide the selection of model parameters based on the detailed survey of the numerical representations. Following Dongping’s approach, it is feasible to build up more complex system in future, and in turn, this can direct the modelling work in a highly positive way, thus providing more detailed information about the fundamental basis of soot particles.
Dongping is currently a Post Doctoral Research Associate in the Prof. Hai Wang's NanoEnergy lab at Stanford.