Engineering Research Themes

JCU has many world-renowned researchers who undertake cutting-edge research in their chosen field of engineering.

We are at the forefront of research in a number of fields, including:

Battery Technology

Chemical Engineering

Prof Yinghe He

Synthesis and characterisation of novel cathode materials for rechargeable batteries including lithium and magnesium ion batteries; design and development of innovative processes for energy and materials recovery of recycled waste batteries.

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Biofuels, Hydraulics, and Thermal Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

Dr Rong Situ

Studies on bio-fuel engine technologies, which can be applied in transport and mining industries, environmental fluid mechanics that relates to the protection of the natural water resources, and thermal-hydraulics promote the productivity of energy/processing industries.

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Brain-inspired Computing

Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Dr Mostafa Rahimi Azghadi

Studies on the design and implementation of low-power and high-performance neuromorphic electronics for challenging cognitive tasks, and building large-scale neural networks to help research and cure brain diseases

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Computational and Experimental Fluid Mechanics

Mechanical Engineering

Prof Wenxian Lin

Studies on buoyancy-driven flows, turbulent flows, jets and plumes, stratified flows, boundary layers, mixing and entrainment in river and environmental flows, natural convection flow and heat transfer, building heating and ventilation, and solar collector technologies including solar water heaters, solar air collectors, solar drying, solar thermal storage materials, using experiments, scaling and stability analysis, and advanced computational fluid dynamics techniques such as finite volume method, direct numerical simulation, and large-eddy simulation. These studies have a wide range applications in energy and environmental industries.

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Computational and Mathematical Methods

Electronic Systems and Internet of Things Engineering

Dr Bronson Philippa

Across a range of applications including materials science, sensing, and data analysis; Computational methods to simulate and analyse charge transport in organic semiconductors, with applications such as photodetectors, solar cells, and LEDs; Sensing technologies for smart agriculture, including near-infrared spectroscopy, hyperspectral imagery, and ultrasound; Signal processing, data analysis, and machine learning techniques.

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Electronic Materials Engineering

Electrical and Electronic Engineering

A/Prof Mohan Jacob

Fabrication of novel thin films (metallic, polymer, organic semiconductors and graphene) using plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition and
non-destructive characterisation of materials (superconductors, conductors, polymers and insulators/dielectrics) at cryogenic temperature (from -2700C). Electrical testing and calibration of devices, and development and testing of sensors for various applications including precision agriculture.

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Embedded Systems Engineering

Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Dr Mostafa Rahimi Azghadi

Studying the design and implementation of low-cost ubiquitous computers for applications ranging from agriculture automation to medical instrumentation.

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Geotechnics Engineering

Civil Engineering

A/Prof Siva Sivakugan

Studies on foundations, soft clays, mine back filling, soil internal erosion, ground improvement, addressing real world problems, using laboratory testing and numerical modelling, carried out for the geotechnical and mining industry.

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Internet of Things Engineering

Electronic Systems and Internet of Things Engineering

Prof Wei Xiang, Dr Eric Wang, Dr Bronson Philippa

Studies on physical-layer IoT techniques: Low-power and long-range IoT communications, massive machine-to-machine (M2M) communications, low-latency and ultra-reliable IoT communications, and multiple-access schemes for connecting massive numbers of IoT smart devices simultaneously.
Studies on application-layer IoT techniques: Big IoT data analytics; Networks of embedded devices (smart things), protocols, and architecture; Advances in wireless sensor networks (WSN); Solutions to improve IoT big data networks; Networks of embedded devices: privacy and security.
Practical applications of IoT networks: IoT for remote monitoring of healthcare, smart agriculture, smart city applications (smart water networking, smart grid, etc.), IoT for environmental monitoring.

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Materials Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

A/Prof Ling Yin

Studies on multiscale structure-property-process relations of a wide spectrum of engineering, dental and biological hard tissue materials, which have applications in optics, semiconductors, mechanical structures, dental restorations, osteoporosis/osteoarthritis studies, marine/animal sciences, and sugar and mining industries.

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Microwave Pyrolysis

Electrical and Electronic Engineering

A/Prof Mohan Jacob

Development of custom made microwave pyrolysis units and optimise waste to energy conversion requirements.

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Particle Technology

Chemical Engineering

Prof Yinghe He

Snthesis via microfluidic and other approaches and property and performance characterisation of microparticles and microcapsules for controlled release applications; synthesis of bifunctional catalysts for biodiesel production.

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Polymer Engineering

Chemical Engineering

Dr George Vamvounis

Organic/polymer electronics: synthesis and characterisation of novel polymers and organic small molecules to obtain an understanding of the fundamental structure-property relationships of these electro- and photo- active organic materials for the improvement of the optoelectronic device performance.
Advanced sensing technology: synthesis of new polymers for the colourimetric or fluorescence detection of analytes, like nitroaromatics, that are highly responsive and selective.
Solar energy conversion: synthesis of new polymers for plastic solar cells (OPVs) to increase the efficiency and operational lifetime of these devices.

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Power Engineering and Renewable Energy

Electrical and Electronic Engineering

A/Prof Ahmad Zahedi

Studies on integration of solar energy and wind power (with high penetration levels) into future smart grid. Studies on electric vehicle as distributed storage to support the electricity network during peak demand periods. Developing real and on the ground North Qld sun radiation data. Modelling hybrid energy systems for QLD’s remote communities.

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Process Modelling

Chemical Engineering

Dr Madoc Sheehan

Drying: multi-scale modelling and experimental validation of drying of particulates including sugar, microalgae and minerals.
Process modelling: development, validation and use of CFD, geometry and process systems models in the multi-scale modelling of particulate drying systems, particularly flighted rotary drying.

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Risk Management

Chemical Engineering

Dr Ben Seligmann

Theory and practice of Hazard Identification (HAZID); development of a novel HAZID methodology for direct implementation in industry; application of complex systems and complexity science to risk management problems.

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Structural Materials and Design

Civil Engineering

Dr Rabin Tuladhar

Studies on sustainable construction materials, seismic design, structural health monitoring and strengthening of aged infrastructure. The development of recycled plastic fibres to reinforce concrete, received the Australian Innovation Award in Manufacturing, Construction and Innovation category, in 2015.

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Telecommunications Engineering

Electronic Systems and Internet of Things Engineering

Studies on next-generation wireless communications techniques such as 5G mobile communications, massive MIMO, spatial modulation, new channel coding schemes such as Fountain codes, Polar codes, etc. Studies on multimedia communications focusing on error-resilient video compression and streaming; Deep learning based computer vision applications, e.g., region-of-interest (ROI) image processing, saliency object detection, machine learning and neural networks based image and video analytics, etc.


Water Resources Engineering

Civil Engineering

Dr Bithin Datta

Studies in surface water, hydrologic modelling, dams and reservoirs planning and operation, conjunctive management of surface and groundwater. These include salt water intrusion and mine waste water seepage.

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Wind and Structural Engineering

Civil Engineering

Prof John Ginger

Studies on wind loading and structural response with the Cyclone Testing Station using wind tunnel model studies, full scale testing, and structural analysis. Outcomes are used by the building industry, and Standards Australia and also for building vulnerability assessments by Emergency management and the Insurance Industry.

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