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Nicholas Salmon is Queensland’s 2020 Rhodes Scholar

22nd October 2019

Nicholas Salmon graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering and Master of Engineering with Honours Class 1 (Chemical Engineering) from The University of Queensland with the University Medal for Chemical Engineering in 2017.

He is employed as a process engineer in the Bauxite and Alumina Global Centre of Excellence of engineering, technical and professional services firm Worley.

“As an engineer, I contribute to my team by finding technical solutions that reduce our clients’ water, energy and resource consumption in economically feasible ways,” Mr Salmon said.

“The biggest threat to our community is climate change. It threatens our environment and economy, and in so doing threatens our very way of life.

“We need engineering solutions that allow us to continue to grow sustainably and prosper while reducing emissions and resolving economic concerns with transition to green energy.”

Mr Salmon will undertake a Doctor of Philosophy (DPhil) Engineering Science at Oxford.

“Oxford University is currently pursuing research in using renewable energy to generate green hydrogen and subsequently, green ammonia using the Haber Bosch process,” he said.

“I propose to investigate the geographical gap between renewable energy sources and downstream users of ammonia, a common fertiliser.

“Australia is rich in renewable energy while other major energy consumers, such as India, Japan, and Korea, have far less capacity to generate plentiful renewable energy. My research would identify the most effective ways to bring together disparate renewable energy sources to produce green ammonia for use in fertiliser or as an energy source.”


While at university, Mr Salmon shared his knowledge by tutoring fellow engineering students in thermodynamics and reactions engineering.

A keen debater, he is a three-time finalist in the World Universities Debating Championships.

He also created and taught a debating module for Masters engineering students and gave many hours of his time as the Queensland Schools Debating Team coach with his team becoming national champions in 2016.

He is also a violinist with the Brisbane Philharmonic Orchestra and played in a university orchestra.

Queensland Governor Paul de Jersey announced Mr Salmon’s Rhodes Scholarship at Government House today.

Rhodes Scholarships:

Rhodes Scholarships are postgraduate awards, started in 1903 under the will of the late Cecil John Rhodes, for outstanding all-round students to study at the University of Oxford.

More than 100 scholars are selected each year from countries such as Australia, Bermuda, Canada, China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica and the Commonwealth Caribbean, Kenya, New Zealand, Pakistan, Southern Africa (including South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia and Swaziland), United Arab Emirates, United States, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The qualities Cecil Rhodes set out for those seeking Rhodes Scholarships include: academic and intellectual excellence, integrity of character, respect for fellow beings and a capacity for leadership.

More than 500 Australian Rhodes Scholars have been selected since the scheme began. 

A Rhodes Scholarship covers all University and College fees, a personal stipend and return airfare.


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