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Modelling the response of expansive soil under wetting and drying

Expansive soils are those which can experience significant volume change when water content varies and as of this reason they are considered as problematic soils in geotechnical engineering. Expansive soils are widely distributed globally and cover a significant percentage of world land surface, especially in arid and semi-arid area.In Australia, expansive soil covers around 20% of surface soils and approximately 30% of the total ‘built-up’ land area is covered by expansive soils. This figure is expected to increase, as the …

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Engineering
School
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Research centre(s)
Centre for Materials Science

Modelling convection in porous media

When liquids of different densities mix, they can produce complex fingering patterns. This is particularly important in the flow of liquid in underground porous aquifers, where the density of the groundwater can be influenced by salinity or heat, as well as the insulation properties of porous materials. Another important application is the still-prototypical use of aquifers for carbon sequestration; the dissolution of CO2 into groundwater has a complex effect on its density, and convective mixing is crucial for accelerating the …

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences

Molecular modelling and simulations of anionic molecules

Biomolecular recognition refers to the interaction between a macromolecule (usually a protein or a nucleic acid) and a target molecule. Most often obtaining 3D experimental data is not trivial at atomistic scale. Computational methods offer the possibility of precisely describing all types of ligand–macromolecule interactions and are therefore a promising avenue to obtain that information, to test or discard a large variety of hypotheses regarding molecular recognition, folding of proteins/peptides and/or to select, among the vast chemical space of potential …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Genomics and Personalised Health

Design, Simulation and Implementation of a Reliable PV Fault Detection Technique

Faults in any elements such as modules, lines, DC-DC converters and DC-AC inverters of photovoltaic (PV) systems can impact the reliability of the system and exacerbate the efficiency. Some other faults such as ground-fault might lead to significant issues such as the risk of fire. Therefore, it is crucial to investigate and detect the faults in the PV system and prescribe the appropriate actions.The supervisory team is looking for passionate students who are keen to conduct an overarching review and …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Faculty of Engineering
School
School of Electrical Engineering and Robotics
Research centre(s)

Centre for Clean Energy Technologies and Practices

Molecular simulation of rotational diffusion in ideal liquids

Rotational tumbling of molecules in a liquid is an important phenomenon in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) because it determines the spin-relaxation rates of the resident nuclei which can determine MRI contrast.For a relatively simple molecular process, the theoretical description of rotational motion of molecules in liquids remains controversial. The most commonly used model, the Debye model, assumes that:the rotational diffusion propagator of a tumbling molecule is a solution of the diffusion equation on a spherical surfacethis solution is described by …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Materials Science

Simulating multiphase flow in gradient porous media using invasion percolation

Research on immiscible flow in a heterogeneous porous media has been an active area of research, particularly due to its close relationship with hydrology and petroleum engineering. Specifically, the modelling of oil migration and non-aqueous phase liquid migration in groundwater is a major challenge due to the multi-scale heterogeneous nature of the porous media.In this project we will develop efficient numerical method to simulate the fluid-fluid displacement process in porous media with a gradient in grain size, and gain fundamental …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Engineering
School
School of Mechanical, Medical and Process Engineering

Simulating atmospheric ageing of bushfire smoke

Bushfires have always been an integral part of the Australian continent and in recent years, due to climate change, their duration, frequency and severity have intensified.Bushfires, either naturally occurring or deliberate (i.e. prescribed burning) are a significant source of particulate matter (PM), a Class 1 carcinogenic (same as cigarette smoke and asbestos). Bushfires and prescribed biomass burning are the main cause of severe air pollution events in major Australian cities. They also have an impact on visibility and Earth’s radiation …

Study level
PhD, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for the Environment

Red blood cell modelling

Red blood cells (RBCs) require high deformability to sustain their passage through narrow capillaries of the microvasculature, which is primarily influenced by mechanical and geometrical factors of the cell. Ageing of the cell, several diseased conditions and some extracellular conditions adversely affect the cell morphology and deformability leading to cell rupture during micro-circulation and vesiculation (i.e. the process of removal of defective patches of the RBC membrane forming spherocytes that is associated with the loss of both RBC membrane and …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Engineering
School
School of Mechanical, Medical and Process Engineering

Modelling and simulation of Li Ion Capacitors

Climate driven global efforts has led to the exponential growth of renewable technologies which has spurred further research into energy storage technologies such as batteries, supercapacitors, and fuel cells alike. Of particular interest are hybrid technologies such as Lithium-ion capacitors (LiCs) which bridge the technological gaps between batteries and supercapacitors, paving the way to a best of both world solution. Within LiC research, predictive physics models based on constituent material properties are lacking.

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Materials Science

Maxwell's Demon revisited: Molecular simulations as a statistical physics learning tool

In his 1871 'Theory of Heat', James Clerk Maxwell introduced a fictitious being who can violate the second law of thermodynamics by following the trajectory of every molecule within a gas.The being, later dubbed 'Maxwell's Demon' by Lord Kelvin, would operate a small trapdoor in a partitioned container to allow hotter and colder molecules of the gas to pass to opposite sides of the container. The Demon would be able to raise the temperature of the gas in one half …

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Chemistry and Physics

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