Dr Mohammednoor Altarawneh
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
School of Engineering
The University of Newcastle, Australia
Dr Altarawneh is currently a postdoctoral research fellow in the University of Newcastle. He is involved in supervision of three PhD students as well as teaching chemical engineering in the School of Engineering. Prior to his appointment at Newcastle, Dr Altarawneh was employed as an Assistant Professor and the Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering at Al-Hussein Bin Talal University in Jordan (September 2008 -September 2011).
Dr Altarawneh has extensive experience in modelling the homogeneous (gas phase) and heterogeneous (catalysed) reactions of dioxins. He has developed an array of skills which enable him to apply a combination of experimental, theoretical, computational, and chemical modelling approaches to understand the chemistry of halogenated organic pollutants. His experience, knowledge and skills in modelling both catalytic and gas-phase effects underpin the research outlined in the present project. In particular, he possesses intimate knowledge of all methodologies proposed in this submission to study the formation and destruction of sulfur analogous of dioxins.
Dr Altarawneh’s knowledge and technical ability have enabled him to develop detailed chemical kinetic mechanisms for the gas phase formation of the notorious pollutants of dioxins and their decomposition through oxidation and pyrolysis. In previous studies, he has also elucidated the role of catalysts in promoting the formation of halogenated pollutants. Together with the researchers in the Priority Research Centre for Energy, he has conducted a preliminary experimental and computational investigation of the gas phase formation of dioxins from permethrin and captan pesticides. The pesticide fragments and dihydroxylated benzene comprise an important group of precursors in the formation of dioxins.
Research carried out by Dr Altarawneh has led to solving several problems relating to the formation and destruction of dioxins, which had been posed in the literature. For instance, he discovered that very rich reducing conditions significantly reduce the overall toxicity of PCDDs congeners thereby converting them to the less toxic congeners of PCDFs.
- PhD (Chemical Engineering), University of Newcastle, 2008
- Master of Engineering Studies, University of Sydney, 2005
- ab initio calculations, mechanisms of chemical reactions
My research focuses on quantum chemistry, chemical modelling, thermodynamics and kinetics. I have an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering and PhD in Physical Chemistry, which enables me to gain unique insight into the chemistry of dioxin formation and destruction. My contributions include significant new insights into the understanding of gas phase formation, destruction and chlorination/dechlorination of organic pollutants. This involves:
• The unravelling of the elementary reactions that governs various gas phase phenomena and providing accurate measurements for their reaction rate constants and thermochemical parameters for species involved.
• Theoretical interpretation of experimental data through the use of quantum chemical modelling coupled to detailed reaction pathway and kinetic analysis.
• Providing insights with regards to the role of the catalysts in the formation of PCDD/F through the use of quantum solid-state modelling and direct measurements.
I have been recently awarded the Bernard Lewis Fellowship by the International Combustion Institute. This is a prestigious international acknowledgement. It is generally recognised in the international combustion community that recipients of Bernard Lewis Fellowships are the most innovative and productive young combustion researchers in the world. I have published over 60 journal and conference papers.
Dr Altarawneh’s interests are in the fields of reaction mechanisms and kinetics for the formation of organic pollutants. I have effectively collaborated with experimental analysts in order to connect experimental results with theoretical predictions. Throughout my research, I collaborate with researchers from the Priority Research Center for Energy (PRCfE).
My recent research and RHD supervision focuses on:
- Formation of the toxic industrial pollutants polychlorinated dibenzothiophenes (PCDT) and thianthrenes (PCTA) – the “new dioxins”. The practical significance of this proposal is to understand the sources and emission of PCDTs and PCTAs in Australia.
- Transformation of perflourintaed chemicals in the environment.
- Emission of NOx from thermal treatment of biomass.
- Modeling mineral CO2 sequestration.
Fields of Research
|030505||Physical Organic Chemistry||60|
|030699||Physical Chemistry Not Elsewhere Classified||40|
Centres and Groups
I served as the head of chemical engineering department in Al-Hussein Bin Talal university (Jordan) between 2009-2011.
- Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics
My teaching experience includes 3 years of intense teaching of courses in chemical engineering department. I have taught ten different subjects including, Thermodynamics, Reaction Kinetics, Industrial safety, Dynamics and Statics.