DR Robert Gordon

DR Robert Gordon


  • Advanced laser diagnostics for turbulent combustion
  • Combustion chemical kinetics, kinetics of auto ignition and pollutant formation
  • Flame-wall interactions and transient combustion events (ignition, autoignition, flashback, blowout, quenching)
  • MILD combustion for Gas Turbines
  • Spray formation and combustion, trans-critical sprays
  • Ultra-low emissions combustion for Gas Turbines with alternative and novel fuels



  • Dr. Robert Gordon is a Senior Lecturer in the Fluids and Thermal Sciences division of the Mechanical Engineering Department. He received his doctorate from the University of Sydney in 2007, undertook a post-doctoral research position at the Technical University of Darmstadt (Germany) to investigate high-altitude relight of gas turbine engines, and was later awarded a Newton International Fellowship to research liquid biofuel combustion at the University of Cambridge.

    Dr. Gordon then joined Rolls-Royce Industrial Gas Turbines in Montreal, Canada, to undertake the role of Research and Technology Team Leader, before joining the University of Melbourne in 2014. Dr. Gordon's research interests include: (1) the combustion of hydrogen, ethanol and alternative fuels, (2) industrial gas turbine efficiency and emissions, (3) fuel spray ignition and combustion for advanced internal combustion engines, and (4) Flame-Wall Interactions (FWI) and Flame-Cooling Hole interactions (FCAI) for pollutant control.

    He is coordinator of the Master of Energy Systems degree, teaches ENGR90028 Introduction to Energy Systems, MCEN30018 Thermodynamics and Fluid Mechanics, and is the coordinator for the ENGR90031 Energy Systems Project industrial placement program.

    Dr. Gordon has published 28 peer-reviewed journal papers with over 860 citations and an h-Index of 17 (Scopus 2019). Recognition for his research output includes an award for Most Distinguished Paper on Diagnostics in the 32nd International Symposium on Combustion, Best Student Paper at the 2015 Australian Combustion Symposium, Outstanding ANZ Section Paper at the 5th Asia-Pacific Conference on Combustion. He has a patent on a novel combustor concept for GT engines, and has given invited plenary presentations on High Repetition Rate Laser Diagnostics at the 2011 AIAA meeting and the 2011 Gordon Research Conference on Laser Diagnostics.

    Dr. Gordon served as Colloquium Co-Chai



Member of

  • Australian Institute of Energy. Member of the Australian Institute of Energy 2016 -
  • Combustion Institute. Member of the Combustion Institute, ANZ Section 2003 -


Selected publications


Investigator on

Additional Grant Information

  • Newton International Fellowship Alumni Grant, Royal Society, 2011-2020 

    "Alternative fuel reciprocating engine research", Ford Motor Company, USA, 2014-16 

    “Holistic coupled modelling approach of in-nozzle flow, fuel atomisation and spray dynamics in combustion systems through a generalised multi-phase framework”,
    European Commission Horizon 2020 - Research and Innovation Framework Programme, Marie SkÅ‚odowska-Curie Action: Innovative Training Networks (ITN) Excellent Science Call, 2016-2019   


Education and training

  • Grad Cert Uni Teaching, University of Melbourne 2018
  • Ph.D, University of Sydney 2008
  • B.Commerce, University of Sydney 1998
  • B.Eng, University of Sydney 1998

Awards and honors

  • Newton International Fellowship, Royal Academy of Engineering, 2009



Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • Dr Gordon is actively seeking experimental and numerical researchers in the following fields :

    • Spray and liquid fuel combustion (experimental and numerical), including transcritical studies, dual fuel combustors 4 positions
    • Emissions and performance impact of alternative fuels in the GT context 1 position
    • Investigation of ultra-low emissions technologies for industrial GTs, including reburn, EGR and MILD combustion. 1 position 

    Please review the University of Melbourne guidelines on eligibility and scholarships prior to application.    Dr Gordon is interested to hear from experimental and numerical researchers in the following fields :

    • Spray and liquid fuel combustion, including multicomponent bioethanol-gasoline surrogate fuels
    • Flame-wall interaction (FWI) and flame-cooling hole interaction (FCAI) influence on emissions
    • Hydrogen and hydrogen-natural gas combustion for high efficiency and low emissions

    Please review the University of Melbourne guidelines on eligibility and scholarships prior to application. Evidence of a strong background in thermodynamics and fluid mechanics is essential Prior research output should be demonstrated Please note the following relevant articles and annoucements: https://energy.unimelb.edu.au/news-and-events/news/renewable-hydrogen-research-grant-awarded-to-university-of-melbourne Future Fuels CRC https://www.futurefuelscrc.com/ The UniMelb Automotive Engineering Graduate Program: From Future Fuels to the Future of Transport https://www.minister.industry.gov.au/ministers/karenandrews/media-releases/boosting-post-grad-power-automotive-engineering