Research interests:

  • Combustion chemistry of oxygenated biomass-derived fuels.  Influence of these fuels on the formation of toxic products and ultrafine soot nanoparticles.
  • Reduction of pollutant emissions and their chemical risks. Development of clean fuels and cleaner combustion technologies.


My research has been focused on combustion processes with the purpose of solving two essential problems for the future, energy demand and environmental protection, both of which are strongly related in this case since better combustion implies an energy gain and a limitation of pollution. I have pursued studies directed to understanding combustion chemistry and developing combustion kinetic models, especially for advanced oxygenated fuels. I have supplied massive experimental data obtained in different reactors (flame, flow reactor, etc.) and proposed to the community 10 validated mechanisms for the combustion of several oxygenated biofuels, e.g. furan, 2-methylfuran (MF), 2,5-dimethylfuran (DMF), tetrahydrofuran (THF), 2-methyltetrahydrofuran (MTHF), tetrahydropyran (THP), diethylether (DEE), dibutylether (DBE), combined fuel mixtures furanic fuels/gasoline surrogate, and DEE/butanol/butane. Unusual or surprising oxidation chemistries were observed when investigating the oxygenated biofuels, e.g. (i) a double negative temperature coefficient (NTC) behavior in the low-temperature oxidation of DEE that has never been seen before for this fuel, and (ii) a high ability of furanic fuels to form soot precursors at high temperature that contrasted with a generally-accepted trend for oxygenated fuels. 

At LRGP-CNRS-Nancy, I studied combustion chemistry of oxygenated fuels in flames using gas chromatography (GC) coupled to different detectors (TCD, FID, MS). Then, I investigated the pyrolysis chemistry of model compounds of biomass in a bench‑scale pyrolysis setup using comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GCxGC) at LCT-Ghent, Belgium. Then, I have studied, at PC1-Department of Chemistry-Bielefeld University, Germany, the formation of toxic oxygenated species and small soot precursors during the combustion of fuel mixtures (biofuels+fossil fuels), using dedicated electron ionization (EI) molecular-beam mass spectrometry (MBMS) coupled with GC, photoionization (PI)-MBMS, and photoelectron photoion coincidence (PEPICO) spectroscopy. The EI-MBMS-GC setup is located at Bielefeld University, while the PI-MBMS and PEPICO setups are located at NSRL (Hefei, China), NSRRC (Hsinchu , Taiwan), and SOLEIL Synchrotron (GIF-sur-YVETTE, France), respectively. I have developed detailed chemical kinetic models for the pyrolysis and combustion of the studied fuels, especially that of the new oxygenated biofuels. These models can be used in prediction of fuel consumption, product formation, especially toxic species and soot precursors, and can be a helpful piece in the development of a comprehensive soot model for the combustion of biofuels and biomass.

Since working at PC2A-CNRS-University of Lille (10/2017), I am focusing on a more difficult (but related) topic that is the impact of the combustion of oxygenated biomass-derived fuels on the formation of ultrafine soot nanoparticles. A comprehensive approach is being used, which involves novel flame and pyrolysis setups combined with highly sensitive laser-/synchrotron-based techniques and on the other hand the development of new kinetic mechanism based on theoretical calculations.


Contribution to research projects: 

2018-2019: Physical and Chemical Properties of the Atmosphere, labex-CaPPA. Project duration: 2012-2019. Funded by the French National Research Agency (ANR) through the PIA (Programme d'Investissement d'Avenir) under contract « ANR-11-LABX-0005-01 », and by the Regional Council « Hauts-de-France » and the « European Funds for Regional Economic Development » (FEDER).  [Role: Participant in the WP5 "Contributions to the study of interactions Aerosols/Clouds/Climate"]

2018: Evaporation and flow control system for liquid biofuels. At PC2A-CNRS-Univ Lille. Funded by the IRePSE (Institut de Recherche Pluridisciplinaires en Sciences de l’Environnement). [Role: Principal Investigator]

2014: BIOLEUM: Fuels and Chemicals by fast pyrolysis of biomass. Project duration: 2014-2016 at Ghent University (Belgium). Funder: Belgian Federal Science Policy Office (BELSPO).  [Role: Participant]

2010-2013: CLEAN-ICE: Detailed chemical kinetic models for cleaner internal combustion engines. Project duration: 2008-2013 at CNRS Nancy (France). Funder: The European Research Council (ERC).  [Role: Participant]

2007-2008: Study, synthesis and redaction of a database for the fuel systems of modern internal combustion engines. Local project of the University of Da Nang (Vietnam), code: T2008-06-49. [Role: Principal Investigator]

2006-2007: Study and invention of a model of combination and diagnosis of ignition systems for gasoline engines. Local project of the University of Da Nang (Vietnam), code: T2007-06-34. [Role: Principal Investigator]