Turbomachinery Laboratory welcomes new faculty member Petersen
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Dr. Eric Petersen has joined the faculty of the Turbomachinery Laboratory. The Turbomachinery Laboratory is jointly operated by Texas A&M University and the Texas Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), the engineering research agency of the State of Texas and a member of The Texas A&M University System. Petersen arrived in College Station in January from the University of Central Florida. Presently, he is an Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M. Petersen's research areas include the ignition and combustion of fuel blends at gas turbine engine pressures and temperatures; investigation of laminar flame speeds of fuel reacting flows; high-temperature chemical kinetics and spectroscopy; advanced additives for composite solid propellants; and nanoparticle additives for enhancing the performance of liquid and solid fuels. To accommodate Petersen's research activities, an expansion of the laboratory is underway, scheduled to be complete in June. The new addition will enable the research of gas dynamics and reacting flows in one of the country's few shock tube testing facilities. The new test area will allow measurements at real gas turbine conditions and the exploration of the reactivity behavior of fuel combinations at gas turbine engine pressures. Petersen's inquests include expanding our abilities to study gaseous fuels and heterogeneous fuels, both liquid and solid, in the shock tube. Also, flame speed experiments to provide better models for fuel flexibility, performance, stability and efficiency. In addition, the research will be used to further develop fundamental understanding of the underlying chemical and physical phenomena of interest to energy and propulsion systems. Additionally, a rocket laboratory is being prepared within the Turbomachinery Lab where novel solid rocket propellants will be developed and evaluated for use in rocket motors and energetics. The rocket lab will also provide diagnostic capabilities for conditions and situations relevant to practical applications.