New Website!

We have come up with a new combustion and engine group website!

More to come...

Jaguar Land Rover invests in new 'Centres of Excellence for Engine Combustion Research'

Professors Martin Davy and Richard Stone, from the Department of Engineering Science, will lead a new project on compression ignition in diesel engines thanks to a major investment by Jaguar Land Rover

The £1m investment will be shared equally, between the University of Oxford and University College London (UCL), to support the development of new research facilities and fund two 5-year study programmes.
The research projects will use the latest physical, optical and simulation resources to explore advances in spark and compression ignition combustion, targeting higher engine efficiency.

More details in

Fast-NGC at the Royal Institution

Fast-NGC at the Royal Institution

Dr. Felix Leach presenting at the Royal Institution

On 25th April 2017, Dr Felix Leach presented the group's most recent project 'Fast-NGC, advanced fuel flow measurement' at the Preparing for the Grand Challenge event organised by the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) at the Royal Institution in London.

Felix presented preliminary work on Next Generation Coriolis Meters, measuring fuel flow in an individual diesel injector at pressures of up to 1000 bar.  This project was an £80k, 3-month (APC) funded feasibility study.

Our preliminary results attracted considerable attention at the event and we are hopeful that future collaborations and progress with this exciting idea will result. Watch this space!

Time-resolved gas thermometry by laser-induced grating spectroscopy with a high-repetition rate laser system

Our latest work on high-speed temperature measurement using LITGS has now been published in Experiments in Fluids and is available online. Congratulations to Felix, Cyril, and the Oxford and Brighton teams.

New publication on PN measurements on a highly boosted GDI Engine

New publication on PN measurements on a highly boosted GDI Engine

ULTRABOOST engine installation at the University of Bath

Oxford's latest work on PN measurements has now been published in the International Journal of Engine Research. The work, which can be accessed here, focuses on PN emissions from a very highly boosted GDI engine (the ULTRABOOST engine at the University of Bath).

Highly boosted GDI engines offer significant potential fuel economy benefits. Our study characterised particulate emissions from an extreme example of this type of engine using a Cambustion DMS 500 particle analyser. The very small particles sizes recorded have important implications for future aftertreatment design and the potential impacts of pollution from these engines.

A subset of this work was presented at the 2017 Cambridge Particle Meeting by Oxford researcher, and lead author on this work, Dr. Felix Leach. Congratulations to Felix and his co-authors and collaborators.

UnICEG Presentations now available

Presentations from 2017 onwards UnICEG meetings have now been made available on our website | link.

Not dead yet!

On the 12th August this year, the Economist magazine led with a cover story entitled titled “Roadkill: The death of the internal combustion engine”. Oxford Combustion and Engine’s Group Researcher Dr Felix Leach felt that this deliberately provocative article shouldn’t go unanswered and penned a reply.  Today, the Economist published an edited version of Dr Leach’s letter, which has been co-signed by 19 other leading UK academics in the field including the Group’s own Dr Martin Davy and Professor Richard Stone.  The Economist magazine boasts an average weekly circulation of 1.5 million and 10.5 million online readers per month. Accordingly, we believe that Dr Leach’s letter will have a high impact and that it is an important contribution to the debate on the future of the combustion engine. Noting that the magazine has edited Dr Leach’s original letter for publication, we present the full submitted text and the signatory list below.

Dear Editor,

You lead with the Death of the Internal Combustion Engine (ICE). We could not disagree more. Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) are part of the future, clearly, however credible studies (e.g. IEA World Energy Outlook) suggest that 90% of ground transportation energy will continue to be from hydrocarbon-based fuels (both renewable and traditional sources) in 2040.  In addition, current electrical generation capacities do not come close to meeting the needs of an all-electric fleet and battery production is not emission free.  Road freight, agriculture/construction vehicles, and long-distance vehicles (e.g. coaches) will continue to be powered by ICEs, there is little other choice. When you refer to a ban on “new cars completely reliant on ICEs”, many such vehicles will still contain an ICE as a hybrid. The ICE of today is a modern machine with a huge number of recent technological innovations both to increase its efficiency and decrease its emissions. Further advances in ICE technology will enable near pollutant-free mobility and future fuels offer sustainable decarbonisation strategies.

The demonisation of the ICE makes good politics, but poor engineering; in order to reduce both CO2 and local pollutant (e.g. NOx and soot) emissions, there should be significant attention focused not only on ICEs of the future, but on electrical power generation, domestic heating, rail electrification, and well-to-wheel emissions.  If we cease to invest in the ICE now, there is a significant danger of opportunity loss if BEV technology does not meet expectations on time.

The Internal Combustion Engine will continue to be part of the solution for the foreseeable future.

Dr Felix Leach
Research Fellow and Tutor
Keble College, University of Oxford

Co-signatories (alphabetical order)

  • Dr Sam Akehurst
    Reader in Automotive Engineering,
    University of Bath
  • Prof Chris Brace
    Professor of Automotive Propulsion,
    University of Bath
  • Dr-Ing Hartwig Busch
    Director Applied Low Carbon Technology Centre
    Coventry University
  • Prof Alasdair Cairns
    Professor of Automotive Propulsion,
    University of Nottingham
  • Dr Martin Davy
    Associate Professor of Engineering Science
    Exeter College, University of Oxford
  • Prof Manolis Gavaises
    Professor in Fluid Dynamics,
    City, University of London
  • Prof Morgan Heikal
    Ricardo Professor of Automotive Engineering
    University of Brighton
  • Prof Mark Linne
    Professor of Combustion Engines,
    University of Edinburgh
  • Prof Paul Shayler FREng
    Professor of Mechanical Engineering,
    University of Nottingham
  • Prof Richard Stone
    Professor of Engineering Science
    Somerville College, University of Oxford
  • Prof Alexander Taylor FREng
    Professor of Fluid Mechanics,
    Imperial College London
  • Prof James Turner
    Professor of Engines and Energy Systems,
    University of Bath
  • Prof Miroslaw Wyszynski
    Professor of Novel Vehicle Technology and Applied Thermodynamics
    University of Birmingham
  • Prof Hongming Xu
    Professor of Energy and Automotive Engineering,
    University of Birmingham
  • Prof Hua Zhao FREng
    Professor and Vice-Dean (Research),
    Brunel University

Additional Signatories (post-publication)

  • Dr Nwabueze Emekwuru
    Senior Lecturer in Mechanical and Automotive Engineering
    Coventry University
  • Dr Mansour Qubeissi
    Senior Lecturer in Thermo-fluids
    Coventry University
  • Dr Edward Richardson
    Associate Professor in Engineering and the Environment
    University of Southampton

Three new Oxford publications at SAENA ICE2017

Three new Oxford publications at SAENA ICE2017

Oxford Group in Capri (Left to Right) Blane Scott, Chris Willman, Felix Leach, Richard Stone

Oxford Combustion and Engines Group members Dr Chris Willman, Dr Felix Leach, Blane Scott and Prof. Richard Stone are this week (w/c 11th September) presenting three new publications at ICE2017 -- SAE Naples' 13th International Conference on Engines and Vehicles held on the island of Capri.

Dr. Willman will present his and Blane Scott's work on "In-Cylinder Temperature Measurements Using Laser Induced Grating Spectroscopy and Two-Colour PLIF", SAE Technical Paper No. 2017-24-0045: Link.

Prof. Stone is presenting Wednesday's Keynote presentation entitled, " Optical Techniques that can be Applied to Investigate GDI Engine Combustion", SAE Technical Paper No. 2017-24-0046: Link.

Dr Leach is presenting his and Riyaz Ismail's study, "Comparing the Effect of Fuel/Air Interactions in a Modern High-Speed Light-Duty Diesel Engine", SAE Technical Paper No. 2017-24-0075: Link.

Prof. Richard Stone gives Keynote at SAENA ICE2017

Prof. Richard Stone gives Keynote at SAENA ICE2017

Prof. Richard Stone in action at ICE2017, Capri

Prof. Richard Stone details his recent experiences of "Optical Techniques that can be Applied to Investigate GDI Engine Combustion" in Wednesday's Keynote speech at SAENA ICE2017, Capri. The written paper can be found here.


Congratulations to DPhil candidates, Riyaz Ismail and Nick Papaioannou who have both successfully completed their Oxford  "Confirmation of Status" exams.

Congratulations also to Xiaohang 'Leo' Fang who has passed his "Transfer of Status" exam and who is now officially a DPhil Candidate.

Matthew Greenwood Award for Maruthi Malladi

Congratulations to new group member Maruthi Malladi on receiving the Department of Engineering Science's inaugural Matthew Greenwood Award. Full details can be found here

Three new Oxford Combustion & Engines Group publications at SAE WCX18

Three new Oxford Combustion & Engines Group publications at SAE WCX18

Oxford team at WCX18 (Left to Right: Martin Davy, Joe Camm, Felix Leach, Louis Nicholson)

The Combustion & Engines Group were pleased to present three new works at the 2018 SAE World Congress Experience held in Detroit. The publications were (click on doi link to go to SAE Mobilus)

Leach, F., Henry, M., Zhou, F., Tombs, M., and Davy, M.H, “A New Method for Measuring Fuel Flow in an Individual Injection in Real Time”, SAE Technical Paper 2018-01-0285, SAE World Congress, Detroit, MI, USA, April 10-12, 2018, doi:10.4271/2018-01-0285

Nicholson, L., Fang, X., Camm, J., and Davy, M.H.,“Comparison of Transient Diesel Spray Breakup Between Two Computational Fluid Dynamics Codes”, SAE Technical Paper 2018-01-0307, SAE World Congress, Detroit, MI, USA, April 10-12, 2018, doi:10.4271/2018-01-0307

Camm, J, Fang, X., Nicholson, L., Doherty, L., McGilvray, M., and Davy, M. H.,  “The Oxford Cold Driven Shock Tube (CDST) for Fuel Spray and Chemical Kinetics Research”, SAE Technical Paper 2018-01-0222, SAE World Congress, Detroit, MI, USA ,April 10-12, 2018, doi:10.4271/2018-01-0222

Oxford academics support #HugYourEngine at WCX18

Oxford academics support #HugYourEngine at WCX18

Sometimes there are just not words enough!

Thanks to Kelly Senecal for his continued advocacy for the ICE. We were delighted to contribute at WCX18. Follow the hashtag to learn more  #HugYourEngine

New UnICEG presentations available

The presentations from our recent UnICEG meeting on "Thermal Management and Exhaust Aftertreatment" are now available for download here

Congratulations Johannes

Congratulations Johannes

Johannes and Richard celebrating in Richard's 1922 Vauxhall Tourer

Congratulations to Group member Johannes Mutzke on the successful completion of his Viva Voce examination last month. Johannes' thesis work on "Abnormal Combustion in Spark Ignition Engines" was supervised by Prof Richard Stone and examined by Prof Jamie Turner of the University of Bath

New article: Engine-out emissions from a modern high speed diesel engine - the importance of Nozzle Tip Protrusion

We are pleased to announce that a new publication from the Group, "Engine-out emissions from a modern high speed diesel engine - the importance of Nozzle Tip Protrusion" has been published today in Applied Energy. Well done Felix and Riyaz. The paper is available for the next 50 days as a free download from the following LINK

New Academic Partnership: LOGE

We are please to announce that we have recently joined the LOGE Academic Partnership Program. LOGE software is internationally recognised for analysing and simulating complex chemistry processes for engineering applications. Watch out for some exciting new publications linking Oxford combustion models to LOGE software later in the year.

Open Seminar August 6th, Kelly Senecal, PhD., Co-Founder and Owner of Convergent Science

We are pleased to be hosting on August 6th 2018 the co-founder and owner of Convergent Science (creators of the CONVERGE CFD software package) Kelly Senecal, PhD, who will give a seminar presentation entitled, "Shifting the Paradigm of Combustion Simulations in IC Engines and Gas Turbines".

The Seminar is free and open to all. If you would like to attend please email to register. Light refreshments will be served following the event and there will be an opportunity to chat informally with Dr Senecal. 

Air Quality: Group's research featured in the Oxford Mail

The Group's ongoing study on NOx emissions from Oxford buses has been featured in the Oxford Mail. Read more about the research on our Departmental web site, link,  or view the original Oxford Mail article here