Dr John Knight
Research Fellow, Department of Environmental Sciences
C81 - ATP - The Biomedical Building
The University of Sydney
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Dr John Knight is a Research Fellow in the Department of Environmental Sciences. He is an applied Mathematician with a Ph.D. in mathematics from the Australian National University, and he worked with the late John Philip and others at the CSIRO Centre for Environmental Mechanics and its successors. Most of his research has been modelling heat and mass transfer in the natural environment, in particular the flow of water, gas, solutes and heat in soils and other porous media. He uses finite difference numerical methods or analytical methods such as Laplace transforms as appropriate. He is an author of key publications on the sizes and shapes of the measurement volumes of instruments that use time domain reflectometry or heat pulse methods to measure soil water content.
Dr Knight's main project is to model the release of nitrous oxide from pastures and fields of crops. After rainwater fills pores in the surface of the soil, bacteria use up all of the oxygen and then emit nitrous oxide, which escapes into the atmosphere as the water drains or evaporates. The nitrous oxide ultimately becomes a greenhouse gas. The output from the model will be compared to the measurements of nitrous oxide concentrations in the air above the soil.
Agronomy, horticulture and precision agriculture; Climate Change