Our People

Team Leader

Associate Professor Ali Abbas Associate Professor Ali Abbas

Postgraduate Students

Muhamad Hafiz Abd Rahim - PhD Candidate
Hafiz is interested in the use of a waste product (crude glycerol) generated from biodiesel industry to produce lovastatin, a cholesterol-lowering drug. To do this, Hafiz is looking at ways to convert crude glycerol biosynthetically using fungi. It has been long considered that fungi are the main producers of these kinds of metabolites. For example, medically important peptides, such as penicillin, insulin, and growth factors are mostly synthesized and produced by these organisms through fermentation.

Hussein Oubani - PhD Candidate
Hussein has a Bachelor of chemistry and a Master of Philosophy (MpH) in the field of crystallization process control. Hussein is currently conducting his research on the hydrolysis of cellulose by functionalized porous carbon. His research focus is the development of porous carbons with different textural properties, functionalization of carbon supports and optimization of the cellulose hydrolysis process.

Abdul Qadir - PhD Candidate
Abdul's research is on the integration of solar thermal systems for cooling and power generation applications. He aims at developing a novel modular adsorption cooling device powered by solar energy. He is also working on a techno-economic feasibility on the use of solar energy in carbon capture and storage (CCS) applications. He also has strong interests in desiccant cooling systems and heat and mass transfer.
Thesis Project: Modular solar powered adsorption cooling device.
MSc Mechanical Engineering - Masdar Institute of Science and Technology
BEng (Honours) Mechanical Engineering - University of Nottingham

Aldric Tumilar - PhD Candidate
Aldric's research is concerned with the techno-economics of biomass conversion processes. Aldric's work focuses on rice husk-to-bioethanol and algae-to-oil processes and benchmarking these against NREL models.

Dia Milani - PhD Candidate
Dia's research aims at developing sustainable approaches/technologies to address water shortage problems by exploiting the moisture naturally available in the atmosphere and converting it to liquid freshwater. The focus is currently on development of a safe and environmental friendly dehumidification system. The energy demand for the dehumidification process is the bottleneck and is proposed to be met by solar renewable sources.

Hanan Hasan - PhD Candidate
Hanan's research is focused on the metabolic engineering of fungus to produce cholesterol reducing family of drugs. The aim of his work is to construct complete metabolic pathways to produce the molecule(s) of interest such that the production is carried out biosynthetically in its entirety. Through this research Hanan hopes to understand more about the fundamental metabolism of fungi and to then optimise the production through systems biology approaches.

Alan Tomlinson - PhD Candidate
The research Alan is undertaking aims at understanding success and failure in innovative Australian resource processing projects. The work is based on fundamental analysis of 67 resource transformation projects valued at over $100 million, over an 18 year period. The research outcome will lead to a model of project investment potential, based on public domain data.

Mona Hamad - PhD Candidate

Mehek Akmal Haq - PhD Candidate


Manop Charoenchaitrakool (Kiang)
Manop Charoenchaitrakool (Kiang) graduated with Bachelor of Engineering and PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of New South Wales, Australia. He is an academic staff at the Department of Chemical Engineering, Kasetsart University, Thailand. His research focuses are mainly on the dissolution rate enhancement of poorly water-soluble drugs using dense CO2 technology, the precipitation by gas anti-solvent process and the supercritical fluid extraction. Currently, he has received the 2012 Endeavour Research Fellowship to conduct a 6-month research project with Dr. Ali Abbas and Assoc/Prof.Dr. Fariba Dehghani. His research topic is the preparation of alginate beads loaded with probiotics via a spinning disk reactor. The aim of this research is to improve the survivability of probiotic organisms in acidic conditions.

Sophie Solchenbach
Sophie's project aims at understanding the metabolism of Aspergillus Terrus, a cholesterol drug producing fungus. To do this, Sophie is building a metabolic pathway model to better understand the metabolic reaction network as well as the role of culture media in drug biosynthesis.

Bernadeth Antonio

Mobin Arab

Zhengxiong Li


Manisha Dhanrajani
Hari Athitha Jeyaseelan
Mengyu Wang
Helen Wu
Harry Manoli
Johnathan Mann


Postgraduate Students

Nathalie Bou Karam (Now with Energy Resouces Consulting)
Angayar Pavanasam

Omid Jam (Now with Energy Resouces Consulting)
Reza Alaeddini
Jose Korath

Undergraduate Students

Hee-Chan Jang (MIPPS scholar)
Manisha Dhanrajani
James Greer (2011 Poster award)
Emma Monks
Jason Wong
Laurence Young

Thomas Booby (MIPPS scholar)
Jonathan Trevor (MIPPS scholar)
Prue Hatcher (now with Evans & Peck)
Ishan Sane
Ulysses Luther (now with James Hardey) 2010 Poster award

Kate Macfarlane (MIPPS scholar)
Basil Anikin
Binfeng Zhang
Wei Jin Leng
Moosa Al Faqir

Stevani Kho (MIPPS scholar)
Mehdi Hassani (now with FMG Global)
Perry Johnson (now at the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineeing - Sydney University)


Linda Winstanley - 2011 (now at Loughborough University)
Irene Rubalcaba - 2010 (now at KEO International Consultants)
Sung-chan (Samuel) choi - 2010
Christian Roth - 2009
David Widenski - 2008 (now at Louisiana State University)