Peng Zhao, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Mechanical Engineering Department
330 EC; (248) 370-2214; Fax (248) 370-4416


  • Ph.D. Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Princeton University, 2015
  • B. S. Thermal Science and Energy Engineering, University of Science and Technology of China, 2009 

Research Interests

Combustion and Reacting Flows, Internal Combustion Engines, Energy conversion, Environmental science.

Current Research

My research goal is to bridge fundamental combustion research and advanced engine technology, to ultimately realize the design of high-efficiency, low emission energy systems with hybrid technologies.

  • Simple combustion models for engine knock and mechanistic study of low speed pre-ignition (LSPI)
  • Low temperature combustion and advanced combustion strategy in IC engines
  • Reaction network development, reduction and analysis
  • Chemical looping combustion and catalytic oxidation in automotive aftertreatment systems

Journal Publications

J. Pan, G. Shu, P. Zhao, H. Wei, Z. Chen, “Interactions of flame propagation, auto-ignition and pressure wave during knocking combustion”, Combustion and Flame, doi: 10.1016/j.combustflame.2015.11.030, 2016

J. Pan, P. Zhao*, H. Wei, C.K. Law, “A predictive Livengood-Wu integral for two-stage ignition”, International Journal of Engine Research, doi:10.1177/1468087415619516, 2016.

W. Ji, P. Zhao*, T. He, X. He, A. Farooq, C.K. Law, “On the controlling mechanism of the upper turnover states in the NTC regime”, Combustion and Flame, doi:10.1016/j.combustflame.2015.11.028, 2016

P. Zhao, W. Liang, S. Deng, C.K. Law, “Initiation and propagation of laminar premixed cool flames”, Fuel, 166, 477-487, 2016.

S. Deng, P. Zhao, M. E. Mueller, C. K. Law, “Stabilization of laminar nonpremixed DME/air coflow flames at elevated temperatures and pressures”, Combustion and Flame, 162(23), 4471-4478, 2015.

S. Deng, P. Zhao, M. E. Mueller, C. K. Law, “Autoignition-affected stabilization of laminar non-premixed DME/air jet flames”, Combustion and Flame, 162 (9), 3437-3445, 2015.

P. Zhao, S. Nackman, C.K. Law, “On the application of betweenness centrality in chemical network analysis: computational diagnostics and model reduction”, Combustion and Flame, 162 (8), 2991-2998, 2015.

P. Zhao, W. Yuan, H. Sun, Y. Li, A. Kelley, X. Zheng, C.K. Law, “Laminar flame speeds, counterflow ignition, and kinetic modeling of the butene isomers”, Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, 309-316, 2015.

S. Deng, P. Zhao, D. Zhu, C.K. Law, “NTC-affected ignition and low-temperature flames in nonpremixed DME/air counterflow”, Combustion and Flame, 161(8), 1993-1997, 2014.

Z. Qu, Z. Liu, X. Wang, P. Zhao, “Finite analytic numerical method for solving two-dimensional auasi-Laplace equation," Numerical Methods for Partial Differential Equations, 30(6), 1755-1769, 2014.

P. Zhao, C.K. Law, “The role of global and detailed kinetics in the first-stage ignition delay in NTC-affected phenomena,” Combustion and Flame, 160, 2352-2358, 2013.

C.K. Law, P. Zhao, “NTC-affected ignition in non-premixed counterflow," Combustion and Flame, 159(3), 1044-1054, 2012.

Teaching Experience

  • Introduction to thermal Engineering (EGR250)
  • Energy system analysis and design (ME456)
  • Combustion processes (ME555)