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Dr Luke Connell – Group Leader

Luke has a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Queensland. He has over 30 years research experience in modelling and field characterization of fluid flow in the sub-surface and more than 80 publications on a wide range of modelling and experimental problems. His research is focused on gas migration processes within coal seam and shale reservoirs and coupled flow and geomechanical processes.

Dr Zhejun Pan – Team Leader

Zhejun has a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Oklahoma State University, USA. His research is focused on gas storage and flow behaviour in unconventional gas reservoirs, including coal, shale and tight sandstone. His work combines experimental, mathematical and numerical methods, and applies thermodynamics, fluid dynamics and rock mechanics from laboratory to field scale. His research interests also include coal mine gas drainage, enhanced gas production and CO2 storage.


Michael Camilleri – Senior Research Technician

Michael manages the laboratories of the Unconventional Gas Reservoir Engineering Team. Michael’s skills and expertise include pressure vessel and equipment design, LabVIEW programming, electronics, 3D design (Autodesk), data processing, automation, instrumentation plumbing (Swagelok), complex sample recovery and preparation, CNC and conventional machining and welding. His work has been acknowledged through numerous industry awards.

Deasy Heryanto – Engineer

Deasy holds a Bachelor in Chemical Engineering and Science from The University of Melbourne. Her skills include chemical analysis utilizing various instruments and techniques, such as ion chromatography, gas chromatography, and spectrometry, experimental rock characterisation, and data analysis.

Dr Meng Lu – Principal Research Engineer

Meng holds a PhD in Aeronautics/Aerospace Engineering from Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, China. Meng’s research is focused on transport mechanisms in porous rocks and various fundamental issues in relation to reservoir engineering, especially with respect to gas production in unconventional reservoirs. His research interests also include CO2-sequestration in geological formations and mechanical properties of rocks.

Nicholas Lupton – Reservoir Engineer

Nick holds a Masters in Petroleum Engineering from UNSW. His experience includes laboratory based research involving core analysis, adsorption/diffusion studies, and investigating  microbial gas generation under reservoir conditions. He also undertakes research examining groundwater impacts from unconventional gas production and onshore gas prospectivity using numerical simulation, and has been involved in enhanced coalbed methane field studies.

Dr Regina Sander – Research Engineer

Regina has a PhD in Petroleum Engineering from UNSW, Sydney. She has 10+ years experience in unconventional gas engineering and its economics, in particular coal seam gas and shale gas. Regina’s research interests include enhanced recovery and storage processes in unconventional reservoirs, coal mine safety and fugitive emissions management, as well as impacts of unconventional gas production on groundwater.

David Down – Research Technician

Dave has an extensive and varied background in electronics and mechanical solutions across all industries. This enables Dave to balance old school fundamentals with the latest technology to ensure the laboratory is world class. With a strong focus on Health, Safety and the Environment, Dave is always considering how to make operations safer and improve our science outcomes.