Student Focus: Fethi Khaled

Fethi Khaled is a mechanical engineering Ph.D. student in the University’s Clean Combustion Research Center (CCRC). Photo by Raheena Abdurehim

​-By David Murphy, KAUST News

Fethi Khaled describes himself as a hardworking individual who makes the most out of any given situation. Khaled, who is a mechanical engineering Ph.D. student in the University's Clean Combustion Research Center (CCRC), sees himself as an academic who is determined to excel in his research. He is a member of the Chemical Kinetics and Laser Sensors Laboratory under the supervision of Professor Aamir Farooq.

Khaled's research focuses on the science of combustion and how fuels burn, with a specific interest in fossil fuel energy and other energy sources such as solar energy. His research goal is centered on making fuel combustion a cleaner, safer and more efficient energy source.

"I think my research interests are heading towards the field of engine design optimization, and I believe I can contribute one day in inventing new combustion engine modes that would be more efficient, less or even zero pollutant," Khaled outlined.

Khaled grew up in a small village in southern Tunisia called Oued Esseder, and from a young age was fascinated by machines and engines and the science behind them. This fascination stayed with him into adulthood, and in 2013 he completed his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering at the Ecole Polytechnique de Tunisie, La Marsa.

The path to KAUST and future goals

KAUST first appeared on his radar in 2012 when Professor Slim Alouini visited the Ecole polytechnique de Tunisie and gave a presentation on KAUST and its research goals and mission. Khaled credits this talk and the active, ambitious and dynamic atmosphere found on campus as being some of the chief reasons in his decision to study here.

"I was introduced to the world of research that I never imagined or thought about before coming to KAUST. I have had the opportunity to attend many conferences within the Kingdom and abroad and I have gotten in touch with the best researchers in my field here. I've also attended some of the best lectures in my life, such as lectures regarding the internal combustion engine with Professor Bengt Johansson," he emphasized.

"I believe that the future of KAUST is going to be even brighter than what anyone here realizes. I have spent five years here already and I can tell that the exponential development will only increase further in the coming years," Khaled concluded.

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