Mani Sarathy, Ph.D.


Associate Director of Clean Combustion Research Center | Professor of Chemical Engineering

Research Interests

​Professor Sarathy's research interest is in developing sustainable energy technologies with decreased net environmental impact. A major thrust of research is simulating the combustion chemistry of transportation fuels. He develops fundamental chemical kinetic models that can be used to simulate fuel combustion and pollutant formation in energy systems. Engine designers then use these chemical kinetic models to achieve various performance targets using computational simulations. In addition, these models can be used to determine how the chemical structure of a fuel affects pollutant formation. 

Professor Sarathy's research in combustion chemistry modeling includes quantum chemistry based kinetic rate calculations, comprehensive mechanism development, combustion cyberinfrastructure development, computer generated detailed and reduced mechanisms, and simulation of multi-dimensional reacting flows.

In addition, he obtains data from fundamental combustion experiments to elucidate reaction pathways of combustion, and to generate experimental data needed to validate detailed chemical kinetic models. These experimental techniques include perfectly stirred reactors, plug flow reactors, and diffusion flames. The chemistry in these reactors is probed using advanced analytical chemistry techniques such as molecular beam time-of-flight mass spectrometry, laser absorption spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and a variety of gas and liquid chromatography methods.

The goal of Professor Sarathy's research is study conventional and alternative fuels (e.g., biofuels, synthetic fuels, etc.), so the environmental impact of combustion systems can be reduced. He also applies chemical kinetics expertise to study a wide range of chemical engineering systems including biomass energy, catalysis, and drinking water treatment. 

Selected Publications

  • A minimalist functional group (MFG) approach for surrogate fuel formulation
    A.G.A. Jameel, N. Naser, G. Issayev, J. Touitou, M.K. Ghosh, A.-H. Emwas, A. Farooq, S. Do...
    Combustion and Flame, 192, pp. 250-271, (2018)
  • Predicting octane number using nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and artificial neural networks
    A.G.A. Jameel, V.V. Oudenhoven, A.-H. Emwas, and S.M. Sarathy
    Energy Fuels, 32 (5), pp. 6309-6329, (2018)
  • High-pressure limit rate rules for α-H isomerization of hydroperoxyalkylperoxy radicals
    S.Y. Mohamed, A.C. Davis, M.J. Al Rashidi, S.M. Sarathy
    J. Phys. Chem. A,122 (14), pp. 3626-3639, (2018)
  • Unraveling the structure and chemical mechanisms of highly oxygenated intermediates in oxidation of organic compoun...
    Z. Wang, D. Vaida, B. Chen, K. Moshammer, S. Mohammed, H. Wang, S. Sioud, M.Raji, K. Hoing...
    Procedding of the National Academy of Science of the United States of America, (2018)
  • Recent progress in gasoline surrogate fuels
    S.M. Sarathy, A. Farooq, G.T. Kalghatgi
    Progress in Energy and Combustion Science, 65, pp. 67-108, (2018)
  • Chemical kinetic insights into the octane number and octane sensitivity of gasoline surrogate mixtures
    E. Singh, J. Badra, M. Mehl, S. M. Sarathy
    Energy and Fuels, 31, 1945-1960, (2017)
  • Optimized reaction mechanism rate rules for ignition of normal alkanes
    L. Cai, H. Pitsch, S.Y. Mohamed, V. Raman, J. Bugler, H. Curran, S.M. Sarathy
    Combustion and Flame ,173, pp. 468-482, (2016)
  • Lifecycle optimized ethanol-gasoline blends for turbocharged engines
    B. Zhang, S. M. Sarathy
    Applied Energy 181, pp. 38-53, (2016)
  • Compositional effects on the ignition of FACE gasolines
    S.M. Sarathy, G. Kukkadapu, M. Mehl, T. Javed, A. Ahmed, N. Naser
    Combustion and Flame 169, 171-193, (2016)
  • Alcohol combustion chemistry
    S.M. Sarathy, P. Osswald, N. Hansen, K. Kohse-Hoinghaus
    Progress in Energy and Combustion Sciences, 44, pp. 40-102, (2014)


  • Postdoctoral training, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, USA, 2010-2012
  • Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, University of Toronto, Canada, 2010
  • M.S., Chemical Engineering, University of Toronto, Canada, 2006
  • B.S., Environmental Engineering Chemical Specialization, University of Waterloo, Canada, 2004

Scientific and Professional Membership

  • Combustion Institute
  • American Institute of Chemical Engineering
  • Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering


  • NSERC of Canada Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • NSERC of Canada PhD Scholarship
  • EcoTec Founder's Fellowship

KAUST Affiliations

  • Clean Combustion Research Center (CCRC)
  • Division of Physical Sciences and Engineering (PSE)

Research Interests Keywords

​Comprehensive chemical kinetics combustion cyberinfrastructure reaction mechanism reduction chemistry of multi-scale reacting flows