Karl Chatelain, Ph.D.

Research Scientists

Research Scientist

Research Interests

My current research interests are related to the experimental characterization of hydrogen detonations by laser diagnostics (mainly OH- and NO-LIF), the development of a spectroscopic code to model LIF processes (KAT-LIF code), as well as the numerical simulations of detonations with OpenFOAM. I am also interested in characterizing reactive systems related to carbon-free fuel energy production or related to the transitioning to net-zero carbon emissions.

In 2016, I obtained my Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering on the “Thermal stability of liquid fuels” from the Université Paris-Saclay (now Institut Polytechnique Paris) and my Master in Energy, combustion, and Environment from the Université d’Orléans in 2013. Prior joining KAUST, my research backgrounds include the experimental characterization of different reactive systems and their modeling, via several visiting researcher periods (Caltech and MIT) and a first postdoc at ENSTA Paristech.

Selected Publications


  • ​Ph.D., Processing engineering, ENSTA ParisTech, Université Paris-Saclay, Palaiseau, FRANCE. (2016)
  • M.Sc, Energy and Materials, Université d’Orléans, Orléans, FRANCE. (2013)
  • B.Sc, General Chemistry, Université d’Orléans, Orléans, FRANCE. (2011)

Professional Profile

  • ​2021-present: Research Scientist, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia
  • 2017-2021: Postdoctoral fellow, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia
  • 2016-2017: Researcher (Post-Doctoral), ENSTA ParisTech, France
  • 2014: Visiting Researcher, MIT, Cambridge (MA), USA
  • 2013-2016: Researcher (Ph.D), IFP Energies nouvelles, Rueil-Malmaison, France
  • 2013: Research Assistant (Internship), Caltech, Pasadena (CA), USA
  • 2012: Research Assistant (Internship), Caltech, Pasadena (CA), USA

KAUST Affiliations

  • ​Clean Combustion Research Center
  • Division of Physical Sciences and Engineering​

Research Interests Keywords

Experimental Modeling Detonation Spectroscopy Laser Diagnostics Chemical kinetics ​Combustion