Skip to main content


William Roberts

Director, CCRC
Professor of Mechanical Engineering


​William Roberts holds a PhD from University of Michigan and served as Professor of Mechanical Engineering at North Carolina State University before joining KAUST in 2012. He is currently the Director of the CCRC. Prof. Roberts' research interests include experimental combustion, propulsion, and laser-based optical diagnostics for reacting flows. Of fundamental interest is the complex interaction between the various length and velocity scales in turbulent flows and the chemical kinetics associated with combustion. His focus is on understanding these interactions in canonical flames, using advanced techniques to measure scalar and vector quantities of interest. He is currently building a unique high-pressure combustion capability at KAUST which will be used to understand combustion phenomena, particularly formation of pollutants such as soot, occurring in practical combustion hardware such as gas turbines and internal combustion engines. Prof. Roberts has close ties to industrial projects with funded research programs with Saudi Aramco, Saudi Electric Company, General Electric, and Boeing.​​