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Dr Louise Olsen-Kettle

PhD in theoretical physics and chemistry, The University of Queensland, Australia; Bachelor of Science (Chemistry), The University of Queensland, Australia; Bachelor of Arts (Mathematics), The University of Queensland, Australia


Louise has a PhD in theoretical and computational physics & chemistry, and has postdoctoral research experience at National Taiwan University and the University of Queensland. She was a computational scientist in the UQ School of Earth Sciences and lectured computational mathematics subjects at UQ. Louiseā€™s research focuses on computational and mathematical modelling in the geosciences, and she specialises in large scale numerical simulations of nonlinear partial differential equations. Her major research interests include materials modelling of damage, failure and fracture, earthquake rupture dynamics, and hydraulic fracturing in coal seam gas operations. Her research provides new understanding in forecasting risk and damage in a range of applications transferable across different industry sectors including oil and gas, mining, construction, composites and manufacturing. In 2014 Louise was awarded an ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher fellowship to quantify the risk of groundwater contamination from hydraulic fracturing in coal seam gas operations in Australia.

Research interests

Geotechnical Engineering

PhD candidate and honours supervision

Higher degrees by research

PhD topics and outlines

Applied mathematics and computational mechanics: We are seeking postgraduate students interested in applied mathematics, computational mechanics, continuum and materials modelling, or damage and solid mechanics. Applications of research include hydraulic fracturing, unconventional reservoir modelling, damage modelling and failure in sedimentary rocks, composite materials and concrete.

Summer research project - Mathematical modelling of batteries: This project will develop models of batteries where porous electrodes are used to increase capacity. Electrochemical reactions involve a change in state which are not easily modelled using conventional methods. The aim is to develop a mathematical model that accounts for the change in electrode geometry and porosity due to electrochemical reactions to help optimise battery design.

Fields of Research

  • Theoretical And Applied Mechanics - 010207
  • Numerical Solution Of Differential And Integral Equations - 010302
  • Civil Geotechnical Engineering - 090501

Teaching areas

Mathematical modelling


Also published as: Olsen-Kettle, Louise; Olsen-Kettle, L.; Olsen-Kettle, L. M.; Olsen-Kettle, Louise Marie
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Recent research grants awarded

  • 2014: Quantifying the risk of groundwater contamination from hydraulic fracturing in coal seam gas operations in Australia. *; ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)

* Chief Investigator

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