Assoc Prof Rowena Ball
I am an applied mathematician and physical chemist with broad research expertise in nonlinear and complex dynamical systems. My ARC Future Fellowship is entitled - “The charXive challenge and the clean coal quest: thermokinetic principles and methods for capturing and sequestering carbon dioxide." The next 50 years will be the era during which the world's fuels must be decarbonised. Endex thermoreactive principles, which I co-invented in the mid 1990s, are providing a novel technology for separating carbon from fuels and flue gases. I am developing a suite of Endex decarbonation technologies in collaboration with an industry partner, Calix Ltd, and with collaborators from Imperial College London, the University of Leeds, and CanMet Energy. Endex principles also underpin carbon capture from the atmosphere and have been used by nature for millions of years: the mechanism behind thermal decomposition of biomass is an Endex thermochemical oscillator that governs the distribution of carbon between the global solid black carbon reservoir and the atmospheric CO2 reservoir. My research is elucidating this mechanism.
The origin of life, Nonlinear and complex dynamical systems, Indigenous science, Endex thermoreactive systems, Thermochemical instabilities, Exergy analysis, Entropy generation analysis, Carbon sequestration via charcoal, Global carbon cycles, Railways and trains, Country pub lunches.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2021, 'Does Stochasticity Favour Complexity in a Prebiotic Peptide-Micelle System?', Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere, vol. 51, pp. 259 - 271.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2020, 'Anomalous thermal fluctuation distribution sustains proto-metabolic cycles and biomolecule synthesis', Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, vol. 22, pp. 971-975.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2019, 'The Power Without the Glory: Multiple Roles of Hydrogen Peroxide in Mediating the Origin of Life', Astrobiology, vol. 19, no. 5, pp. 675-684.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2017, 'Toy trains, loaded dice and the origin of life: dimerization on mineral surfaces under periodic drive with Gaussian inputs', Royal Society Open Science, vol. 4, no. 11, pp. 170141/1-17.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2016, 'Thiosulfate-hydrogen peroxide redox oscillator as pH driver for ribozyme activity in the RNA world', Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere, vol. 46, no. 1, pp. 133-147.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2016, 'The Life Story of Hydrogen Peroxide III: Chirality and Physical Effects at the Dawn of Life', Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere, vol. 46, no. 1, pp. 81-93.
- Ball, R 2015, 'Using the second law first: Improving the thermodynamic efficiency of carbon dioxide separation from gas streams in an Endex calcium looping system', Applied Thermal Engineering, vol. 74, pp. 194-201.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2015, 'The life story of hydrogen peroxide II: a periodic pH and thermochemical drive for the RNA world', Journal of the Royal Society Interface, vol. 12, no. 109, pp. 20150366-20150366.
- Rowena Ball, 2015. STEM the gap: Science belongs to us mob too. Australian Quarterly (Ed. Grant Mills) vol. 86, Jan–Mar 2015, pages 13–19.
- Ball, R 2014, 'Entropy generation analyses of Endex and conventional calcium looping processes for CO2 capture', Fuel, vol. 127, pp. 202-211.
- Ball, R & Brindley, J 2014, 'Hydrogen peroxide thermochemical oscillator as driver for primordial RNA replication', Journal of the Royal Society Interface, vol. 11, no. 95, pp. 20131052-20131052.
- Ball, R 2014, 'Regulation of atmospheric carbon dioxide by vegetation fires', Climate Research, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 125-133.
- Ball, R 2014, 'Endex stabilization of thermally unstable and explosive liquid phase systems', 24th Institution of Chemical Engineers Symposium on Hazards 2014, Curran Associates, Inc., New York, USA., pp. 474-486.
- Rowena Ball (2014). Women’s careers:
Out with the linear pipeline and in with the new nonlinear paradigm.
Text of invited address given at the International Women’s Day Award ceremony at University House, ANU, 7 March 2014, posted at
- Ball, R 2013, 'Thermal oscillations in the decomposition of organic peroxides: Identification of a hazard, utilization, and suppression', Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, vol. 52, no. 2, pp. 922-933.
- Ball, R & Gray, B 2013, 'Thermal instability and runaway criteria: the dangers of disregarding dynamics', Process Safety and Environmental Protection, vol. 91, no. 3, pp. 221-226.
- Sullivan, A & Ball, R 2012, 'Thermal decomposition and combustion chemistry of cellulosic biomass', Atmospheric environment, vol. 47, pp. 133-141.
- Ball, R. and Gray, B.F. (2012) Thermal instability and runaway criteria: the dangers of disregarding dynamics. Preprint at
http://anu.academia.edu/RowenaBall. Summary: Two published examples of incorrect and dangerous thermal runaway criteria are exposed. Stability theory has been used by chemical engineers to assay reactive thermal hazard for sixty years - why has this knowledge been completely ignored by the authors of those works? They claim to specify thermal 'safety' criteria but, to the contrary, they are seriously putting human lives at risk.
- Plouffe, P, Gamage McEvoy, J, Ball, R et al 2012, 'Object-oriented simulation of an Endex reactor for separation of carbon dioxide from flue emissions', Computers in Chemical Engineering, vol. 40, pp. 213-222.
- R. Ball, P. Fennell, (2012) Second law analyses of Endex and conventional calcium looping reactors. (Working paper)
- Ball, R 2011, 'Oscillatory thermal instability and the Bhopal disaster', Process Safety and Environmental Protection, vol. 89, no. 5, pp. 317-322.
- Ball, R 2011, 'Thermal relaxation oscillations in liquid organic peroxides', International Journal of Energetic Materials and Chemical Propulsion, vol. 10, no. 6, pp. 523-540.
- Ball R (2011). Oscillatory thermal instability - the Bhopal disaster and liquid bombs. http://arxiv.org/abs/1105.3778. Invited chapter for a forthcoming book "Nanotechnology Research and The Millenium Development Goals", editor Thomas Faunce, to be published by Pan Stanford.
- Ball, R (2011). Oscillatory thermal instability and the Bhopal disaster. Accepted 08 June 2011 by Process Safety and Environmental Protection, preprint available at http://arxiv.org/abs/1007.1487.
- Ball, R & Jones, J 2010, 'The Carbon Sequestration Capacity of Trees Expressed in Monetary Terms.', The Open Thermodynamics Journal, vol. 4, pp. 220-221.
- Ball R and Gray BF (1995,1996) Reactor system design, Australian Provisional Patents PO0176 and PN3208.
- Ball, R & Sceats, M 2010, 'Separation of carbon dioxide from flue emissions using Endex principles', Fuel, vol. 89, no. 10, pp. 2750-2759.
- Ball, R 2009, 'High Confinement at Low Power Input in Magnetic Fusion Plasmas: Analysis of Trade-offs Using Stability Theory', IEEE Conference on Decision and Control and Chinese Control Conference (CDC/CCC 2009), IEEE Inc, DOI: 10.1109/CDC.2009.5399587, pp. 297-302.
- Ball, R 2008, 'The Case of the Trapped Singularities', Complexity International, vol. 12, pp. 1-21.
- Ball, R 2008, 'Combustion of Biomass as a Global Carbon Sink', The Open Thermodynamics Journal, vol. 2, pp. 106-108.
- Stals, L, Numata, R & Ball, R 2008, 'Stability Analysis of Time Stepping for Prolonged Plasma Fluid Simulations', SIAM Journal on Scientific Computing, vol. 31, no. 2, pp. 961-986.
- Ball, R 2007, 'Distilled Turbulence. A Reduced Model for Confirnement Transitions in Magnetic Fusion Plasmas', in Jim Denier & Jorgen Fredericksen (ed.), Frontiers in Turbulence and Coherent Structures: proceedings of the COSNet/CSIRO Workshop on Turbulence and Coherent Structures in Fluids, Plasmas and Nonlinear Media, World Scientific Publishing Company, New Jersey, USA, pp. 395-414.
- Numata, R, Ball, R & Dewar, R 2007, 'Nonlinear Simulation of Drift Wave Turbulence', in Jim Denier & Jorgen Fredericksen (ed.), Frontiers in Turbulence and Coherent Structures: proceedings of the COSNet/CSIRO Workshop on Turbulence and Coherent Structures in Fluids, Plasmas and Nonlinear Media, World Scientific Publishing Company, New Jersey, USA, pp. 431-442.
- Ball, R & Holmes, P 2007, 'Dynamical Systems, Stability, and Chaos', in Jim Denier & Jorgen Fredericksen (ed.), Frontiers in Turbulence and Coherent Structures: proceedings of the COSNet/CSIRO Workshop on Turbulence and Coherent Structures in Fluids, Plasmas and Nonlinear Media, World Scientific Publishing Company, New Jersey, USA, pp. 1-28.
- Numata, R, Ball, R & Dewar, R 2007, 'Bifurcation in Electrostatic Resistive Drift Wave Turbulence', Physics of Plasmas, vol. 14, pp. 102312 1-8.
- Ball, R & Horton, W 2006, 'Dynamics of Edge Oscillations and Core Relaxations in Harness', International Atomic Energy Agency Fusion Energy Conference (FEC 2006), Conference Organising Committee, Website, pp. TP/p6-24.
- Ball, R & Horton, W 2006, 'A Model for Coupled Edge-Core Dynamics', International Congress on Plasma Physics (ICCP 2006), ed. Anatoly Zagorodny, Olha Kocherga, Conference Organising Committee, unknown.
- Ball, R 2005, 'Kolmogorov Cascade', in Alwyn Scott (ed.), Encyclopedia of Nonlinear Science, Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, New York, pp. 1-3.
- Ball, R 2005, 'Fairy Rings of Mushrooms', in Alwyn Scott (ed.), Encyclopedia of Nonlinear Science, Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, New York, pp. 1-3.
- Ball, R 2005, 'Dynamical Systems Modelling of Turbulence-shear Flow Interactions in Magnetized Fusion Plasmas', Journal of Physics: Conference Series(online), vol. 7, pp. 191-202.
- Ball, R 2005, 'Singularity theory', in Alwyn Scott (ed.), Encyclopedia of Nonlinear Science, Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, New York, pp. 813-815.
- Ball, R 2005, 'Trapped Singularities in a Dynamical Model for Plasma Confinement Transitions', National Conference on Nonlinear Systems and Dynamics (NCNSD 2005), ed. Conference Program Committee, Ujal Halder, Kharagpur.
- Ball, R 2005, 'Suppression of Turbulence at Low Power Input in a Model for Plasma Confinement Transitions', Physics of Plasmas, vol. 12, no. 9, pp. 090904-1-8.
- Horton, W, Wong, H, Morrison, P et al 2005, 'Temperature Gradient Driven Electron Transport in NSTX and Tore Supra', Nuclear Fusion, vol. 45, pp. 976-985.
- Ball, R, McIntosh, A & Brindley, J 2004, 'Feedback Process in Cellulose Thermal Decomposition: Implications for Fire-retarding Strategies and Treatment', Combustion Theory and Modelling, vol. 8, pp. 281-291.
- Ball, R 2004, 'The Case of the Trapped Singularitites', Asia-Pacific Complex Systems Conference (Complex 2004), ed. Russel Stonier, Qinglong Han, Wei Li, Central Queensland University, QLD, pp. 266-286.
- Ball, R, ed., 2003, Nonlinear Dynamics: From Lasers to Butterflies: selected lectures from 15th Canberra International Physics Summer School, Australian National University, 21 January-1 February 2002, World Scientific Publishing Company, Singapore.
- Kendl, A, Scott, B, Ball, R et al 2003, 'Turbulent Edge Structure Formation in Complex Configurations', Physics of Plasmas, vol. 10, pp. 3684-3691.
- Ball, R, Dewar, R & Sugama, H 2003, 'Bifurcation and Metamorphosis of Plasma Turbulence-Shear Flow Dynamics: The Path to the Top of the Hill', in I.S. Falconer, R.L. Dewar, J. Khachan (ed.), Plasma Physics: Proceedings of the 11th International Congress on Plasma Physics, ICPP2002, American Institute of Physics (AIP), New York, pp. 711-714.
- Ball, R, Dewar, R & Sugama, H 2002, 'Metamorphosis of Plasma Turbulence-shear-flow Dynamics through a Transcritical Bifurcation', Physical Review E, vol. 66, no. 6, pp. 066408-1-9.
- Ball, R 2001, 'Understanding Critical Behaviour through Visualization: A Walk around the Pitchfork', Computer Physics Communications, vol. 142, pp. 71-75.
- Ball, R & Haymet, A 2001, 'Bistability and hysteresis in self-assembling micelle systems: phenomenology and deterministic dynamics', Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, vol. 3, pp. 4753-4761.
- Ball, R & Dewar, R 2001, 'A Walk in the Parameter Space of L-H Transitions without Stepping on or Through the Cracks', Journal of Plasma and Fusion Research, no. 4, pp. 266-270.
- Ball, R, Dewar, R & Sugama, H 2001, 'Symmetry and singularities in a low-dimensional model of a complex system. A back door approach to the physics of L-H transitions', IPELS-2001, ed. Sato, T., National Institute for Fusion Science, Toki, Japan, pp. 73-76.
- McIntosh, A, Gray, B, Wake, G et al 2001, 'The stability of a near adiabatic Endex batch CSTR reactor', ANZIAM Journal, vol. 43, pp. 59-75.
- Dewar, R, Cuthbert, P & Ball, R 2001, 'Strong "Quantum" Chaos in the Global Ballooning Mode Spectrum of Three-Dimensional Plasmas', Physical Review Letters, vol. 86, no. 11, pp. 2321-2324.
- Ball, R & Dewar, R 2000, 'Singularity Theory Study of Overdetermination in Models for L-H Transitions', Physical Review Letters, vol. 84, pp. 3077-3080.
- Ball, R, McIntosh, A & Brindley, J 1999, 'Thermokinetic Models for Simultaneous Reactions: a Comparative Study', Combustion Theory and Modelling, vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 447-468.
- Ball, R, McIntosh, A & Brindley, J 1999, 'The Role of Char-Forming Processes in the Thermal Decomposition of Cellulose.', Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, vol. 1, no. 21, pp. 5035-5043.