+44 (0)131 451 3781
Room NF.3
John Coulson Building
Heriot-Watt University
Xiongwei Ni
Roles and responsibilities

I am the Director of Studies for 3rd year students in Chemical Engineering, and teach Reaction Engineering and Advanced Reaction Engineering for 3rd and final year students respectively. I also am involved in design projects for MEng students and supervise on average 5 final year student research projects annually.


My research interests are in multiphase mixing, dispersion, novel reactors and reaction engineering.

My research group, the Centre for Oscillatory Baffled Reactor Application (COBRA), pursues the excellence in scientific research and technological applications in multiphase processes utilising novel oscillatory baffled reactors. The central theme of the strategic research in COBRA is to understand what controls particle/bubble/droplet size in a given reactor environment and to facilitate best fluid mechanical conditions/regimes/reactors in order to achieve the designed outcomes. The scientific research tackles the fundamental aspects of the reactors and processes, such as, mixing characteristics, velocity and shear profiles, macro and micro mixing length, RTD, liquid-liquid dispersion, gas-liquid mass transfer, solid particle suspension and transportation, droplet breakage and coalescence rate; and attempts to establish the link between fluid mechanical conditions and droplet/particle behaviours.

While the technological research applies the scientific understanding to real industrial operations using the novel oscillatory baffled reactors, e.g. suspension and emulsion polymerisation, phase transfer catalysis, waste water treatment, fermentation, organic synthesis, crystallisation, flocculation, coagulation, membrane oxygenation, enzymatic solid-to-solid peptide synthesis, hydrogenation and so on.

For more details, please refer to