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Research Project Description

Development of a PM number Measurement Reference
Postgraduate Internship Program Opportunities
National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Ann Arbor, MI

EPA -NVFEL 2012-01

Project Description:

A postgraduate or postdoctoral research training opportunity is available with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Transportation and Air Quality, National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory (NVFEL) in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The internship will be served with the Assessment and Standards Division (ASD). (

ASD identifies and develops future emission control strategies (such as new vehicle, engine, and fuel quality standards) and national policy on mobile source emission control. The division develops regulations and policies, determines the contribution of mobile sources to pollutant emission inventories, and assesses the feasibility, cost, and in-use effectiveness of emission control technologies.

The intern will be involved in the development of a reference method for measurement of particulate matter (PM) number from combustion engine exhaust streams. This will include use of multi-physics software to model fluid dynamics, heat transfer, and chemistry of particulate matter evolution in exhaust and sample flow streams, as well testing the sampling system and instrumentation.

The intern will contribute to the modeling of a particulate matter and gaseous emissions sampling system for a particulate matter number reference system. The model will include the fluid dynamics, thermal properties, and chemistry of the sampling system and PM transport in the sampling system. This internship will also include hands-on experience with internal combustion engine emissions sampling system components. The NVFEL provides EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality (OTAQ) with emissions testing services for motor vehicles and trucks, heavy-duty and nonroad engines, and fuels used in the transportation market in support of rulemakings, certification, enforcement actions, and test procedures development. Since its founding, the Lab has been at the forefront of developing clean automotive technology and designing programs to reduce and prevent air pollution.

Additionally, the intern will have an opportunity to learn how national laws and policies are implemented and will become familiar how EPA informs and engages with stakeholders.

This project will give the participant a firsthand view of the scientific and engineering techniques OTAQ uses to develop rulemakings, certification, enforcement actions, and test procedures for reduction air pollution and greenhouse gases emitted from mobile sources. These techniques are used to:

  • Assess mobile source-related air quality problems and develop sophisticated emission inventory modeling tools.
  • Establish national standards to reduce emissions from on-road and nonroad mobile sources of pollution.
  • Implement national mobile source standards through certification processes and in-use monitoring strategies.
  • Develop fuel efficiency programs and technologies to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases from the transportation sector.
  • Research, evaluate, and develop advanced technologies for controlling emissions, as well as develop new strategies for improving fuel efficiency.

The participant will collaborate with engineers and scientists at the NFVEL, vehicle and diesel engine manufacturers, and the associated laboratories (such as ORNL, Argonne, and SwRI) that collaborate with NVFEL personnel.

There will also be opportunities to present and publish results at conferences and in professional journals.


Applicants should have received a master’s or doctoral degree physics, chemistry, chemical engineering or mechanical engineering within five years of the starting date.

The appointment is full-time for one year and may be renewed upon recommendation of EPA and subject to availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend. The intern must provide proof of health insurance. The intern does not become an employee of EPA nor of ORISE

U.S. citizenship is required. The program is open to qualified individuals without regard to race, sex, religion, color, age, physical or mental disability, national origin, or status as a Vietnam era or disabled veteran.

Technical Questions:

The contact person for this project is Dr. Bob Giannelli. He can be contacted at

How to Apply:

The Internship/Research Participation Program for EPA NVFEL is administered by the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE). Please reference Project # EPA-NVFEL 2012-01 when calling or writing for information. For additional information and application material contact: Internship Program Attn: Betty Bowling - MS 36, ORISE, P.O. Box 117, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831 Phone: (865) 576-8503 Fax: (865) 241-5219 email: 

An application can be found at