Jalel Azaiez, PhD

PhD in Chemical Engineering Stanford University / USA
M Sc in Chemical Engineering Stanford University / USA
Diplome d'Etudes Appronfondies (DEA)Ecole Centrale de Paris / France
Diplome d'Ingenieur (B Sc)Ecole Centrale de Paris / France

Areas of Research

Flow Instabilities in Porous Media
Flows in porous media are encountered in many practical applications, most notably in oil recovery, hydrology and soil remediation. This research theme deals with flow instabilities that develop at the interface between two fluids in a displacement. This type of instability, referred to as either viscous fingering or Saffman-Taylor instability, determines the efficiency of many existing processes as well as the viability of new developed ones. Both miscible and immiscible displacements as well as multi-phase flows are of interest to our group. Examples of flows that are analyzed include non-Newtonian flows with applications in emulsion flows and polymer flooding for enhanced oil recovery, non-isothermal flows that are encountered in processes based on heat transfer such as the Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD), reactive flows that have been successfully used for soil remediation and explored for heavy oil recovery, buoyancy driven instabilities with application in CO2 sequestration, flows with time-dependent injection velocities that can be used to understand and optimize important processes such as Cyclic Steam Stimulation (CSS) as well as flows in heterogeneous porous media. Modelling of flows in naturally fractured reservoirs is also pursued.
Nano-Particle Systems
Flows of nano-particle suspensions have become a common occurrence in many fields such as the energy, chemical or environmental sectors. This research theme aims at modelling flow instabilities of nano-particle solutions in micro-geometries and tracking the motion and interactions of individual particles to understand their dynamics in the pore scale, such as in tight reservoirs. Research conducted in our group involves both macroscopic-scale formulation where the nano-fluids are treated as a continuum as well as mesoscopic-scale modelling where the Dissipative Particle Dynamics and the Lattice Boltzmann Method are used. Different forms of inter- and intra-particle forces are analyzed and interactions with the surrounding media and their effects on the transport of the particles and the development of the flow are one of the main focuses of the research.
Micro-fluidics offer exciting challenges and new opportunities for fundamental and applied research in the field of transport phenomena. These flows are widely encountered in micro-systems which are gaining wide use in many fields ranging from the life sciences to energy systems. An example of the problems analyzed by our group includes the dynamics of liquid bridges in micro-channels under the effects of external forces, and in particular its response to a variety of time-dependent flows such as oscillatory and pulsatile flows. The effects of surface wetting and the frequency/amplitude of the flows on the liquid bridge stability and its interfacial morphology are explored. The long-term vision of this research is to develop robust flow behaviour models for miniaturized fluid systems, and to build numerical algorithms that allow understanding the physical dynamics of such flows in micro-scale systems.
Numerical and Mathematical Modelling
Our research team has an extensive expertise in modeling and analyzing fluid flows, through the development and use of a variety of numerical and mathematical tools. Different numerical algorithms based on Discrete Particle Dynamics, Lattice Boltzmann Method, Level Set and Immersed Interface methods, Spectral Methods and Finite Difference techniques have been developed and resulted in a collection of numerical codes that have allowed modelling such flows under various conditions. Our group has also excellent expertise in the use of analytical mathematical tools to probe the flow and determine conditions for instabilities to develop, before resorting to full scale direct numerical simulations. All researchers in our group are expected to have a strong knowledge of numerical methods and analysis, a solid mathematical background, and a familiarity with a programming language.

Supervising degrees

Chemical and Petroleum Engineering - Doctoral: Accepting Inquiries
Chemical and Petroleum Engineering - Masters: Accepting Inquiries
Chemical and Petroleum Engineering - Masters: Accepting Inquiries

Working with this supervisor

Students with strong mathematical and numerical modeling background and very good knowledge of transport phenomena. Expertise in the Lattice Boltzmann Method is desirable.

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