Fluid flow in porous media

We study the physics of multiphase flow and transport phenomena in porous media-of considerable interest for a number of industrial and environmental processes based in the School of Chemical Engineering and Analytical Sciences. Our applications include enhanced oil recovery, CO2 sequestration, disposal of hazardous wastes, water evaporation and infiltration in soil, drying of powders, and salt intrusion in coastal areas. Our interests are mainly focused on the analytical analysis, simulation, measurement and interpretation of various aspects of flow and transport in porous media such as heat and mass transfer, dynamics of miscible and immiscible multiphase flow and interfacial processes in porous media and wetting phenomena.

We combine the results of our experiments obtained by cutting-edge technologies such as x-ray tomography, neutron radiography, and acoustic emission technique with physically-based models to provide better physical understanding of the processes involved in multiphase flow and transport in porous media.

Contact: nima.shokri@manchester.ac.uk

A typical grey-scale image recorded by the monochromic camera (a) with the corresponding black and white image (b) indicating foam films (lamellae) and dispersed gas (or the area filled with air), respectively and (c) showing a color map of the bubble size distribution with color closer to red indicating a larger bubble (after Osei-Bonsu et al., Colloids and Surfaces A, 481, 514–526, 2015)


Our laboratory is located in the state-of-the-art James Chadwick Building in the Main Campus of the University, on the corner of Booth Street East and Upper Brook Street. We have various cutting-edge instruments in the laboratory used in various research projects:

  • Thermal Camera: FLIR T650sc
  • 3D Printer
  • Environmental chamber
  • Fraction collector
  • Stereomicroscope Leica 205C
  • Acoustic emission system
  • Diaphragm pump
  • Microfluidic pressure sensor
  • 2D imagine setup
  • Syringe pump
  • Pressure generator
  • Mass flow meter
  • Measuring foam stability
  • Measurement of capillary pressure saturation curve
  • General sensors and acquisition system

Recent publications

Rodríguez de Castro, A., N. Shokri, N. Karadimitriou, M. Oostrom, V. Joekar-Niasar. 2015. Experimental Study on Non-monotonicity of Capillary Desaturation Curves in a Pore-network. Water Resour. Res. (in review).

Mas-Hernandez, E., P. Grassia, N. Shokri. 2015. Foam improved oil recovery: Modelling the effect of an increase in injection pressure. The European Physical Journal E (in press).

Osei-Bonsu, K., N. Shokri, P. Grassia. 2015. Surfactant dependent foam stability in the presence and absence of hydrocarbons: From bubble- to bulk-scale. Colloid Surface A (in press). 

Mas-Hernandez, E., P. Grassia, N. Shokri. 2015. Foam improved oil recovery: Foam front displacement in the presence of slumping, Colloid Surface A: Physicochem. Eng. Aspects. 473. 123-132. 

Khosravian, H., V. Joekar-Niasar, N. Shokri. 2015. Effects of flow history on oil entrapment in porous media: An experimental study. AIChE J. 61. 1385–1390.

Grassia, P., E. Mas-Hernandez, N. Shokri, S.J. Cox, G. Mishuris W.R. Rossen. 2014. Analysis of a Model for Foam Improved Oil Recovery. J. Fluid Mech. 751. 346-405.

Surface of columns packed with (a) hydrophilic (HI) sand and (b) two hydraulically coupled vertical domains of hydrophobic (HO) and HI sand. The dash line indicates the vertical HI/HO interface. (a) Since evaporation occurs at surface, tracer is deposited there (b) capillary suction between HI and HO grains causes lateral liquid flow from HO to HI sand layer and subsequent evaporation and preferential dye deposition exclusively on HI surface (after Shokri and Or, Journal of Colloid and Interface Science 391, 135–141, 2013).
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