Study level

  • Vacation research experience scheme


Topic status

We're looking for students to study this topic.

Research centre


Professor Emilie Sauret
Division / Faculty
Faculty of Engineering

External supervisors

  • Zhongzheng Wang, QUT Postdoctoral Research Fellow


Research on immiscible flow in a heterogeneous porous media has been an active area of research, particularly due to its close relationship with hydrology and petroleum engineering. Specifically, the modelling of oil migration and non-aqueous phase liquid migration in groundwater is a major challenge due to the multi-scale heterogeneous nature of the porous media.

In this project we will develop efficient numerical method to simulate the fluid-fluid displacement process in porous media with a gradient in grain size, and gain fundamental understanding on the impacts of gravitational and capillary forces in spatially correlated porous media.

Research activities

  • Develop invasion percolation algorithm with consideration of capillary and gravitational forces for simulating multiphase flow.
  • Construct spatially correlated porous media with grain size gradient.
  • Carry out simulations to probe the effects of topological features of porous media.


  • Understand the fundamental mechanisms that govern fluid-fluid displacement process in porous media.
  • Gain new insights in the transitions between stable displacement and capillary fingering regimes during gravity driven multiphase flow.
  • Publish the outcomes in applied engineering literature.

Skills and experience

A strong programming background (e.g. MATLAB, or equivalent).



Contact the supervisor for more information.