PhD: Three-dimensional Relaxation of Gravitational Instability in a Porous Medium
Physical and Environmental Sciences,Geology,Environmental Sciences,Engineering and Technology,Civil Engineering,Mechanical Engineering,Other Engineering
Short info about job
Company: Loughborough University
Hours: Full Time
Type / Role: PhD
Phone: +44-1549 1645172
Fax: +44-1433 5159423
Detail information about job PhD: Three-dimensional Relaxation of Gravitational Instability in a Porous Medium. Terms and conditions vacancy
Application details:Reference number: FNHZ2017Preferred Start date (if any): 1st October 2017Closing Date: 15/09/2017
Supervisors:Primary supervisor: Francois NadalSecondary supervisor: Huayong Zhao
Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014) and an outstanding 66% of the work of Loughborough’s academic staff who were eligible to be submitted to the REF was judged as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, compared to a national average figure of 43%.
Background – It’s now widely accepted that the global warming of the atmosphere observed in the last 150 years is due to an increase in the atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, and that the storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) in deep geological formations is a feasible medium term solution. The partial dissolution of this supercritical CO2 into a brine results in a mixture that is denser than the brine underneath, which triggers a gravitational instability allowing the mixture to be advected downwards through the brine. Carbon dioxide is thus stored at the bottom of the aquifer, where it can remain sequestrated for a very long time. The few existing three-dimensional (3D) studies, all numerical, suggest that predictions based on 2D models may be inadequate. This remains to be demonstrated through experiments, since all numerical simulations have been performed using continuum/Darcy scale models, thus discarding all the physics occurring at the pore scale.
Objectives - We propose to investigate the 3D gravitational convection triggered by CO2 dissolution, using novel experimental setups relying on the matching of the refractive indexes of the solid and fluid phases, and providing a full 3D pore scale characterization of the concentration and velocity fields. The convective flow will first be studied in a confined cylindrical geometry in order to accurately characterize the dynamics, amplitude and stability of a single plume. Pseudo 3D (granular-filled Hele-Shaw cells) and full 3D cells will then permit to investigate the dynamics of many interacting plumes, and a theoretical model will be elaborated based on these experimental results to take into account possible effects of the porous dispersion (convective enhanced diffusion). A heuristic model of the trapping efficiency will also be proposed based on the experimental findings.
Funding information:The studentship will start in October 2017, for 3 years, and currently provide a tax-free stipend of £14,553 per annum plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate (currently £4,195 p.a.). While we welcome applications from non EU nationals, the total value of the studentship will be used towards the cost of the International tuition fee in the first instance.
Find out more: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/meme/
Entry requirements:Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in Fluid Engineering / Fluid Mechanics or a related subject. Experience in one or more of the following fields will be an advantage: non-linear dynamics, linear stability analysis, non-modal stability analysis. Some knowledge in optical diagnostics will be useful as well.
Contact details:Name: Francois NadalEmail address: F.R.Nadal@lboro.ac.ukTelephone number: +44-(0) 1509 227 057
How to apply:All applications should be made online at http://www.lboro.ac.uk/study/apply/research/. Please quote the reference ‘FNHZ2017’ on all correspondence and on the application form, ensure that you select ‘Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering’ under ‘programme name’ on the application form.