Mechanical Engineering Graduate Seminar Series: Dr. Avinoam Rabinovich, "Modeling two-phase flow in porous reservoir rock samples with millimeter-scale accuracy"

10:00 am to 10:50 am on March 29, 2023
Floor/Room #
Room 229

Abstract:  Modeling multiphase flow in subsurface formations such as aquifers and hydrocarbon reservoirs is a challenging task with many open questions. An important tool for investigating these flows on the laboratory scale are coreflooding experiments conducted on rock samples (cores) extracted from reservoirs. Coreflooding experiments with computed tomography (CT) imaging are becoming more common. They allow to investigate the sub-core scale properties such as relative permeability and capillary pressure, and to construct multiphase flow models that not only capture the core average flow, but also the flow on the sub-core (millimeter) scale. These core flow models are important for a number of reasons. First, they allow to evaluate the applicability of mathematical models and numerical simulators. Second, coreflooding models can be applied towards forecasting and understanding basic physical processes. Finally, models can be used for relating between sub-core scale properties and core effective properties, which provides insight on upscaling to the field scale.

This presentation will begin with an overview on reservoir flow applications and coreflooding experiments. Then, I will discuss recent research in my group related to estimating sub-core permeability and modeling coreflooding experiments. First, synthetic data will be used to show the applicability and accuracy of the method for constructing a core model. Then, experimental data of three-dimensional saturation distribution, capillary pressure measurements and core pressure drop will be presented. Numerical core models will be constructed and simulation results will be compared to the data for accuracy evaluation.

Bio:  Dr. Avinoam Rabinovich obtained a B.Sc. in Geophysics and Mathematics (2007), an M.Sc. in Geophysics (2010) and a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering (2014) from Tel-Aviv University. He then obtained a position for postdoctoral research in the department of Energy Resources Engineering at Stanford University. Since 2016 he is a faculty member at the School of Mechanical Engineering, Tel Aviv University and the head of the Subsurface Reservoir Flow Research Group. Dr. Rabinovich is interested in subsurface flows pertaining to environmental and energy applications such as groundwater, CO2 sequestration, oil and natural gas production, and energy storage. For more see

Contact Person
Prof. Lin Cheng