Nearly 70% of hydrocarbons are produced from poorly consolidated sandstone reservoirs worldwide which are inevitably mixed with sand. Sand production – as small as 0.01w% – leads to major erosion problems such as degradation of pipelines, down-hole tubing and production equipment including pumps and valves. The impinging sand particles will cause excessive damage to the surface layer, which will also reduce the effectiveness of corrosion inhibitors and enhance corrosive degradation. Meanwhile, corrosion will in return enhance erosion resulting in severe and rapid loss of surface metal (washout). The massive economic cost of erosion – particulates being the most common source – is highlighted in a Schlumberger review article which reports that erosion and synergy with corrosion annually costs the industry “tens of billions of dollars”.

  • Number of scholarships One
  • Value Home/EU tuition fees and stipend
  • Opens 3 March 2017
  • Deadline 17 March 2017
  • Help with Tuition fees, Living costs
  • Duration 3 Years


Candidates should have (or expect to achieve) a first class (or 2.1 + Masters with a dissertation in CFD).

Project Details

The turbulence fluctuations are mainly responsible for particle transport near the walls and control the rate of erosive collisions in parallel flow configurations. A novel multiscale molding approach will be adopted in this project to provide a comprehensive correlation to relate the rate of erosive collisions to the turbulence statistics (e.g. the intensity and length scales).

The fully resolved simulations (FRS) – considering a single particle – will initially be used to assess the accuracy of the available drag and lift models (e.g. Maxey and Riley Equations) in the near wall region considering the relevant turbulence spectra (e.g. the Wilczek Spectrum). After tuning the Maxey and Riley model using the FRS data, they will be used for Eulerian-Lagrangian (Unresolved – Large number of particle) type simulations to provide a full correlation between the turbulence statistics and the rate of erosive collisions.

How to apply

The project is fully funded and the 3-year PhD studentship will cover Home/EU fees and a tax-free salary of approximately £14,500 per annum.  If you wish to be considered please email Dr Sina Haeri to note your interest.