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Ke Xu
Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Department of Energy and Resources Engineering

2014.08 – 2018.03 Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin, Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering
2012.08 – 2014.07 M.S. Tsinghua University, Department of Chemical Engineering
2008.08 – 2012.07 B.S. Tsinghua University, Department of Chemical Engineering

Professional Experience
2020.01 –                 Assistant Professor            College of Engineering, Peking University
2018.03 – 2019.12      Postdoctoral Associate        Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2017.05 – 2017.08      Research Scientist Intern    Center of Technology Innovation, Baker Hughes, a GE company
2016.05 – 2016.08      Research Scientist Intern    Landmark, Halliburton 

Research Area

  • Transport in Porous Media and Granular Media
  • Subsurface Energy Recovery
  • Flows and Interfacial Phenomena in Nano- and Micro- Scale
  • CO2 Geological Sequestration  

Research Interests
We study physics of fluids in porous media, including the flow of emulsion & foam, evolution and dissolution of residual fluids, fluid phase changes, and fluid-fluid displacements. We aim at solving fundamental questions raised from subsurface energy recovery, CO2 sequestration, and groundwater hydrology.
Based on advanced microfluidic experimental platforms, we visualized and model the flows in pore-scale. We are specifically interested in following topics in porous media:
(1)  Physical processes that are dominant by capillary forces, such as bubble/droplet trapping and mobilization, emulsion flow, foam flow, capillary fingering, and ripening of residual fluids.
(2)  Fluid systems with strong interfacial mass transfer or phase changes, such as water - CO2, crude oil – solvent, ultra-low interfacial tension systems, and hydrates.  
(3)  Experimental and mathematical approaches that upscale pore-scale physics to Darcy-scale, and finally to applications in field. 

Selected Publications
Note:correspondence author(s) are marked by “*”  
(1)  Ke Xu*, Yashar Mehmani*, Luoran Shang, Qingrong Xiong. “Gravity‐Induced Bubble Ripening in Porous Media and Its Impact on Capillary Trapping Stability”, Geophysical Research Letters, 2019, 46(23): 13804
(2)  Jingping Liu*, Zhiwen Dai, Ke Xu*, Yuping Yang, Keaihe Lv, Xianbin Huang, Jinsheng Sun. “Water-Based Drilling Fluid Containing Bentonite / Poly (sodium 4-styrenesulfonate) Composite for Ultra-High Temperature Ultra-Deep Drilling and Its Field Performance”, SPE Journal, accepted, SPE-199362-PA.
(3)  Yujing Du, Ke Xu*, Peixi Zhu, Matthew Balhoff*. “Microfluidic Investigation of Low Salinity Effects during Oil Recover: a No-Clay and Time-Dependent Mechanism”, SPE Journal, 2019, 24(06): 2841-2858.
(4)  Ke Xu, Devesh Agrawal*, Qusai Darugar. “Hydrophilic Nanoparticle-Based Enhanced Oil Recovery: Microfluidic Investigations on Mechanisms”, Energy&Fuels, 2018, 32(11): 11243.
(5)  Ke Xu*, Roger Bonnecaze, Matthew Balhoff*. “Egalitarianism among Bubbles in Porous Media: an Ostwald Ripening Derived Anti-Coarsening Phenomenon”, Physical Review Letters, 2017, 119(26): 264502.
(6)  Ke Xu, Tianbo Liang, Peixi Zhu, Pengpeng Qi, Jun Lu, Chun Huh, Matthew Balhoff*. “A 2.5-D Glass Micromodel for Investigation of Multi-Phase Flow in Porous Media”, Lab on a Chip, 2017, 17(4): 640.
(7)  Ke Xu, Peixi Zhu, Colon Tatiana, Matthew Balhoff*, Chun Huh. “A Microfluidic Investigation of the Synergistic Effect of Nanoparticles and Surfactants in Macro-Emulsion Based EOR“, SPE Journal, 2017, 22 (02): 459.
(8)  Ke Xu, Peixi Zhu, Matthew Balhoff*, Chun Huh. “Microfluidic Investigation of Nanoparticles’ Role in Mobilizing Trapped Oil Droplets in Porous Media“, Langmuir, 2015, 31(51): 13673.
(9)  Ke Xu, Chris P. Tostado, Jian-Hong Xu*, Yang-Cheng Lu, Guang-Sheng Luo. “Direct Measurement of the Differential Pressure during Drop Formation in a Co-Flow Microfluidic Device“, Lab on a Chip, 2014, 14: 1357.

Selected Conference Presentations

  • “Wettability Controls Bubble Dissolution in Confined Geometry” Porous Media: Structure, Flow, and Dynamics Workshop, SPWLA , Boston, USA, 2019
  • “Phase change in disordered media: intermolecular forces control simultaneous evaporation and condensation” APS March Meeting 2019, Boston, USA, 2019
  • “Evaporation-Induced Instability during Dry Gas Injection into Water-Saturated Porous Media” 71st Annual Meeting of the APS Division of Fluid Dynamics, Atlanta, USA, 2018
  • “Is Ostwald Ripening Important in CO2 Geological Sequestration? A Micromodel Study of Bubble Repining Dynamics” InterPore 10th Annual Meeting and Jubilee, New Orleans, USA, 2018
  • “A Microfluidic Investigation of the Synergistic Effect of Nanoparticles and Surfactants in Macro-Emulsion Based EOR.” SPE Improved Oil Recovery Conference, Tulsa, USA, 2016.