Welcome to the 5th Brazil Interpore Chapter Meeting!

Thank you for accepting our invitation to attend the 5th-Interpore conference of the Brazilian chapter.

The conference will be held from 1 to 2 August 2022 in a fully virtual format with scientific program focusing on advances in the research, methods, and theory of Porous Media in close connection to the topics: Green World, Smart Materials, Oil Science and Synchrotron light, Biosciences, Biorenewables, Nanotechnology.

Please find below the program of the meeting, along with highlights current trends on porous media related topics to strengthen collaboration among researchers by bringing together international and Brazilian specialists from academia and industry acting in a wide range of areas related to porous media research.

  • Porous Media & Green World;

  • Following current trends of Interpore (2020 https://events.interpore.org/event/23 ) and (2021 https://events.interpore.org/event/25 ), Energy & Climate porous media science and engineering has played an important historical role in the development of the current global energy system through the production of oil, natural gas, and coal. Unfortunately, combustion of the produced fuels has led to the current climate and carbon problem, prompting the urgent need to transition to a low carbon future. While renewables such as wind and solar will play a major role in the energy transition, creative uses of natural and engineered porous media will also be a critical part of any viable low carbon energy system. Because fossil fuels will form a significant part of the foreseeable future energy mix, CO2 capture and subsequent subsurface storage must play a major role in both direct carbon-capture-and-storage (CCS) projects and in negative emissions scenarios like Bio-Energy with CCS, or BECCS. In addition to large-scale carbon storage, more creative uses of porous media also need to be developed, including creative subsurface energy storage schemes to deal with intermittency of renewables, and novel capture technologies in engineered systems as well as naturally reactive rocks. This can include improved methods for oil and gas production, all aspects of CCS systems including storage in reactive rock systems as well as negative emissions involving BECCS, and new methods for subsurface energy storage including those that complement traditional wind and solar. Moreover, Porous Media for a Green World: Water & Agriculture also includes a sustainable use of soil and water resources is crucial to preserve healthy terrestrial ecosystems and maintaining food security. Many of the scientific and technical challenges related to these issues hinge on understanding, controlling and optimizing processes that involve the multiscale (in both space and time) dynamics of water and nutrients in the soil-plant system. Fundamental research on these interdisciplinary topics will provide guidance and novel solutions to improve human actions on agroecosystems and reduce their potential negative impacts. The long-lasting environmental repercussion of water and soil management in agroecosystems and the elements of irreversibility on the microscale structure of soils in relation to soil degradation and salinization, groundwater dynamics, carbon and nutrient retention, which in turn affect plant status and productivity and ultimately ecosystems conditions and human welfare, are of interest.

  • Porous Media & Smart Materials;

  • Recently, application of porous media science in the design of smart materials has gained significant interest within the scientific community. The main idea underlying such an attention resides in the possibility of manipulating pore size distributions for optimizing material response under particular external stimuli, such as flow conditions, mechanical stress, chemical reaction and temperature gradients. Applications are widespread and involve the design of drug carriers, skin permeation, selection of material in buildings capable of reacting efficiently to weather conditions, mobile phone screens that repair themselves, among others. In this section the invited speakers will present state-of-the-art methods along with a guidance of promising topics for research development in the area.

  • Porous Media & Oil Science;

  • The porous media flows appear as a fundamental environment in a wide range of technological applications and natural sciences. At the same time, they also bring a very rich content to the areas of pure and applied mathematics, which study the fundamental basis for models construction and properties of their solutions, as well as the problems of numerical analysis and scientific computing. Because the multidisciplinary approach is intrinsic for the porous media studies, the development of mathematical theories has mutual benefit from the close connection to experimental works and innovative development, possibly of practical relevance for industry and/or society. Petroleum industry as Oil Science covers several aspects that may include possible practical relevance and its mathematical complexity and engineering concerned with the activities related to the production of hydrocarbons. A growing, world population aspiring to ever higher living standards is placing even more unprecedented demands on the resources of the earth. Today's primary sources of energy are mainly non-renewable. Petroleum, which is currently a principal source of power world-wide, is itself among the vanishing resources. In this thematic session Porous Media & Oil Science, we will stimulate discussions to cover several aspects that may include possible practical relevance and its mathematical, numerical, experimental and engineering complexity viewpoints and bring together researchers from pure and applied sciences to share their ideas on the porous media & oil science perspectives in their studies.

  • Porous Media & Synchrotron light, Biosciences, Biorenewables, Nanotechnology.

  • Sirius is a Brazilian national laboratory that produces a very special light, the synchrotron light. Researchers around the world use this type of light to study different aspects of natural or artificial materials, which often present structural, organic, and inorganic organization, in multiple length scales, distributed hierarchically, giving them unique physicochemical properties. Some examples of these materials are rock, soil, catalysts, batteries, zeolites, biological tissues (e.g. bones and wood), and synthetic materials (e.g. cements and ceramics). Shedding light on their structures can guide a better use of them or even boost the synthesis of new materials with better properties. All the given examples have one thing in common: they are all natural or artificial porous media, which make Sirius a powerful advanced tool for studying and contributing to the worldwide porous media community.

    Sirius and the porous media community. In agriculture (Soil), for example, one or more nutrients necessary for the growth and development of plants are supplied or supplemented through fertilizers, which can be mineral or organic, natural, or synthetic substances. However, the physicochemical path taken by nutrients from their dispersion in the soil to their absorption and incorporation into plant metabolism is still not well understood, which causes the inefficient use of fertilizers, often in an excessive and harmful way to the environment. Soil is a solid and heterogeneous combination of organic and inorganic compounds, immersed in aqueous solutions and in the root of the plants. The chemical, physical and biological processes that take place there at the atomic and molecular level control the transport, availability, and absorption of nutrients, as well as the transport of pollutants and soil contamination. Synchrotron light allows the investigation of the structure of this region, called the rhizosphere, at different scales and in high resolution. In this way, the processes that occur in the soil can be better known and controlled, contributing to a more efficient agricultural production and less aggressive to the environment. Rocks as water reservoirs. Around the world, there are hundreds of thousands of subsurface contaminated by human activities, with negative impacts on the environment and on human health. In many cases, the remediation processes adopted are not able to achieve the established environmental targets, often due to the lack of robust conceptual models. In this context, data on groundwater flow and contaminant migration are essential, especially in the case of aquifers contaminated by non-aqueous liquids. In addition, for in situ remediation processes, where the cleaning process takes place inside the water reservoir, understanding how the reactive flow occurs and time scales are fundamental information to improve these processes on an industrial scale and thus positively impact an entire population. Bio renewable. Changing the perspectives to renewable resources and more efficient processes, the transformation of biomass, such as sugarcane straw and bagasse, which are residues from the sugar and ethanol industry, into fuels and chemical products has the potential to become a viable alternative to fossil fuels, such as oil and natural gas. Making this transformation efficient and economically viable is one of the great challenges of this century. For the conversion of biomass to take place, the carbohydrates that compose it, such as cellulose, must be broken into much smaller pieces. Catalysts are substances that facilitate chemical reactions used in practically all industrial processes that involve the transformation of primary products. The search for more efficient and more accessible catalysts has a direct impact on the economy and the environment, for example, by making production processes cheaper and providing cleaner industrial production. This investigation, however, requires that the catalysts be studied under operating conditions, that is, simulating the same conditions in which they will be applied in industrial processes. These conditions include high temperatures, high pressures, and the presence of different reactants. Synchrotron light allows the study of these chemical reactions in real time, with the monitoring of changes in the structure of both reactants and catalysts. This allows a detailed understanding of the functioning of a given catalyst, and guides modifications that can be made to improve its performance, making it, for example, cheaper to produce, more selective to the product of interest, and more active at lower temperatures and pressures. Bioscience. In the bioscience area, several examples of porous media can be cited. One of the main interests in tissue bioengineering is to understand how the microstructure of the trabecular bone adapts to mechanical loads, especially in the bone repair process. Understanding these aspects can promote strategies for developing new materials capable of acting as a bone graft substitute without interfering with the formation of the tissue’s original architecture, thus preserving its intrinsic mechanical resistance. Other important area is drug delivery, where considerable effort has been directed to the development of new methods that minimize damage to the organism. One of these methods is the use of nanoparticles, which work like pills that carry and deliver the drug directly to diseased cells. Nanoparticles of this type also offer great potential in fighting bacteria – including those that are resistant to antibiotics – and viruses. Sirius can contribute on both areas, in many ways, such us following the bone growth in an in vivo/vitro system and to characterize the different types of nanoparticles used in drug delivery.


Participants at the 5th Brazilian InterPore Meeting around the world at first glance.


Monday, August 1, 2022

09h00 – 09h15: Opening Session

09h15 – 12h00: Porous Media & Green World

13h15 – 13h30: Opening Session

13h30 – 15h30: Porous Media & Smart Materials

15h30 – 16h30: Discussion

16h30 – 16h45: Closing Session

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

09h00 – 09h15: Opening Session

09h15 – 12h00: Porous Media & Synchrotron light, Biosciences, Biorenewables, Nanotechnology

13h15 – 13h30: Opening Session

13h30 – 15h30: Porous Media & Oil Sciences

15h30 – 16h30: Discussion

16h30 – 16h45: Closing Session

Day 1 (Aug 01, 2022) Day 2 (Aug 02, 2022)
Porous Media & Green World Porous Media & Synchrotron light, Biosciences, Biorenewables, Nanotechnology
BRT Time Plenarist Plenarist
09:00 – 09:15 Opening Session: Rien van Genuchten – Utrecht University Opening Session: Harry Westfahl Jr – Director LNLS/CNPEM
09:15 – 09:45 Didier Lasseux – University of Bordeaux Steffen Berg – Shell Amsterdam & Imperial College
09:45 – 10:15 Sibele Pergher – UFRN Talita Ferreira – LNLS/CNPEM
10:15 – 10:45 Sebastião Mardônio Lucena – UFC Cristiane Rodella – LNLS/CNPEM
10:45 – 11:15 Pedro Leite Silva Dias – USP Mathias Steiner – IBM-Rio
11:15 – 12:00 Discussion Discussion

Day 1 (Aug 01, 2022) Day 2 (Aug 02, 2022)
Porous Media & Smart Materials Porous Media & Oil Science
BRT Time Plenarist Plenarist
13:15 – 13:30 Opening Session: Márcio Carvalho – Puc/Rio Opening Session: Fabio Pereira dos Santos – UFRJ
13:30 – 14:00 Jon Otto Fossum – NTNU (Norway) Siân Jones – TU Delft
14:00 – 14:30 Caetano Rodrigues Miranda – USP Grigori Chapiro – UFJF
14:30 – 15:00 Débora Freitas – Microfactory Fernando Rochinha – UFRJ
15:00 – 15:30 Tito Bonagamba – USP (São Carlos) Patricia Pereira – LNCC
15:30 – 16:30 Discussion Discussion
16:30 – 16:45 Closing Session Closing Session


Day 1 (Aug 01, 2022)

BRT Time, 09:00 – 09:15 (Opening Session)

Porous Media Research for a Green World:

Enormous Challenges; Many Opportunities

Rien van Genuchtena

aUtrecht University


Our planet is facing enormous challenges about regional and global climate change, fresh-water scarcity, point and non-point source pollution, food security, deforestation, natural and man-made disasters with water, and other agricultural, environmental and engineering issues. At the same time tremendous advances have been made in our understanding and awareness of these problems, and our willingness to address them. The challenges within Brazil are not overly different from those at other places. Congratulations to Interpore-Brazil to focus on porous media research on various spatial and time scales that may alleviate some of our environmental problems. In this introductory presentation I will re-emphasis some the challenges we face, and enumerate a few areas of natural and engineered porous media research that may enhance a greener world.

BRT Time, 09:15 – 09:45

Modelling porous microelectrodes towards their optimal design

Didier Lasseuxa

aUniversity of Bordeaux


Porous materials are of special interest for the development of electro-devices such as biobatteries, bio-actuators and bio-sensors, in particular for miniaturization purposes. Because of their potentially large specific area, these materials allow high current density production that can be several orders of magnitude larger than simple flat electrodes of comparable volume. Nevertheless, these materials have always been designed so far on an empirical basis regarding the thickness of the material and its pore size and organization. These parameters have a crucial impact on the competition between mass transfer, enzymatic turn-over and heterogeneous electron transfer rate. A way to progress in their optimization is to make use of multi-scale modelling, in order to decipher the relationship between the microstructure and the macroscopic properties of the electrode. The presentation will show how this modelling approach through the scales can be performed in conjunction with electroanalytical tests carried out on synthetized porous materials. Several different electrochemical situations will be illustrated and an optimization procedure for the electrode macroscale dimensions will be reported. The overall procedure opens the way towards a rational recursive method of an optimal design for efficiency improvement of these devices.

BRT Time, 09:45 – 10:15


Sibele Perghera*

aLaboratório de Peneiras Moleculares – LABPEMOL, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte – UFRN, Av. Senador Salgado Filho, 3000 – CEP: 59078-970 - Natal – RN - Brasil.


Molecular Sieves are solids with defined porosity and with the capacity of differentiate molecules through their dimensions and geometries. They can be used as catalysts for several kinds of reactions, and also for separation and adsorption processes. In this talk we describe different materials that can be obtained with different porosities for application in adsorption anda catalytic processes. We describe the advances using Zeolites, mesoporous materials, layer materials and hierarchical materials.


Molecular Sieves; zeolites; mesoporous materials.

BRT Time, 10:15 – 10:45

CO2 capture by adsorption: Porous material selection and applied numerical methods.

Sebastião Mardônio Lucenaa



CO2 capture technologies are crucial in the CCSU chain in reducing the environmental impacts caused by flue gas emissions. Taking the year of 1988, as the year in which the contribution of CO2 to global warming was proven, during the last 30 years several technological developments have been undertaken to enable different capture methods such as absorption using amines, cryogenics, membranes and adsorption. Absorption using amines continues to be the most used method on an industrial scale, however it has disadvantages such as high energy cost, corrosion and the formation of unwanted compounds, which requires more demanding specifications for the equipment, with a consequent increase in the initial investment and in maintenance expenses. On the other hand, adsorption is an alternative for CO2 capture due to its low cost, high selectivity and yield, and can be used under mild conditions of pressure and temperature. The great challenge of the adsorption process is in the design of micro and nanoporous materials that have high selectivity and adsorptive capacity for carbon dioxide. This presentation highlights the most recent developments in this area, including molecular simulation and artificial intelligence and our research group's investigations into the feasibility of this technology.

BRT Time, 10:15 – 10:45

The Future of Climate Change: an analysis based on the experience of IPCC in the last 34 years.

Prof. Pedro Leite da Silva Diasa

aInstitute of Astronomy, Geophysics and Atmospheric Sciences, University of São Paulo


The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 to provide policymakers with regular scientific assessments on the current state of knowledge about climate change. IPCC has clearly indicated in the last report (2021) that the goals on emission reduction have not been successful so far and that the global carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration is growing at rate comparable to worst scenarios drawn since the early 90’s. IPCC also indicates that the observed temperature increase in the last few decades compatible with the modelling results associated to the CO2 increase, primarily by the use of fossil fuels and land use change (mostly deforestation). The role of natural climate variability cannot by itself explain the observed mean temperature changes and the occurrence and extreme climatic events. The presentation will focus on a review of the IPCC conclusion and possible future trajectories, in addition to the international agreements on greenhouse gases emission, such as geoengineering to cool the planet more quickly and provide some time to develop new sources of clean energy. Two main forms of geoengineering have been proposed: solar radiation modification and carbon capture either through oceanic fertilization, continental biomass, and geological sequestration. Questions of the global governance have been continuously raised and will also be reviewed.

BRT Time, 13:30 – 14:00

CO2 sorption by clay minerals, from nano-to geo-scales.

Jon Otto Fossuma

aSoft and Complex Matter Lab, Department of Physics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim, Norway


Smectite clay minerals, such as those present in anthropogenic storage sites for CO2, can adsorb large amounts of CO2. Nanoscale functionalization of these smectite clay minerals is essential for developing technologies for carbon sequestration based on these materials and possibly for safe-guarding relevant long-term carbon storage sites.Due to the compact two-dimensional interlayer pore space and their high density of interlayer molecular adsorption sites, clay minerals are competitive in comparison with other adsorption materials for CO2 capture.

We have investigated the adsorption mechanisms of CO2 in dried and hydrated synthetic cation-exchanged fluorohectorite clay, using a combination of X-ray diffraction and selected spectroscopic methods. All our experimental results are supported by our density functional theory simulations.

We have found that certain dried and hydrated cation-exchanged clay show crystalline swelling and spectroscopic changes in response to CO2 exposure, and that this can be attributed to CO2 interactions with a condensed cation-hydroxide interlayer species, as crystalline swelling occurs solely in interlayers where this condensed species is present.

Furthermore, we have demonstrated that with decreasing interlayer surface charge of the clay, the adsorption capacity for CO2 increases, whereas the pressure threshold for adsorption and swelling in response to CO2 decreases. We explain this by more accessible space and adsorption sites for CO2 within the low charge interlayers. The low onset pressure for the lower-charge clay we attribute to weaker cohesion due to the attractive electrostatic forces between the layers.

The optimum low layer charge coincides with the layer charge for natural montmorillonite, which is the main ingredient in commercial bentonite. Therefore, the impact of our results could be important for the implementation of clay minerals for industrial carbon capture, separation, and sequestration processes. In addition, as clay minerals are present in cap-rock formations for anthropogenic storage sites, these results provide new knowledge that could be relevant for the long-term stability of such reservoirs.


1. CO2 Adsorption Enhanced by Tuning the Layer Charge in a Clay Mineral, K.W. Bø Hunvik, P. Loch, D. Wallacher, A. Kirch, L.P. Cavalcanti, M. Rieß, M. Daab, V. Josvanger, S. Grätz, F. Yokaichiya, K.D. Knudsen, C. Rodrigues Miranda, J. Breu, J.O. Fossum, Langmuir 37, 14491 (2021).
2. CO2 Capture by Nickel Hydroxide Interstratified in the Nanolayered Space of a Synthetic Clay Mineral, K.W. Bø Hunvik, P. Loch, L.P. Cavalcanti, K. Kvalem Seljelid, P. Monceyron Røren, S. Rudic, D. Wallacher, A. Kirch, K.D. Knudsen, C. Rodrigues Miranda, J. Breu, H.N. Bordallo, J.O. Fossum, Journal of Physical Chemistry C 124, 26222 (2020).
3. Spontaneous Formation of an Ordered Interstratification upon Ni-exchange, P. Loch, K.W. Bø Hunvik, F. Puchtler, S. Weiß, K. Kvalem Seljelid, P. Monceyron Røren, S. Rudic, S. Raaen, K.D. Knudsen, H.N. Bordallo, J.O. Fossum, J. Breu, Applied Clay Science 198, 105831 (2020).
4. A nano-silicate material with exceptional capacity for CO2 capture and storage at room temperature, L.P. Cavalcanti, G.N. Kalantzopoulos, J. Eckert, K.D. Knudsen, J.O. Fossum, Scientific Reports 8, 11827 (2018).
5. Intercalation and Retention of Carbon Dioxide in a Smectite Clay promoted by Interlayer Cation, L. Michels, J.O. Fossum, Z. Rozynek, H. Hemmen, K. Rustenberg, P.A. Sobas, G.N. Kalantzopoulos, K.D. Knudsen, M. Janek, T.S. Plivelic, G. J. da Silva, Scientific Reports 5, 8775 (2015).
6. X-ray Studies of Carbon Dioxide Intercalation in Na-Fluorohectorite Clay at Near-Ambient Conditions, H. Hemmen, E.G. Rolseth, D.M. Fonseca, E.L. Hansen, J.O. Fossum, T.S. Plivelic, Langmuir 28, 1678 (2012).

BRT Time, 14:00 – 14:30

Fluid dynamics at nanoporous media: highlights from multiscale molecular simulations

Caetano R. Mirandaa

aIFUSP - crmiranda@usp.br.


The fluid dynamics at nanoscale pores can be significantly distinct from the bulk counterparts due to the spatial confinement and surface effects. In this talk, I will highlight some recent contributions from our group on fluid transport phenomena at nanoporous media. We apply a hierarchical multiscale molecular modelling approach to probe the dynamics of fluids over multiple pore scales. The porous media ranges from well-controlled Silica (SiO2) and Carbon nanotubes (CNTs), which are used in a wide range of applications that go from sensors to nanofluidics to complex porous materials such as cement and clays. A plethora of fluids (water, CO2 and natural gas) has been explored. Altogether, our observations could provide an overall view of the effects on fluid properties and the controlling agents on their dynamics at nano-scale pore-sized media.

BRT Time, 14:30 – 15:00

Skin models

sweat and sebum excretions in vitro

Débora Freitasa



Skin models have been highly noticed in recent times as an alternative to human and animal tests. Animal models involve important ethical issues and may not reflect the nature of the human organism. In addition, the high variability of human essays, the long time and high resource consumption can be avoided by employing in vitro approaches. The testing process has been accelerated lately thanks to the improved reproducibility and lowered cost/time of in vitro technologies 1, 2.

Efficiency tests mimicking human excretions are still in development, and they were not available in the market before the technologies developed by Microfactory (U-Skin™ and Smart Pore™). The efficiency of antiperspirants is associated with a temporary sweat pore clogging by aluminum and glycoproteins aggregates which decreases the amount of sweat. However, until now, there was a lack of mechanistic knowledge regarding this antiperspirant effect both at physicochemical and molecular levels 3.

U-Skin™ and Smart Pore™ fill this gap by providing a biomimetically reproduced excretion of sweat and sebum. They are capable to evaluate the mechanical resistance at high optical resolution in any stage of a cosmetic development.

The innovations are based on patented microfluidic technologies, allowing to analyze physicochemical interactions between artificial skin surface and cosmetics, while reproducing human physiological phenomena of sweat and sebum excretions.

U-Skin™ replicates surface skin characteristics, such as wettability, roughness, texture, pores dimensions and densities. Hundreds of microchannels are embedded into the U-Skin™ to faithfully mimic humans' skin pores (60µm of diameter, 400 pores/cm2). The cosmetics are applied on the surface of U-Skin™ and the artificial excretion of sweat or sebum is followed over time (1 image per second) at pore scale. The interactions are optically measured simultaneously, with colored high-resolution images and by parallel and cross-polarizations. An accurate assessment of performance is obtained within few hours, comprising qualitative and quantitative analysis. U-Skin™ allows the research on two main areas: Firstly, in vivo/in vitro correlation studies, which are based on measurements made on volunteers and compared with the ones obtained with U-Skin™. Secondly, improvement of data analysis, which could highlight statistical indicators to be even more accurate than actually.

Smart Pore™ allows the correlation of the antiperspirants efficiency by analyzing the clot pressure resistance (burst pressure) in microfluidic pores, which reproduces biomimetically human sweating. The process replicates sweat glands and pores dimensions, as well as the physiological phenomena of perspiration. The measurement of burst pressure is a novel and valid alternative to in vivo testing. Furthermore, this method provides new information on antiperspirant mechanisms unavailable from in vivo essays, such as kinetics of clot formation and depth of clot penetration.


1. Dabrowska, A. K. et al. Materials used to simulate physical properties of human skin. Ski. Res. Technol. 22, 3–14 (2016).
2. Rabost-Garcia, G., Farré-Lladós, J. & Casals-Terré, J. Recent impact of microfluidics on skin models for perspiration simulation. Membranes (Basel). 11, 1–13 (2021).
3. Sakhawoth, Y. et al. Real time observation of the interaction between aluminium salts and sweat under microfluidic conditions. Sci. Rep. 11, 1–15 (2021).

BRT Time, 15:00 – 15:30

NMR signals from mechanically oscillating samples in the presence of magnetic field gradients – a simple Logging-While-Drilling simulator

Tito J. Bonagambaa

aUSP (São Carlos)


We will present an NMR equipment we developed to simulate well logging measurements under logging-while-drilling (LWD) condition, using a single-sided magnet. Both the theory needed to interpret the data and the first results obtained will be discussed. Additionally, we will briefly describe the research activities of our research group in the field of NMR in Porous Media.

Day 2 (Aug 02, 2022)

BRT Time, 09:00 – 09:15 (Opening Session)

Porous media science and technology research opportunities in the new synchrotron source Sirius at LNLS

Harry Westfahl Jra

aDirector LNLS/CNPEM


Sirius is a 4th generation 3 GeV synchrotron light source in operation at LNLS since 2020. The first phase of beamlines is almost completed offering a variety of techniques and opening many scientific opportunities in different fields. In this presentation, I will give the status of the Sirius accelerators and of the first phase beamlines, highlighting the new techniques that will be available and the opportunities for porous media research.

BRT Time, 09:15 – 09:45

Multiphase Flow in Porous Media - From 4D Imaging to a New Theory

Steffen Berga, Ryan T. Armstrongb, James E. McClurec

aShell Amsterdam & Imperial College
bUniversity of New South Wales
cVirginia Tech


Multiphase flow in porous media occurs in a very wide range of applications in science and technology which play a key role in the energy transition. Examples range from storage of CO2 and hydrogen in subsurface geological formations to transport in gas diffusion layers in fuel cells and electrolysis. In most of these applications which are often integrated processes involving multiple components, at different length scales, the formulation of transport equations needs to be done at an effective, continuum "Darcy" scale. However, to date, no really fully satisfactory upscaling from pore to Darcy exists for multiphase flow in porous media. The most commonly used formulation is entirely phenomenological. That has important consequences, such as the formulation of capillary pressure, one of the key parameters, depends only on the wetting phase saturation as independent variable and is hysteretic. That is of course undesirable and leads to additional practical complications. The capillary pressure hysteresis is only one example. The perhaps bigger issue is that the transport equation is entirely phenomenological and we do not have a rigorous understanding how to predict and influence relative permeability. This status-quo exists now since several decades. Only very recently the breakthrough comes in sight. Direct imaging of transport and displacements at pore scale at their natural lenght and time scale in-situ inside the porous media has become the single most important factor that brings significant progress to the field. Synchrotron beamline-based fast X-ray computed micro tomography is perhaps the most important tool. It has provided the key insight that led to the discovery that capillary pressure is not hysteretic at all, but the perceived hysteresis is only a consequence of using an insufficient number of state variables. The full set of state variables are represented by the 4 Minkowski functionals (volume/saturation, interfacial area, mean curvature ~ capillary pressure, and integral Gaussian curvature which is related to the fluid topology). The underlying principle is purely of geometric nature, and does not require any complicated thermodynamic formulation. The success of 4D imaging continues playing an important role. In particular the recognition that even under "steady-state" conditions during multiphase flow there are significant fluctuations at an energy scale much larger than thermal fluctuations, we are able to fully appreciate that multiphase flow is almost never static but fluctuating. Honoring the fluctuating nature of the multiphase transport, we are not able to derive from first principles the 2-phase Darcy flow equations for stationary conditions, where the collective energy dynamics of all fluctuating quantities together averages out. That concept does not require the traditional representative elementary volume concept where averaging out of each individual parameters is required (which is something that in practice does not happen at relevant lengths scales). In essence, we are now in the position to intuitively understand what relative permeability actually is. This has been made possible through the insights gained by a combination of modern imaging techniques (mainly synchrotron-based fast X-ray computed micro-tomography) in combination with direct pore scale numerical simulations (which have been validated against the 4D imaging), which provided the basis for theory development.

BRT Time, 09:45 – 10:15

Synchrotron techniques to elucidate soil processes and properties

Talita Ferreiraa



This talk aims at presenting current efforts at Sirius to investigate Soil related processes and properties, using different beamlines/techniques. It will include X-ray microtomography studies on: i) permeability of soil aggregates (i.e., at the microscale), ii) X-ray dose estimation on roots growing in soil material, and iii) a sample environment designed for in-situ and time-resolved experiment for investigations of the soil water retention at the Mogno beamline from the Sirius Synchrotron. Another sample environment for integrating Transmission and Fluorescence X-ray tomography (at the Mogno and Carnaúba beamlines) to look at both physical and chemical aspects of root growth will be presented. The first Coherent Diffraction Imaging (CDI) of a soil microaggregate, generated at the Cateretê beamline, will be shown as part of a research on phosphate retention and recovery from soil microaggregates. With these diverse examples, it is hoped to stimulate ideas of potential experiments at some of the cutting edge and promising beamlines at Sirius to understand important phenomena occurring in Soils.


Ferreira, T.R., Archilha, N.L., Pires, L.F., 2022. An analysis of three XCT-based methods to determine the intrinsic permeability of soil aggregates. J. Hydrol. 612, 128024. doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/J.JHYDROL.2022.128024.
Ferreira, T.R., Pires, L.F., Reichardt, K., 2022. 4D X-Ray Computed Tomography in Soil Science: an Overview and Future Perspectives at Mogno/Sirius. Brazilian J. Phys. 2022 522 52, 1–14. doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/S13538-021-01043-X.
Hesterberg, D., Ferreira, T.R., Bordonal, R. de O., Souza-Filho, L.F., 2022. Synchrotron techniques for assessing soil processes and properties related to agricultural challenges in Brazil, in: Souza-Filho, L.F., Silva, R.C. da, César, F.R.C.F., Souza, C.M.M. (Eds.), Tópicos Em Ciência Do Solo. Sociedade Brasileira de Ciência do Solo, p. 486.

BRT Time, 10:15 – 10:45

In-situ XRD using synchrotron light and the future perspectives at Sirius

Cristiane Rodellaa



Powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD) is a technique to investigate the long-range order of polycrystalline materials. PXRD enables both qualitative and quantitative crystalline phase analysis to determine the structure of materials, probe structural disorders and defects as well as characterize structural changes as a function of changing sample environment (in situ measurement) or during a material intended application (operando measurement) [1–8]. Structural properties of advanced materials are better accessed using high-quality diffraction data obtained from synchrotron X-ray diffraction (SR-PXRD). It is especially the case when structural parameters are acquired during in-situ or operando measurements [2,9–12]. High photon fluxes from the synchrotron source and the latest generation photon detectors allow for high temporal resolution. This instrumentation enables scientists to follow even rapid kinetic changes within a system while maintaining structural data acquisition [9,11,12]. The Paineira beamline will be dedicated to X-ray diffraction (SR-PXRD) experiments of polycrystalline materials housed within Sirius – the extremely brilliant fourth-generation synchrotron at the Brazilian Synchrotron Light Laboratory (LNLS) [13,14]. Paineira beamline is currently under construction, with commissioning starting in 2023. The beamline has been designed to be efficient and flexible for data acquisition. Furthermore, Paineira will allow PXRD experiments under in-situ and operando conditions at pressures up to 80 bar and temperatures from ambient to 850 using a plug-flow capillary and an automated module to control the gas flow and pressure during measurements. This presentation will be focused on the instrumental capabilities of Paineira for in situ PXRD experiments and future possibilities.


[1] Fitch A 2019 Synchrotron radiation and powder diffraction 51–65.
[2] Parker J E, Thompson S P, Cobb T M, Yuan F, Potter J, Lennie A R, Alexander S, Tighe C J, Darr J A, Cockcroft J C and Tang C C 2011 High-throughput powder diffraction on beamline I11 at Diamond J. Appl. Crystallogr. 44 102–10.
[3] Stephens P W 2019 The physics of diffraction from powders 252–62.
[4] Reynolds R C 2018 1. Principles of Powder Diffraction Mod. Powder Diffr. 1–18.
[5] Von Dreele R B 2019 Powder diffraction peak profiles 7 263–9.
[6] Rebuffi L, Del Río M S, Busetto E and Scardi P 2017 Understanding the instrumental profile of synchrotron radiation X-ray powder diffraction beamlines J. Synchrotron Radiat. 24 622–35.
[7] Altomare A, Cuocci C, Moliterni A and Rizzi R 2019 Indexing a powder diffraction pattern 270–81.
[8] Kern A 2019 Instrumentation and laboratory X-ray scattering techniques International Tables for Crystallography - volume H.
[9] van Beek W and Pattison P 2019 Cells for in situ powder-diffraction investigation of chemical reactions 189–99.
[10] Tang C C, Thompson S P, Hill T P, Wilkin G R and Wagner U H 2007 Design of powder diffraction beamline (BL-I11) at Diamond Zeitschrift fur Krist. Suppl. 1 153–8.
[11] Ehrenberg H, Hinterstein M, Senyshyn A and Fuess H 2019 Powder diffraction in external electric and magnetic fields 174–88.
[12] Herklotz M, Weiß J, Ahrens E, Yavuz M, Mereacre L, Kiziltas-Yavuz N, Dräger C, Ehrenberg H, Eckert J, Fauth F, Giebeler L and Knapp M 2016 A novel high-throughput setup for in situ powder diffraction on coin cell batteries J. Appl. Crystallogr. 49 340–5.
[13] Westfahl H, Lordano Luiz S A, Meyer B C and Meneau F 2017 The coherent radiation fraction of low-emittance synchrotrons J. Synchrotron Radiat. 24 566–75.
[14] Liu L, Neuenschwander R T and Rodrigues A R D 2019 Synchrotron radiation sources in Brazil Philos. Trans. R. Soc. A Math. Phys. Eng. Sci. 377.

BRT Time, 10:45 – 11:15

Carbon dioxide injection and capillary trapping in digital rock

Mathias Steinera



Climate change due to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions into the atmosphere is a global issue and its mitigation requires advancements in the areas of CO2 capture, injection, and storage. Sequestration by means of CO2 injection into the pore space of geological formations may present ample long-term storage opportunity. However, the physical and chemical processes that limit efficient storage of CO2 are poorly understood. More research is needed to devise and optimize CO2 injection methods for exploring the long-term storage potential of geological formations.

For exploring pore scale processes leading to capillary trapping and storage of CO2, we have developed a pore scale flow simulator research prototype. Based on image data acquired with X-ray micro-tomography of geological samples, the simulator creates a digital rock representation with high-accuracy capillary network representations for numerical and statistical analyses of the connected pore space [1]. In a second step, within the geometrical boundaries provided by the capillary network model, the tool enables flow simulations with complex fluids including CO2 and brine at realistic reservoir conditions.

In this presentation, I will report recent results of our team’s research of flow scenarios in digital rock representations with supercritical CO2 at pore scale. Specifically, we have explored the microscopic properties of sandstone samples by creating centerline-based capillary networks based on a new algorithm with increased geometrical detail. We have performed series of simulations at elevated pressures and temperatures in which brine is displacing the CO2 phase and vice versa, for quantifying the saturation levels of CO2 in the capillary network. In addition, I will discuss the extension of the simulations for predicting effects of CO2 conversion. The inclusion of CO2 related dissolution and mineralization dynamics, along with improved resolution and accuracy in capillary network representations, is a critical need for next-generation CO2 storage simulations in digital rock.


[1] Neumann, R. F., Barsi-Andreeta, M., Lucas-Oliveira, E., Barbalho, H., Trevizan, W. A., Bonagamba, T. J., Steiner, M. B. High accuracy capillary network representation in digital rock reveals permeability scaling functions. Sci Rep 11, 11370 (2021). doi: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-90090-0.

BRT Time, 13:15 – 13:30 (Opening Session)

Advances in machine learning for porous media science and engineering

Fabio Pereira dos Santosa



In recent years, machine learning techniques have proved to be suitable for predicting complex patterns or solving deterministic equations. The porous media field has been taking advantage of ML models, especially for problems with an extensive range of scales. This presentation will introduce advances and developments in machine learning algorithms for porous media and geoscience applications. Several examples will be described, from physics-guided machine learning for fluid flow in a heterogeneous porous media to its characterization, such as porosity or permeability. Herein, I will also discuss some possible future directions in the field.

BRT Time, 13:30 – 14:00


Siân Jonesa*, Siavash Kahrobaeib, Niels van Wageningenb, Rouhi Farajzadeha,b

aDelft University of Technology, The Netherlands
bShell Global Solutions International B.V., The Netherlands



An understanding of the dynamics of CO2 foams flowing through a reservoir rock is useful for many sub-surface applications, including both enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and CO2 storage (for CCS). A series of experiments have been carried out to investigate the impacts of surfactant type and concentration on the behaviour of super-critical CO2 foams flowing through a high-permeability Indiana Limestone. The stability of the three candidate surfactants - an APG, a betaine and a sultaine - was tested at 60°C for over 4 months. All surfactants were found to be stable over the period of the test. Foam-flood tests were then carried out with super-critical CO2 to determine the basic foaming behaviour of the three surfactants. The concentration response of the surfactants was also investigated. For all the surfactants, reducing the surfactant concentration resulted in a reduction of the transition foam quality, fg*, and the maximum apparent foam viscosity. A comparison of the foaming behaviour of the three surfactants with two different gases, where dissolution of the gas into the surfactant solution is expected (CO2) and not-expected (N2), is also presented.

BRT Time, 14:00 – 14:30

How simplifying capillary effects can affect the traveling wave solution profiles of the foam flow in porous media

Grigori Chapiroa



Neglecting or simplifying capillary pressure is a common starting point for analyzing the fluid displacement in porous media. From the mathematical perspective, the effect of such simplifications was addressed in the context of conservation laws. In this talk, we address the issue in the context of traveling waves. Mainly, we are interested in the case of one-dimensional incompressible two-phase gas–liquid flow in a porous medium in the presence of foam. We show two physically admissible intuitive simplifications resulting in solutions, which are qualitatively inaccurate in the variable describing foam texture. Besides these examples, we also show one procedure, which produces qualitatively accurate solution approximation. In order to sustain that our conclusions are not connected to any numerical error, we investigate the existence of the traveling wave solutions in all examples. We stress that the profile differences are related to the dynamical system behavior in the phase space. All semi-analytical results were verified through direct numerical simulations, evidencing the applicability of the presented analysis.

BRT Time, 14:30 – 15:00

A Physics-Aware Deep Learning Surrogate for Reverse Time Migration

Fernando Alves Rochinhaa



In seismic exploration, the interpretation of seismic images is key to decision-making. Seismic imaging is affected by the presence of multiple sources of uncertainty. Reverse time migration (RTM) is a high-resolution depth migra- tion approach for extracting seismic imaging in complex geologic structures. RTM is time-consuming and data- intensive. Also, when embedded in an uncertainty quan- tification algorithm (like the Monte Carlo method), RTM shows a manifold increase in its complexity and cost due to the high input-output dimensionality. Hence, one of the main challenges facing uncertainty quantification in seismic imaging is reducing the computational cost of the analysis. This work evaluates physics-aware deep learning strategies to act as surrogate models for RTM under uncertainty. In- puts are an ensemble of velocity fields expressing the uncer- tainty and the outputs, the seismic images. Here, we eval- uate the power of machine learning, particularly generative adversarial nets (GANs), to learn probability distributions from the data, potentially modeling uncertainties in the seismic images. Also, we explore the versatility of the deep learning models to build a surrogate from data generated by different levels of fidelity. We show by numerical exper- imentation that the surrogate models can reproduce the seismic images accurately and, more importantly, the un- certainty propagation from the input velocity fields to the image ensemble.

BRT Time, 15:00 – 15:30

Hydraulic Transmissibility Upscaling in Karstified Carbonates

Patricia Pereiraa



We develop a new methodology to compute hydraulic transmissibility between karst-conduits and rock matrix in carbonate reservoirs. Such a parameter quantifies the mass exchange between these two geological objects and can be explored in EDKM-type models (Embedded Discrete Karst Model) via non-neighboring connections. The upscaling procedure adopted hinges on the karst index concept, whose underlying physics relies on the generalization of the traditional Peaceman’s theory of well index to more complex scenarios of coupled flow in karst conduit systems displaying general non-circular cross sections. Within the proposed procedure, we adopt the flow-based upscaling method to compute mass transfer functions between conduits and matrix for several configurations of conduits lying within cells of a coarse grid. The corresponding transmissibility value associated with each scenario is stored in a database. Subsequently, a machine learning model, consisting of a random forest regressor, is trained on the numerical results in the dataset, using information related to the geometry of the karst-conduits as input attributes, and the transmissibilities computed with numerical simulations as target values. Numerical experiments are carried-out exhibiting the magnitude of the transmissibility for certain conduit arrangements, along with the magnitude determined by the machine learning algorithm. The results illustrate the potential of the methodology proposed herein. The novel approach can be applied to both aquifers and carbonate reservoirs, providing more accurate predictions and enhancing the management of such resources.


The Brazilian InterPore chapter has been very active in collaborating with us at the InterPore Young Academy and we thank you very much for that! We have talks from 5 early-career researchers from Brazil in the Porous Media Tea Time Talks YouTube channel, which also includes a special session devoted exclusively to the Brazilian InterPore chapter. Links below:

Session 12 - 1st of 2021! Brazilian Interpore Special
Session 14 - Navid Bizmark (Princeton University) & Paola Ferraz (DAC Unicamp)
Session 16 - Oliver Paulin (Oxford) & Thiago Quinelato (Federal University of Juiz de Fora)
Session 18 - Rosmery Quispe Zavala (UFJF) and Lucas Mejia (UT Austin)

(NEW!) The 4th Br Interpore lectures are now available! Check the links below:

Session I : Porous Media & Green World
Session II : Porous Media & Smart Materials
Session III : Porous Media & Oil Sciences
Session IV : Porous Media & Microfluidics

Official Poster of BR InterPore 2022


Download the poster: Low Resolution (PNG), High Resolution (PDF)

Organizing Committee

  • Alexei A. Mailybaev - Laboratory of Fluid Dynamics – FLUID/IMPA, Brazil
  • Eduardo Abreu - Department of Applied Mathematics - IMECC/UNICAMP, Brazil
  • Grigori Chapiro - Department of Mathematics - DM/UFJF, Brazil
  • Marcio Murad - Department of Computational Modeling - COMOD/LNCC, Brazil
  • Marcio Carvalho – Department of Mechanical Engineering – DEM/PUC-Rio, Brazil
  • Sidarta Lima – Department of Applied Mathematics – DM/UFRN, Brazil


  • Caetano Rodrigues Miranda – USP
  • Cristiane Rodella – LNLS/CNPEM
  • Débora Freitas – Microfactory
  • Didier Lasseux – University of Bordeaux
  • Fabio Pereira dos Santos – UFRJ
  • Fernando Rochinha – UFRJ
  • Grigori Chapiro – UFJF
  • Harry Westfahl Jr – Director LNLS/CNPEM
  • Jon Otto Fossum – NTNU (Norway)
  • Patricia Pereira – LNCC
  • Mathias Steiner – IBM-Rio
  • Rien van Genuchten – Utrecht University
  • Siân Jones – TU Delft
  • Pedro Leite Silva Dias – USP
  • Sebastião Mardônio Lucena – UFC
  • Sibele Pergher – UFRN
  • Steffen Berg – Shell Amsterdam & Imperial College
  • Talita Ferreira – LNLS/CNPEM
  • Tito Bonagamba – USP (São Carlos)