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Lab Members

Phys Sci Res Assoc, Energy Resources Engineering

Anshul received her B.Tech in Chemical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi, India, in 2003. She received her M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Petroleum Engineering from Stanford University in 2009. The title of her thesis was "Adaptive Implicit Method for Thermal-Compositional Reservoir Simulation". She worked at ExxonMobil Upstream Research in Houston as a Sr. Research Engineer, before joining as a Research Associate in the ERE department. She is also the Executive Director of the Stanford Center for Carbon Storage. Her current research deals with the numerical simulation analysis of leakage risk and mitigation for CO2 sequestration operations. Additionally, she is a member of the Supri A research group where she is studying steam injection in diatomite.

Masters Student in Energy Resources Engineering
Ph.D. Student in Energy Resources Engineering Masters Student in Energy Resources Engineering
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Energy Resources Engineering

Maartje Boon joined Stanford University in 2017 as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Energy Resources Engineering in the School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences. She combines experimental techniques involving X-Ray CT imaging with numerical modelling to look at the impact of rock structure heterogeneities on multiphase flow properties and its implications for Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).

Boon obtained her PhD degree in Petroleum Engineering from Imperial College London where she was part of the Qatar Carbon Capture and Storage Research Centre (QCCSRC). She developed a new experimental technique to observe solute spreading and mixing in natural consolidated rock. She used experimentally obtained statistical rock descriptions to numerically investigate the impact of rock heterogeneity on reactive transport in porous media.

Her ambition is to become an expert in experimental imaging techniques as well as numerical modelling of reactive transport in porous media. In the future, she would like to have her own research group at one of the leading universities in the field of Energy Sustainability.

Ph.D. Student in Energy Resources Engineering

Jacques de Chalendar is a doctoral candidate in the Energy Resources Engineering department at Stanford University and a Precourt State Grid Corporation of China Graduate Student Fellow through the Bits and Watts initiative. He is advised by Profs. Sally Benson and Peter Glynn.

His PhD research focuses on applying state-of-the-art computational tools, at the intersection of optimization and statistics, to energy and carbon management problems. A case in point for this research is the Stanford Energy Systems Innovations project, the campus district energy system, which provides a unique source of real data as well as an ideal test-bed for new ideas and control algorithms.

During his MSc, supervised by Prof. Sally Benson, he worked on image processing techniques and physical simulation models to further our understanding of the micron-scale behavior of trapped carbon dioxide in deep saline aquifers, and gain insights as to the long-term security of geological sequestration.

He was previously an intern at a San-Francisco-based energy management startup, Growing Energy Labs, Inc. (Geli) and in the Electricity Infrastructure group at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL).

Phys Sci Res Assoc, Department of Energy Resources Engineering

My research aims to advance our knowledge of fluid flow and transport in porous media and improve simulation and prediction by observing and characterizing complex flow processes at different scales. I have applied my research to carbonate reservoirs, water resources and sustainability and CO2 storage in geologic formations. Most of my work centers on developing novel laboratory methods and experiments that provide unique datasets that are of great importance to better identify and understand the relevant small-scale mechanisms controlling subsurface environment dynamics, and their interplays.

In particular I have placed a strong focus on investigating the effect of reservoir rock structure on single reactive flow and multiphase flow by conducting pore-scale and core-scale core-flooding experiments on real rocks coupled with X-ray computed tomography imaging.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Energy Resources Engineering

Meritxell Gran is a Postdoctoral fellow in the Benson Lab since 2016 where she has been applying her knowledge on multiphase flow to carbon sequestration studies. She works on multiphase flow experiments in fractured basalt rocks to study the nature of the multiphase fluid interactions in a fracture. These experiments combine core-flooding with two different scan imaging techniques: X-Ray CT and PET (Positron Emission Tomography). From these, she obtains fracture relative permeability curves and gains understanding on the fundamentals of multiphase flow in fractures.

Meritxell is a geological engineer and she obtained her doctoral degree in the Hydrogeology Group, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC). During her thesis she studied the behavior of water and energy fluxes in dry soils, focusing on evaporation and water-energy transfer mechanisms. She used two different scales, laboratory- and field-scale, and applied two methodologies, experiments and numerical modeling.

Ph.D. Student in Energy Resources Engineering
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Geophysics
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Energy Resources Engineering

Michael is a postdoctoral fellow whose interests encompass international development projects requiring productive energy use and how to increase their success through transdisciplinary approaches. He has a dual appointment in the Precourt Institute for Energy and the Department of Energy Resources Engineering. His current work focuses on understanding and reducing produce supply chain inefficiency in India from a systems perspective, while identifying and testing scalable interventions with on-the-ground partners and end-users. Michael completed a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering as an NSF Graduate Research Fellow at Stanford. His thesis focused on using fundamental research to develop design descriptors for improving solar-to-fuel and fuel-to-electricity conversion using electrochemistry.

Michael’s interest in social and environmental impact work began in high school as the president of the region’s youth-led tobacco free coalition. The coalition was runner-up for National Youth Advocates of the Year given by the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids when Idaho (his home state) went tobacco-free. At Kenyon College, he self-designed a major in Chemical Physics to understand how related disciplines approach challenges in renewable energy technology development while co-captaining the men’s NCAA National Champion swim team.

After graduating in 2009, Michael moved to Germany as a Transatlantic Renewable Energy Fellow to research low-cost solar cells while learning about the sociopolitical environment that placed Germany as a global leader in renewable energy integration. While there, he attended the UNFCCC COP15 climate summit with two other fellows. Leading up to and during the highly anticipated event, they wrote and published an educational blog for the public. After leaving Germany, Michael lived in Southeast Asia as a Henry Luce Scholar to gain first-hand experience with renewable energy integration in unelectrified regions of Laos and Cambodia. This experience informed his desire to continue work on energy inequality and development around the world.

Ph.D. Student in Energy Resources Engineering

Hailun Ni obtained her B.S. degree with honor and M.S. degree from Energy Resources Engineering department at Stanford University and is currently a third year Ph.D. student in the Benson Lab. Her thesis focuses on characterizing and predicting the amount of CO2 capillary heterogeneity trapping as well as CO2 snap-off trapping through both experiments and simulation. She conducts CO2/water coreflooding experiments at realistic reservoir conditions in order to see how different degrees and types of heterogeneity in a rock core affect its post-imbibition CO2 trapping ability. She is also in the process of developing a reduced physics simulator in Matlab based on macroscopic percolation algorithm in order to match and predict experimental results.

Masters Student in Energy Resources Engineering

As a student, researcher, employee, and activist, Austin Park extends his passion for climate action through all areas of his life. He is in his first year as an MS candidate for Energy Resources Engineering. His research focuses on understanding the holistic effects of adding intermittent renewable generation to the grid. He is part of the Western Interconnection Data Analytics Project (WIDAP) research team, which is analyzing a large data set of emissions and generation data in the west. Austin co-directed the 2017 UCLA Sustainability Action Research Teams, a student-designed and student-facilitated research program that connects student researchers with campus stakeholders to address UCLA's most pressing sustainability needs. Austin worked for three years as a UCLA Carbon Neutrality Fellow. In this capacity, he developed engagement efforts for the Carbon Neutrality Initiative, assisted with UCLA’s carbon neutrality planning, and contributed to UC system-wide decarbonization research. Austin has worked as an energy efficiency engineer for Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and as a data analyst for the California Air Resources Board. He co-led the 2016 Sustainability Action Research Team, which secured an $18,000 grant to introduce stormwater capture infrastructure at UCLA. In May of 2015, Austin represented the United States and UCLA at Make It Work, an international simulation of COP21. At the negotiations, he successfully spearheaded the effort to establish an international carbon market. He is a Regents Scholar, Alumni Scholar, and received the first-ever UCLA Student Sustainability Leadership Award. Austin loves to surf and play piano, and he never misses a chance to jump in the ocean or go on a hike.

Ph.D. Student in Energy Resources Engineering