February 26, 2008Kishore Mohanty, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at the UH Cullen College of Engineering, will receive one of four 2008 IOR (Improved Oil Recovery) Pioneer Awards at the 15th Annual SPE/DOE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium in April. The award is given every two years to researchers worldwide who have dedicated a lifetime of work to enhancing the process of oil and/or gas recovery.
The majority of Mohanty's research focuses on retrieving more petroleum out of abandoned reservoirs using various methods of surfactant and gas (e.g., carbon dioxide) flooding. He estimates that oil companies pump only 30-40% of the petroleum out of most reservoirs, leaving the majority behind due to the difficulties surrounding its recovery.
"If we can develop a cost-effective method to retrieve more oil out of the existing reservoirs, then we will have a major impact on upstream oil industry and our nation's economy," he said. "The work on oil recovery is very important, but it is also very challenging. We have a lot of work to do."
Mohanty was honored last November as a SPE Distinguished Member for 2007.