Dr. Ali Shafiei is currently a Professor (Assist.) of Petroleum Engineering in the School of Mining and Geosciences, Nazarbayev University. He is the founder and director of Shafiei’s Advanced EOR & Flow Assurance Lab. So far he has graduated 9 MSc students. The Shafiei’s Lab currently has 14 team members plus 2 admin assistants.
He obtained his Ph.D. (March 2013) under supervision of Prof. Maurice B. Dusseault in “Thermal Heavy Oil Recovery and Petroleum Reservoir Geomechanics” from the University of Waterloo in Canada. Dr. Shafiei has worked in different countries and various positions as Assistant Professor, Research Associate, Postdoctoral Fellow, and Consultant of petroleum engineering, geoscience, and geomechanics prior to joining the Nazarbayev University in September 2017. He is the founding team member of Petroleum Engineering Program in Nazarbayev University.
Dr. Shafiei’s current research interests include EOR/IOR (i.e., thermal, chemical, and nano processes), flow assurance, asphaltene precipitation and inhibition, application of AI and ML in petroleum engineering, nanofluidic and macrofluidic studies, application of Molecular Dynamics Simulation in EOR and flow assurance studies, well logging and formation evaluation, and petroleum geomechanics.
Dr. Shafiei has over a decade of Canadian and international research, graduate supervision, teaching, training, and consulting/industry experience in the petroleum Exploration & Production (E&P) industry. He was a scientific adviser to the Alberta Department of Energy (Alberta, Canada) in 2014 served as a member of the Innovative Energy Technology Program (IETP 2014) to review progress reports on various full scale field trials that the Alberta DoE was involved with various oil and gas companies in Canada on heavy oil recovery and geological CO2 sequestration. Dr. Shafiei is also a long time active member of the SPE and EAGE. In 2018, he became an official short course instructor for EAGE with his unique and signature short course entitled: “Introduction to Heavy Oil: Genesis, Properties, Distribution, Recovery Technologies, and Upgrading.”
Available positions in Shafiei’s Lab
A number of openings (~15 positions) as of January 2021 are available in Dr. Shafiei’s lab including MSc and PhD positions, Postodctoral Fellowship (PDF), Research Assistant (RA) (i.e., both BSc and MSc holders), and undergraduate research positions (i.e., summer internship).
The interested candidates are encouraged to contact Dr. Shafiei in this regard. Graduates of Bolashak program and alumni of PE/CHE programs (in English only) from Kazakhstani universities (i.e., NU, KBTU, and Satbayev) are highly encouraged to apply. Highly qualified international applications are also welcome. The selection process is merits based and highly competitive based on applicants’ academic background, research skills and experience, and English writing skills.
Current funded projects (2019-2022)
- Experimental, modeling (i.e., numerical modeling, and molecular dynamics simulation studies), and simulation studies of low salinity water flooding and its variants in both sandstone and carbonate reservoirs. This project has started from May 2019 and will continue till December 31, 2021 through a competitive Faculty Development Competitive Research Program (FDCRP) grant awarded by the Nazarbayev University.
- Asphaltene characterization, thermodynamics modeling and molecular dynamics simulation of asphaltene precipitation, deasphalting process, development and lab/field testing of novel asphaltene inhibitors, and nanofluidic and microfluidics studies. This project has started from January 2020 and will continue till December 31, 2022 through a highly competitive Collaborative Research Proposal (CRP) grant awarded by the Nazarbayev University.
The total amount of the funding received is $600,000. Both projects appreciate from extensive collaborations with high caliber researchers and advanced labs from universities in the U.S., Canada, and Malaysia plus scientists from local partner universities in Kazakhstan.
Other Research Interests
In addition to the above-mentioned areas, Dr. Shafiei has research interests in various aspects of reservoir monitoring tools development and application, leaky hydrocarbon wells (i.e., environmental impacts, policy, and enhanced approaches for well cementation and well abandonment practices), petroleum economics, E&P technology management, future of oil, emerging technologies, and energy policy.
Teaching and Courses
Dr. Shafiei is a very passionate lecturer and comes from a family of teachers. He has a great interest in developing and teaching courses, psychology of learning and teaching process, and is interested in using innovations in teaching and evaluation methods. He completed a series of workshops on various aspects of university teaching, course development, exam design, evaluation strategies and techniques, and technical and scientific proposal writing and has received a certificate for completion of the workshops from the University Of Waterloo Center for Teaching Excellence in 2013. He holds Professional Certificate in Academic Practice from Advance HE, UK, 2018-2019. He also has received a certificate for completion of Doctoral Supervision Workshop from the UK Higher Education Academy held in Nazarbayev University in 2017.
He has developed and taught 10+ undergraduate and graduate courses in various topics and disciplines (not including professional training short courses or workshops for the E&P industry) in various universities in the past 20 years. In addition, he has extensive experience in developing curriculum for Petroleum Engineering, equipping labs, and program accreditation process.
- PETE 206 Petroleum Rock & Fluid Properties
- PETE 303 Well Logging & Formation Evaluation
- PETE 504 Advanced Well Logging & Formation Evaluation
- SMG 520 Research Methods
- PETE 610 Advanced Petroleum Geomechanics
Previously taught courses
- Introduction to Natural Resources Extraction
- Introduction to Petroleum Engineering
- Geology for Petroleum Engineers
- Geology for Mining Engineers
- Fundamentals of Petrophysics
- Fundamentals of Rock Mechanics
- Fundamentals of Petroleum Geomechanics
- Fundamentals of Drilling Engineering
- Fundamentals of Reservoir Engineering
- Fundamentals of Heavy Oil Resources and Recovery
- Petroleum Geology
Dr. Shafiei is a very active member of the scientific community:
- He is the Faculty Advisor for Nazarbayev University SPE Student Chapter (NUSPE) where he oversees and supports the activities of the NUSPE since 2018. The NUSPE won the First Place in the 2020 Petrobowl Regional Qualifier in the Caspian Region. This is for the first time where a SPE Student Chapter from Republic of Kazakhstan claims the first place in Petrobowl Regional Qualifier.
- In March 2020, Dr. Shafiei was appointed as an Editorial Board Member (EBM) and Editor for the Bulletin of Engineering Geology and the Environment (BOEG) a peer-reviewed scientific journal covering research in geoscience. BOEG is the official journal of the International Association of Engineering Geology and the Environment (IAEG). The 2019 impact factor of the journal is 3.04, a Quartile 1 journal, and it is listed amongst top 10 Engineering-Geological journals since 2019. Bulletin is the scientific reference among the most respected journals in the fields of engineering geology, the environment, and other geoscience since 1970.
- Dr. Shafiei acts regularly as a reviewer for several top international peer-reviewed journals.
- In January 2021, Dr. Shafiei was appointed as a member of the International Society for Rock Mechanics (ISRM) Commission on Petroleum Geomechanics.
Last updated in January 9, 2021 by Ali Shafiei.
Al-Nofli, K., Pourafshary, P., Mosavat, N., Shafiei, A., 2018 In : Energies. 11, 6,
Natural Fractures Characterization and In Situ Stresses Inference in a Carbonate Reservoir—An Integrated Approach
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., Kosari, E., Nouri Taleghani, M., 2018 In : Energies. 11, 2,
Data Analytics Techniques for Performance Prediction of Steamflooding in Naturally Fractured Carbonate Reservoirs
Shafiei, A., Ahmadi, M., Dusseault, M., Elkamel, A., Zendehboudi, S., Chatzis, I., 2018 In : Energies. 11, 2,
PVTX characteristics of oil inclusions from Asmari formation in Kuh-e-Mond heavy oil field in Iran
Shariatinia, Z., Haghighi, M., Shafiei, A., Feiznia, S., Zendehboudi, S., 2015 In : International Journal of Earth Sciences. 104, 3, p. 603-623
Geomechanics of thermal oil production from carbonate reservoirs
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2014 In : Journal of Porous Media. 17, 4, p. 301-321
Estimating hydrogen sulfide solubility in ionic liquids using a machine learning approach
Shafiei, A., Ahmadi, M., Zaheri, S., Baghban, A., Amirfakhrian, A., Soleimani, R., 2014 In : Journal of Supercritical Fluids. 95, p. 525-534
Asphaltene precipitation and deposition in oil reservoirs - Technical aspects, experimental and hybrid neural network predictive tools
Zendehboudi, S., Shafiei, A., Bahadori, A., James, L., Elkamel, A., Lohi, A., 2014 In : Chemical Engineering Research and Design. 92, 5, p. 857-875
Multiple hydrocarbon charging events in Kuh-e-Mond oil field, Coastal Fars: Evidence from biomarkers in oil inclusions
Shariatinia, Z., Feiznia, S., Shafiei, A., Haghighi, M., Mousavi Dehghani, A., Memariani, M., Farhadian, N., 2013 In : Geofluids. 13, 4, p. 594-609
A developed smart technique to predict minimum miscible pressure-eor implications
Zendehboudi, S., Ahmadi, M., Bahadori, A., Shafiei, A., Babadagli, T., 2013 In : Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineering. 91, 7, p. 1325-1337
Mathematical model for steamflooding naturally fractured carbonate reservoirs
Shafiei, A., Zendehboudi, S., Dusseault, M., Chatzis, I., 2013 In : Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research. 52, 23, p. 7993-8008
Geomechanics of thermal viscous oil production in sandstones
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2013 In : Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering. 103, p. 121-139
Droplets evolution during ex situ dissolution technique for geological CO2 sequestration: Experimental and mathematical modelling
Zendehboudi, S., Shafiei, A., Bahadori, A., Leonenko, Y., Chatzis, I., 2013 In : International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control. 13, p. 201-214
Geomechanics of thermal viscous oil production in sandstones
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2013 In : Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering. 103, p. 121
A new screening tool for evaluation of steamflooding performance in Naturally Fractured Carbonate Reservoirs
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., Zendehboudi, S., Chatzis, I., 2013 In : Fuel. 108, p. 502-514
Viscous oil carbonates at elevated temperature
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2012 46th US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium 2012. 4, p. 2597-2608
Rock squeezing prediction by a support vector machine classifier
Shafiei, A., Parsaei, H., Dusseault, M., 2012 46th US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium 2012. American Rock Mechanics Association (ARMA), 1, p. 489-503
Natural fractures characterization in a carbonate heavy oil field
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2012 46th US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium 2012. 3, p. 1870-1881
Inferring in situ stresses in a naturally fractured heavy oil field
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2012 46th US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium 2012. 4, p. 2686-2696
Nonionic surfactant for enhanced oil recovery from carbonates: Adsorption kinetics and equilibrium
Ahmadi, M., Zendehboudi, S., Shafiei, A., James, L., 2012 In : Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research. 51, 29, p. 9894-9905
Modeling of CO2 droplets shrinkage in ex situ dissolution approach with application to geological sequestration: Analytical solutions and feasibility study
Zendehboudi, S., Leonenko, Y., Shafiei, A., Soltani, M., Chatzis, I., 2012 In : Chemical Engineering Journal. 197, p. 448-458
Numerical simulation of free fall and controlled gravity drainage processes in porous media
Zendehboudi, S., Shafiei, A., Chatzis, I., Dusseault, M., 2012 In : Journal of Porous Media. 15, 3, p. 211-232
Empirical modeling of gravity drainage in fractured porous media
Zendehboudi, S., Chatzis, I., Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2011 In : Energy and Fuels. 25, 3, p. 1229-1241
Side View Seismic Location method helps fracture characterization in a giant fractured carbonate heavy oil field in Iran
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., Samimi-Sadeh, B., 2009
Qomroud long tunnel project in iran: Rock mass characterization along the first 10.4 km
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., Sani, F., Sotoudeh, M., 2008
Geotechnical properties of soluble rocks from a dam site in iran
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., Baghdardokht, Z., 2008
Geomechanical properties of a conglomerate from Iran
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2008
Engineering geological problems along the qomroud long tunnel lot no.1 in iran
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., Sani, F., Sotoudeh, M., 2008
Weathering and geomechanical properties of Alvand granitic rocks, western Iran
Shafiei, A., Heidari, M., Dusseault, M., 2007 Proceedings of the 1st Canada-US Rock Mechanics Symposium - Rock Mechanics Meeting Society's Challenges and Demands. 1, p. 835-842
Rock mass characterization at the proposed Khorram-Roud dam site in Western Iran
Shafiei, A., Heidari, M., Dusseault, M., 2007 Proceedings of the 1st Canada-US Rock Mechanics Symposium - Rock Mechanics Meeting Society's Challenges and Demands. 2, p. 1065-1073
Production Technology Selection for Iranian Naturally Fractured Heavy Oil Reserves
Shafiei, A., Dusseault, M., 2007
Qomroud Long Water Conveyance Lot No. 1 in Iran: Tunneling in Difficult Ground Condition- A Case Study
Shafiei, A., 2005
Effects of Changed Geological Conditions on Construction of Qomroud Long Water Conveyance Tunnel Lot No.1 in Iran- A Case Study
Shafiei, A., 2005