Cockrell School of Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin

Matthew Balhoff

Photo of Balhoff, Matthew

Associate Professor

Frank W. Jessen Centennial Fellowship in Petroleum Engineering

Phone: (512) 471-3246
Office: CPE 4.182A

Research Areas: Chemical EOR, Geological CO2 Storage, Reservoir Simulation

Educational Qualifications:

B.S., Chemical Engineering, Louisiana State University, 2000

Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Louisiana State University, 2005

PGE Courses Taught:

PGE 310 (Numerical Methods and Programming)

PGE 312 (Introduction to Petroleum Fluids)

PGE 323M (Reservoir Simulation)

PGE 392K (Reservoir Simulation)


The overall goal of my research is to model, understand, and validate fundamental flow and transport behavior of subsurface fluids with applications to hydrocarbon recovery, carbon sequestration, groundwater remediation, and nuclear waste storage. I perform my research using advanced mathematical and computational tools (pore-scale models and reservoir simulation), but I also conduct experiments. I categorize the goals of my research into four specific areas: (1) Develop unique methods to simulate multiscale flow and transport processes in subsurface media, (2) Predict and quantify nonlinear flow behavior in porous media at the pore scale, (3) Model, characterize, and validate non-Newtonian fluid flow in hydrocarbon recovery processes, and (4) Discover breakthroughs in recovering unconventional hydrocarbons. My expertise is in pore-scale modeling, multiscale modeling, reservoir simulation, and enhanced oil recovery.

Awards & Honors:

SPE Young Member Oustanding Service Award, 2014

Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award for Assistant Professor, 2013

Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) International Teaching Fellow Award, 2012

ASEE Gulf Coast Southwest Outstanding Young Faculty Award, 2011

Recognized by Mortar Board Honor Society as a “preferred professor” at University-wide reception, 2010

PGE Departmental Teaching Award, 2009

Highlighted Publications:

Mehmani, Y., Sun, T., Balhoff, M.T.*, Eichhubl, P. and Bryant, S., “Multiblock Pore-Scale Modeling and Upscaling of Reactive Transport: Application to Carbon Sequestration,” Transport in Porous Media, Volume 95, Issue 2, pages 305-326, October 2012.

Sun, T., Mehmani, Y. and Balhoff, M.T.*, “Hybrid Multiscale Modeling through Direct Substitution of Pore-Scale Models into Near-Well Reservoir Simulators,” Energy & Fuels, Volume 26, Issue 9, pages 5828−5836, September 2012.

Balhoff, M.*, Sanchez-Rivera, D., Kwok, A., Mehmani, Y. and Prodanović, M., “Numerical Algorithms for Network Modeling of Yield Stress and other Non-Newtonian Fluids in Porous Media,” Transport in Porous Media, Volume 93, Issue 3, pages 363-379, July 2012.

Afsharpoor, A., Balhoff, M.T.*, Bonnecaze, R. and Huh, C., “CFD modeling of the effect of polymer elasticity on residual oil saturation at the pore-scale,” Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, Volume 94-95, pages 79-88, September 2012, published online June 26, 2012, doi: 10.1016/j.petrol.2012.06.027.

Balan, H.O., Balhoff, M.T.*, Nguyen, Q.P and Rossen, W.R., “Network Modeling of Gas Trapping and Mobility in Foam Enhanced Oil Recovery,” Energy & Fuels, Volume 25, Issue 9, pages 3974–3987, September 15, 2011.

Jackson, G.T., Balhoff, M.T.*, Huh, C. and Delshad, M., “CFD-based representation of non-Newtonian polymer injectivity for a horizontal well with coupled formation-wellbore hydraulics,” Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, Volume 78, Issue 1, pages 86-95, July 2011.

Balhoff, M.T.*, Lake, L.W., Bommer, P.M., Lewis, R.E., Weber, M.J. and Calderin, J.M., “Rheological and yield stress measurements of non-Newtonian fluids using a Marsh Funnel,” Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, Volume 77, Issues 3-4, pages 393-402, June 2011.

Balhoff, M.T.* and Jackson, K.S., “Beyond reluctance: Promoting learning through an unconventional approach to office hours,” Journal of Applications and Practices in Engineering Education, Volume 1, Number 2, pages 55-69, December 2010.

Balhoff, M.*, Mikelić, A. and Wheeler, M.F., “Polynomial Filtration Laws for Low Reynolds Number Flows Through Porous Media,” Transport in Porous Media, Volume 81, Issue 1, pages 35-60, January 2010.

Balhoff, M.T.* and Wheeler, M.F., “A Predictive Pore-Scale Model for Non-Darcy Flow in Porous Media,” SPE Journal, Volume 14, Number 4, pages 579-587, December 2009.

Balhoff, M.T.*, Thomas, S.G. and Wheeler, M.F., “Mortar coupling and upscaling of pore-scale models,” Computational Geosciences, Volume 12, Number 1, pages 15-27, March 2008.

Sun, T., Mehmani, Y., Bhagmane, J. and Balhoff, M.T.*, “Pore to continuum upscaling of permeability in heterogeneous porous media using mortars,” International Journal of Oil, Gas, and Coal Technology, Volume 5, Nos. 2/3, pages 249-266 (2012).

Petersen, R.T., Balhoff, M.T.* and Bryant, S., “Coupling Multiphase Pore-Scale Models to Account for Boundary Conditions: Application to 2D Quasi-Static Pore Networks,” Journal of Multiscale Modeling, Volume 3, No. 3, pages 109-131, September 2011.