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Photo of Balhoff, Matthew
Office Location: CPE 4.182A

Matthew Balhoff

Professor & Director of Center for Subsurface Energy and the Environment

Bank of America Centennial Professorship in Petroleum Engineering

Department Research Areas:
Geologic Carbon Storage
Enhanced Oil Recovery
Integrated Reservoir Characterization
Hydraulic Fracturing and Reservoir Geomechanics
Reservoir Engineering
Unconventional Resources
Petrophysics and Pore Scale Processes
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

PGE 323K - Reservoir Engineering: Primary Recovery

PGE 323L - Reservoir Engineering: Secondary Recovery


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 Distinguished Member Award, 2017.

SPE Regional Reservoir Description and Dynamics Award (Southwestern North America), 2017.

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.

PGE Departmental Teaching Award, 2009.

Highlighted Publications and Google Scholar Profile:

Sun, Z.; Li, Z.; Espinoza, D.N., Balhoff, M.T., “Fluid-Driven Fractures in Granular Media: New Insights from Numerical Investigations, Physical Review E, v101 (4), 2020, DOI:10.1103/PhysRevE.101.042903

Du, Y., Ke X., Mejia, L., Zhu, P., Balhoff, M., “Microfluidic Investigation of Low Salinity Effects during Oil Recovery: a No-Clay and Time-Dependent Mechanism”, SPE J., Volume 24, Issue 6, December 2019, pages 2841-2858,

Sanchez-Rivera, D., Mohanty, K.K., Balhoff, M.T “Reservoir Simulation and Optimization of CO2 Huff-and-Puff Operations in the Bakken Shale”, Fuel, Volume 147, pages 82-94, May 2015, doi:10.1016/j.fuel.2014.12.062.

Kelly, S., Balhoff, M.T.*, Torres-Verdín, C., “Quantification of Bulk Solution Limits for Liquid and Interfacial Transport in Nano-Confinements”, Langmuir,  Volume 31, Number 7, pages 2167-2179, January 2015, DOI: 10.1021/la504742w

Mehmani, Y.*, Balhoff, M. “Eulerian Network Modeling of Longitudinal Dispersion”, Water Resources Research, volume 51, October 2015, pages 8586–8606, doi:10.1002/2015WR017543

Qi, P., Ehrenfried, D. H., Koh, H., Balhoff, M.T.*, “Reduction of Residual Oil Saturation in Sandstone Cores using Viscoelastic Polymers”, SPE Journal, Volume 22, Issue 2, pages 447-458, April, 2017 (published online 2016), DOI:

Egboga, N., Mohanty, K.*, Balhoff, M.T., "A Feasibility Study of Thermal Stimulation in Unconventional Shale Reservoirs", Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, Volume 154, pages 576-588, June 2017

Yang, H., Balhoff, M.T.*, “Pore-Network Modeling of Particle Retention in Porous Media”, AICHE J., Volume 63, Issue 7, pages 3118-3131, July 2017, doi: 10.1002/aic.15593

Xu, K., Liang, T., Zhu, P.*, Lu, J., Qi, P., Huh, C., Balhoff, M.T., “A 2.5-D Glass Micromodel for Investigation of Multi-phase Flow in Porous Media”, Lab on a Chip, volume 17 (2017), pages 640-646, 2017. DOI: 10.1039/c6lc01476c.

Xu, K.*, Bonnecaze, R., Balhoff, M.T. “Egalitarianism among Bubbles in Porous Media: an Ostwald Ripening Derived Anti-Coarsening Phenomenon”, Physical Review Letters, Volume 119 pages 264502-1-5 December 2017 DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.119.264502

Sun, Z.*, Espinoza, D.N., Balhoff, M., “Reservoir rock chemo-mechanical alteration quantified by triaxial tests and implications to fracture reactivation”, International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences, Volume 106, pages 250–258, June 2018,

Erincik, M. Qi, P., Balhoff, M.T.*, Pope, G.A., “New Method to Reduce Residual Oil Saturation by Polymer Flooding”, SPE Journal, published online June 2018, DOI: