Jamal Chaouki

Jamal Chaouki

Département de génie chimique
École Polytechnique de Montréal

Chair title

NSERC/Total Industrial Research Chair in Hydrodynamic Modelling of Multiphase Processes at Extreme Conditions

Chair program

Industrial Research Chairs program


Senior Chairholder since 2011

Related Chair

Louis Fradette


Multiphase flows are widely used for the production of energy fuels, chemicals and biotechnological products in petroleum extraction and even in environmental engineering. Feedstocks are changing rapidly due to the shortage of conventional resources. New fuel sources and blends of feedstocks like biomass, coal and petcoke are typical for many current and future industrial applications. Their intrinsic variability combined with stringent environmental constraints makes the processes much more difficult to design and operate. Furthermore, the use of high temperature and/or high pressure during conversion and handling of high viscosity materials and/or viscosity ratios results in extreme processing conditions for which the multiphase process hydrodynamics are completely unknown.

The management and conservation of natural resources are the fundamental challenges to implementing green processes and sustainable development. Economic growth in the 21st century will require safe and sustainable resources to support the increasing needs of society. It is vital to find original solutions and technologies that have the potential to use much more complex raw materials, including non-renewable resources (heavy petroleum, coal and minerals) as well as renewable resources. For example, Canada has approximately 36.4 Mha of crop land; after grain harvesting, most crop residues are left on the field. The surplus straw available for bio-fuel production from the prairies after livestock feeding, bedding, insulation and mulching amounts to over 15 Mt. It is also imperative to address the environmental issues that have resulted from the rapid growth of the world population and the corresponding increase in the use of renewable and non-renewable resources. This is a highly strategic issue because these technologies are up-stream of any development.

The objective of the proposed research program is to model multiphase process hydrodynamics under extreme conditions applicable to a broad range of technologies and processes, and more specifically, develop phenomenological hydrodynamic models for multiphase processes involved in energy production and petrochemicals. Specific objectives are to contribute to the fundamental understanding of multiphase reactors and develop new and improved processes and to train highly qualified specialists in the development and implementation of these new technologies for the benefit of Canada.

The two main integrated research themes proposed by Prof. Chaouki are:

  • Turbulent Fluidized Beds: The objectives of this research theme are to develop new models based on experimental results to accurately describe the hydrodynamics of the TFB at high temperatures and high pressures, to circumscribe the effects of interparticle forces through the Discrete Element Method (DEM), and to investigate jet effects in TFBs.
  • Bubble and Slurry Bubble Column Reactors: The objectives of this research theme are to generate empirical data on the performance of slurry bubble column reactors under typical industrial operational conditions such as high temperature, high pressure, high superficial velocities and high solid concentration, to study the influence of the gas distributor design, the presence of internals as well as reactor geometry and dimensions on the behaviour of these systems, and to study the influence of the physical properties of solids, liquids and gases, particularly liquid and solid/liquid phase rheology on the operation of these reactors. Based on the above experimental results, the aim is to develop new models capable of accurately describing the hydrodynamics in the slurry bubble column and thus improve the design and scale-up operations by accurately taking into account all the process variables.

TOTAL especially supports this Chair because it combines high-level theoretical research, in domains of interest to the TOTAL Group, by specifying that it is the complete process that is analyzed and not only the CFD, and numerous diverse experimental projects at various scales.


  • Total E&P Canada Ltd.
  • Total American Services Inc.
  • Total SA, France

Contact information

Département de génie chimique
École Polytechnique de Montréal
2900 boulevard Édouard-Montpetit
2500 chemin de Polytechnique
Montréal, Québec
H3T 1J4

Tel.: 514-340-4711, ext. 4034
Fax: 514-340-4105


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