Current Research Projects

Water resource quantification in nothern Kenya

The objective this research project is to improve the understanding of two Kenyan aquifers (Merti and Kakuma) in a semi-arid context and to evaluate its sustainability. These aquifers are the only drinking water resource for two refugee camps of respectively 450’000 and 100’000 refugees. This research uses numerical modelling based on field data and satellite images analysis.

Funded by Swiss Confederation

Collaborations: Prof Pierre Perrochet, Dr. Ellen Milnes, Prof Philip Brunner, Lucien Blandenier (PhD Student)

In collaboration with: The UN refugee Agency UNHCR, the Swiss agency for development and cooperation SDC

Analysis of recycling processes

Mathematical and numerical strategies are designed to efficiently address critical issues such as solute recycling in irrigated areas, leading to enhanced aquifer salinisation, or heat recycling in geothermal well doublets, leading to decaying yield and enhanced thermal perturbations. The developed modeling procedures allow for direct simulation of the long-term extent of solute or thermal plumes, very often used as legal criterion for the implementation of such systems.

- optimization of irrigation of coffee crops

Fieldwork: Vietnam

Collaborators: Prof Pierre Perrochet, Dr Ellen Milnes

In collaboration with: EDE Consulting, Nestlé, SDC

start: 2014

Karstic hydrodynamics

Research site: Grotte de Milandre (Jura, Switzerland)

Collaborators: Prof Pierre Perrochet, Cécile Vuilleumier (PhD Student)

In collaboration with the Swiss institute for speleology and karst studies - ISSKA (Dr Pierre-Yves Jeannin)

start 2013

Parametric uncertainty analysis by experimental design and surface response methods

The purpose of this research is to test out the relevance of experimental design schemes when large numbers of hydrodynamic and hydrodispersive parameters are considered. The surface response methodology commonly used in petroleum engineering is used to analyse the uncertainties associated to large scale groundwater flow and transport models.

The Response Surface Methodology consists of replacing the numerical model by a mathematical equation that approximates the behavior of the processes we simulate. The mathematical approximation can then be used to produce statistical assessment on the side effects of parameters uncertainty on some particular outcome of interest.

Collaborators : Prof Pierre Perrochet, Dr Jaouher Kerrou, Gregory Deman (PhD Student)

In collaboration with French national radioactive waste management agency ANDRA

Groundwater dynamics in the Paris Basin

Key hydrogeological issues related to the storage of radioactive wastes in multilayered system are analysed. This project includes specific features such as high resolution 3D geological modelling, probabilistic modelling of discrete fracture networks, simulation of 3D variably-saturated flows and transport processes at regional and local scales, inverse modelling, groundwater age and lifetime expectancy distributions.

Collaborators: Prof Pierre Perrochet, Dr Jaouher Kerrou

In Collaboration with and funded by ANDRA