Fluids and Porous Materials

The rich pallet of interactions of fluids and porous media are studied from nano- to macroscale and from very short to long time scales.

We focus on:

  • fluid (gas and/or liquid) transport at different pore scales and its coupling to heat transport.
  • phase change between liquid and gas at molecular, pore and macro- scales, including heat of sorption.
  • coupled mechanical-sorption hysteresis behavior, including swelling–shrinkage.
  • surface phenomena such as droplet impact on porous substrates, film forming and run-off.

Applied research covers applications such as convective drying, hygrothermal and durability behavior of building components, leaching of biocides, thermal underlayer for chips, sorption heat pumps, food cold chain, etc.

Methods and Approach

Our scientific approach is based on the coupling of advanced experimental and computational methods.

Advanced imaging using neutron, X-ray and ESEM, documents the fluid–porous interactions in the material at different scales, providing essential insights for understanding of the phenomena at play.

Theoretical and computational modeling, such as MD, LBM, CFD and FEM, provides the capability to determine material properties from experiments using inverse identification, to design optimal experiments and to explore new pathways for material development and technology innovation.