2020 'A Peer Apart' Honorees Announced

SPE’s A Peer Apart award recognizes those dedicated individuals involved in the review of 100 or more papers for SPE’s peer-reviewed journals.

Peer review is an essential part of scientific publishing and helps to ensure the information contained in a journal is well supported and clearly articulated. Volunteers who commit their time to review papers make substantial contributions to the technical excellence of our industry’s literature. Each year SPE typically has more than 1,400 individual reviewers submitting more than 3,500 reviews for SPE’s various journals. These committed volunteers come from a variety of backgrounds, including academia, service and operator companies, and consultancies from around the world.

Peer review is a demanding and time-consuming task. Over time, the individuals receiving this honor have volunteered hundreds of hours to the Society, making SPE journals a valuable resource to authors and the industry. It is an outstanding accomplishment for those who reach the milestone of reviewing 100 papers.

This year, 19 individuals join this elite group, bringing the total membership of A Peer Apart honorees to 186 dedicated members.

Please join us in congratulating the 2020 honorees.

Mariela Araujo is commercial delivery manager in Shell’s Projects and Technology organization, supporting subsurface technologies and shales. She has been working for Shell for more than 14 years in subsurface integration projects, reservoir management, and technology development. Her expertise extends beyond traditional reservoir engineering areas to include digital technologies, production optimization, and integrated geosciences. Araujo, who holds BS and PhD degrees in physics, started her professional career at PDVSA (Venezuela) and enjoyed working in academia at Universidad Central de Venezuela and Earth Science and Engineering Department at Imperial College in London.

Luis F. Ayala is the William A. Fustos Family Professor in Energy and Mineral Engineering in the John and Willie Leone Family Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering at Pennsylvania State University (Penn State). His research activities focus on the areas of natural gas engineering, multiphase well performance, unconventional reservoir analysis, and advanced computational fluid dynamics modeling. Ayala holds two engineering degrees (both with summa cum laude honors), one in chemical engineering and another in petroleum engineering from Universidad de Oriente (Venezuela), and MS and PhD degrees in petroleum and natural gas engineering from Penn State. He is a Fulbright Scholar and the recipient of numerous awards, including the Fulbright-Colciencias Innovation and Technology Award; the Wilson Award for Outstanding Teaching and the Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award from Penn State; several Outstanding Technical Reviewer Awards and the 2020 Eastern Regional Reservoir Description and Dynamics award from SPE; and a Venezuelan presidential distinction for academic excellence. Ayala is serving as an executive editor for SPE Journal and is the former editor-in-chief of The Way Ahead magazine. He has served on numerous other technical journal boards and SPE committees, including Reservoir Description and Dynamics Advisory Committee, Book Development Committee, and Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) Technical Committees (Reservoir Engineering and Recovery Mechanisms and Flow in Porous Media).
Surendra Bateja is currently working as consultant reservoir engineer (independent) in India. He has retired as general manager (reservoir) from Oil & Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), the national oil company of India, after serving the company for approximately 35 years. He has more than 42 years of experience in the industry and has been an active member of SPE since 1984. Bateja was awarded SPE Distinguished Membership in 2011. He has been associated with SPE’s peer-review activity since 2008 and has served as technical reviewer for Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology, SPE Journal, SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering, SPE Drilling & Completion, and SPE Production & Operations. Bateja received the Outstanding Technical Reviewer Award for SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering in 2009 and for SPE Production & Operations in 2013 and 2018. He has served as an associate editor for SPE Production & Operations since 2015–2016.

Steffen Berg is principal science expert at Shell Global Solutions International BV in the Netherlands. His main research interests range from the fundamental aspects of multiphase flow in porous media to CO2-sequestration aspects of multiphase flow beyond subsurface. Berg holds a master’s degree in materials science from the University of the Saarland and a PhD in physics from the University of Mainz/Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research at Mainz, Germany. After a postdoc at Princeton University, he joined Shell as a research scientist. Berg is also a visiting reader in the Earth Science and Engineering and Chemical Engineering departments at Imperial College London.

Christopher R. Clarkson is a professor and holder of the Ovintiv/Shell Chair in Unconventional Gas and Light Oil Research in the Department of Geoscience and an adjunct professor with the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at the University of Calgary. He leads the industry- and government-sponsored Tight Oil Consortium, which focuses on advanced reservoir characterization and evaluation of unconventional light-oil reservoirs. Clarkson holds a PhD in geological engineering from the University of British Columbia. He is also a certified professional engineer with 11 years of industry experience as a petroleum (reservoir) engineer. 

Eric Delamaide is a reservoir engineer with 30 years of experience who specializes in enhanced oil recovery and heavy oil. He is currently general manager of IFP Technologies (Canada) Inc. in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, as well as manager EOR, Americas for the EOR Alliance. Delamaide holds a degree in chemical engineering from the School of Mines in Saint Etienne and a master’s in petroleum engineering from IFP School, both in France. He joined IFP (Institut Français du Pétrole) in 1990 before moving to Calgary in 1999 to run its Canadian operations. Delamaide has worked in more than 25 countries and has been involved in various capacities in more than 40 EOR projects, including more than 25 polymer floods. He is currently principal engineer and lead EOR expert; in that capacity, he supports and leads EOR projects worldwide.

Delamaide has published more than 60 papers on reservoir engineering and EOR and has served on multiple conference technical committees and workshops, including ATCE, SPE Heavy Oil, Tulsa IOR/EOR, LACPEC, IPTC, SPE EOR at OGWA, MEOS, and ADIPEC. He is currently the chair of the SPE Distinguished Lecturer Committee, an associate editor for SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering, and a technical reviewer for SPE Journal. Delamaide is a professional engineer registered at the Association of Professional Engineer and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) and a member of SPE and EAGE. He has received awards for outstanding services as technical reviewer for SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering every year between 2014 and 2020 and for SPE Journal in 2016, received the 2018 SPE Canadian Region Service Award, and was awarded SPE Distinguished Membership in 2019.

David G. Kersey retired from Saudi Aramco as a senior petroleum engineering consultant in the Upstream Professional Development Center. He previously worked for the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Robertson Research, Reservoirs Inc., Core Laboratories, Schlumberger, and Gulf Indonesia. He has authored or coauthored more than 80 technical papers. Kersey has been chairman of the SPE Java Indonesia and Saudi Arabian sections and is initiating the formation of a Hawaiian SPE section. He is an SPE Distinguished Member, has been recognized three times as an outstanding technical reviewer, and received the Asia Pacific, Middle East, and International SPE Service Awards. Kersey holds a bachelor’s degree in geological sciences from the University of Southern California and a graduate degree in geological sciences from Harvard University.

Saeid Khorsandi is a reservoir engineer with Chevron ETC, having previously held positions at University of Wyoming and Pennsylvania State University (Penn State). He holds a PhD degree in petroleum and natural gas engineering from Penn State, a bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering from Petroleum University of Technology, and an MSc degree in reservoir engineering form Sharif University of Technology. His research interests are enhanced oil recovery, fluid phase behavior, and compositional simulations. Khorsandi has served as an associate editor for SPE Journal since 2017 and as technical reviewer for SPE Journal and SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering since 2012. He is a recipient of the 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 Outstanding Technical Reviewer Award for SPE Journal.

Knut-Andreas Lie holds a PhD and a master's degree in industrial mathematics from NTNU in Trondheim, Norway. He is employed as chief scientist and research manager in SINTEF (Oslo), where he leads a group that develops numerical methods for geoscience applications. The group is particularly known for its open source software, MRST and OPM Flow, which are used all over the world, both in academia and industry. Lie holds a part-time position as professor of mathematics at NTNU, is a SIAM Fellow, and an elected member of the Norwegian Academy of Technological Sciences. Recently, he served 4 years as executive editor of SPE Journal.

Hassan Mahani has more than 15 years of industrial and academic experience. He has worked for approximately 12 years at Shell Technology Centers in the Netherlands as principal investigator, research scientist, and SCAL expert. His research is geared toward fundamental understanding, quantitative evaluation, modeling, and prediction of multiphase flow in porous media with application to IOR/EOR, geo-engineering, and environment. His current activities focus on low-salinity and engineered-water EOR; wettability, interface science, and rock/fluid interaction; pore-scale physics and digital core analysis; and micro- and nanoscale experimentation. He has authored or coauthored more than 60 technical papers published in scientific journals and conference proceedings.

Mahani is an active SPE member and currently serves as associate editor for SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering and Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering. He was recognized multiple times as an SPE Outstanding Technical Reviewer in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019, and as a 2018 Top Reviewer by the American Chemical Society (ACS). He holds a PhD degree in petroleum engineering from Imperial College London and a master’s degree in chemical engineering from Sharif University of Technology.

Ryosuke Okuno is an associate professor in the Hildebrand Department of Petroleum & Geosystems Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. Before joining the faculty of his current department, he served as an assistant professor of petroleum engineering in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at the University of Alberta from 2010 to 2015. Okuno has 7 years of industrial experience as a reservoir engineer, and is a registered professional engineer in Alberta, Canada. His research and teaching interests include enhanced oil recovery, thermal oil recovery, unconventional oil and gas, numerical reservoir simulation, thermodynamics, multiphase behavior, and applied mathematics. Okuno is a recipient of the 2012 SPE Petroleum Engineering Junior Faculty Research Initiation Award and the 2019 SPE Regional Reservoir Description and Dynamics Award (Southwestern Region). He currently serves as an associate editor for SPE Journal and holds the Pioneer Corporation Faculty Fellowship in Petroleum Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. Okuno holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in geosystem engineering from the University of Tokyo and a PhD degree in petroleum engineering from The University of Texas at Austin.  

Ray (Zhenhua) Rui, a research scientist in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, holds a PhD degree in energy and mineral engineering, an MS degree in petroleum engineering, an MBA from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and an MS degree in petroleum geophysics from China University of Petroleum-Beijing, China. His research interests include unconventional and conventional resource assessment and development, reservoir engineering, techno-economic analysis, energy project sustainable development, infrastructure and transportation, and energy data analytics. Rui serves or has served as an SPE PF&C advisory committee member, SPE International PF&C award committee chair, Hoover Medal Board Member, SPE ATCE specialty coordinator and subcommittee chair, SPE National Capital Section program chairperson, and ABET program evaluator in petroleum engineering. He also served as a member of the United Nations Expert Group on Resource Management and MIT Mine, Oil and Gas Club advisor. Rui is a cofounder and organization committee chair of MIT A+B organization. He also serves as an associate editor for SPE Production & Operations and Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering. Rui has published more than 70 journal and conference papers in the energy field, and has received many awards, including SPE Distinguished Member, SPE Regional Technical Award, and Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement.

Jesús M. Salazar holds PhD and MS degrees in petroleum engineering from The University of Texas at Austin and a BS degree in physics with honors from Universidad Central de Venezuela. Since late 2018, he has worked as senior petrophysicist for Marathon Oil in Houston, looking for new opportunities within the US resource plays, first in the Growth South team and currently in the Technology Organization. Previously, Salazar worked 11 years with ConocoPhillips in Houston, Australia, and Canada in technology and exploration assignments developing and deploying new workflows for US and international reservoir characterization projects. Prior to joining ConocoPhillips, he worked 5 years for the Center for Petroleum Engineering at The University of Texas Austin as a research assistant and 5 years for PDVSA, Venezuela, as a petrophysicist and reservoir development engineer. Salazar also worked for Occidental Oil and Gas as a summer intern, in Bakersfield, California, and Houston. He served as SPWLA President for 2019–2020; previously, he had been the president, vice president, and secretary of the Houston Chapter of SPWLA, and the VP Technology and Technical Chairman for the 2018 SPWLA Symposium held in London, UK. Salazar is a former associate editor for case studies in Petrophysics (SPWLA), former co-executive editor for SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering, and currently serves as an associate editor for SPE Journal. He enjoys traveling (39 countries pre-COVID), running, reading, streaming movies and series, and especially spending time with his wife and two kids.

Javier Sanchez Reyes is a senior research engineer currently managing the Americas Client Support Laboratory for Schlumberger Reservoir Performance. Since he joined Schlumberger in 2003, Reyes has been involved in technical and support operations positions for well hydraulic fracturing, acidizing, water control, and other aspects of well stimulation. He has authored or coauthored 12 refereed publications. Reyes is a Fulbright scholar. He holds a BS degree in chemical engineering from Monterrey Institute of Technology in Mexico, and an MS degree from Texas A&M University and a PhD from Cornell University, both in chemical engineering. Reyes has been a member of different SPE committees such as the 2016 and 2018 SPE ATCE, where he also served as session chair for the Production Operations track. He has been serving SPE as a technical reviewer for SPE Production & Operations, SPE Drilling & Completion, Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology, and SPE Journal, and has been an associate editor for SPE Production & Operations since 2012.

Josephina Schembre-McCabe is the R&D specialist and lead in digital rock technology at the Chevron Technical Center. Her current research interests include multiphase flow in porous media, digital rock technology applications, and modeling of recovery mechanisms. She holds a PhD degree in petroleum engineering from Stanford University.

Jonathan Wylde serves as global head of innovation at Clariant Oil and Mining Services and is based in Houston, where he is responsible for global application development and innovation. Since joining Clariant in 2002 as a senior development chemist, Wylde has successfully contributed to innovation and development advancement across multiple Clariant Oil and Mining Services channels, including technical, operational, sales, and business development.

As an honorary associate professor at Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK, Wylde has authored more than 175 papers and patents. He has served on the SPE committees for the International Scale Conference and Oilfield Chemical Conference and is now actively serving as an associate editor for SPE Production & Operations and as a technical reviewer for JPT, SPE Production & Operations, and SPE Journal.

Turhan Yildiz is principal reservoir engineering advisor for Red Rocks Engineering in Littleton, Colorado. He has 30 years of experience in reservoir/production engineering; 13 years in the industry and 17 years in academic institutions. Currently, he focuses on the interpretation of the closed-chamber tests in shale-gas reservoirs, the rate transient analysis for discrete fractured shale formations, interpretation of pressure-decay tests run on shale cuttings and plugs, and measurement of relative permeabilities in unconventional rocks. Yildiz holds a BS degree from Istanbul Technical University and MS and PhD degrees from Louisiana State University. He has served on the SPE Editorial Committee and the SPE Reservoir Descriptions and Dynamics Advisory Committee.

Fengshou Zhang is currently a professor in the Department of Geotechnical Engineering at Tongji University, Shanghai, China. He holds a PhD degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology and worked for a few years in Itasca as a geomechanics engineer providing consulting services to the energy industry before joining Tongji University. His research interests focus on the multiscale and multiphysics coupling processes in the deep underground, with applications to unconventional hydraulic fracturing, fault slipping and stability, geothermal, microseismicity monitoring, deep mining, and granular mechanics.

Andrew Zheng holds a PhD in aeronautics and astronautics from Purdue University, and BS and MS degrees in engineering mechanics from Tsinghua University. He is currently an SETC advisor developing digital technologies for improving rig performance at Schlumberger. Zheng has more than 20 years’ oilfield experience in modeling and simulation of conveyance systems, downhole tool design, surface equipment design, and acquisition and control systems. He is an expert in coiled-tubing technologies, rig automation, and surface and downhole integration of drilling systems. Zheng was the chairman of ICoTA USA (2016–2017), has served in various industry standard committees (API, ICoTA, and IADC) over the years, and is currently an associate editor for SPE Drilling & Completion.


2020 'A Peer Apart' Honorees Announced

16 November 2020



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