Contact Us

Department of Geology and Geophysics
1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie, WY 82071-2000
Phone: (307) 766-4141
Fax: (307) 766-6679

Geology & Geophysics Logo

Find us on Facebook (Link opens a new window) Find us on Twitter (Link opens a new window)

Dr. Ye Zhang



Subsurface Hydrology

Office Phone: (307) 223-2292

Office Room No: GE 220


➤ Personal Website


Hydrogeology, PhD, Indiana University, 2005
Hydrogeology, MS, University of Minnesota, 2004
Hydrogeology, BS, Nanjing University (PR China), 1998



Research Projects

  • Year (2017-2020) Collaborative Research: A New Inverse Theory for Joint Parameter And BoundaryConditions Estimation to Improve Characterization of Deep Formations and Leakage Monitoring, NSF, EAR- 1702078,  PIs: Tissa Illangasekare, Ye Zhang; co-PI: Andrew Trautz.

  • Year (2017-2019) CO2 Storage Modeling at the Kevin Dome pilot injection site, Montana, DOE Big Sky Carbon Sequestration Partnership, PI: Phil Stauffer; co-PI: Ye Zhang.

  • Year (2017-2019) PFLOTRAN Web application, DOE Office of Science (SBIR/STTR), PI: Zhou, Haiyan; co-PIs: Satish Karra, Roelef Versteeg, Ye Zhang.

  • Year (2018-2021) Integrated Modeling and Assessment of CO2 EOR in Ordos Basin, China, US-China Clean Energy Research Center,  Subcontractor.

Details on current research can be found on my Personal Website where publications (in pdf) can be downloaded.

Details on current or future course offerings (i.e., syllabi) can be
found on my Personal Website, under "Teaching".

Recent Publications

Links to Publications in PDF format

§ Student co-author

Danchen Li, Soheil Saraji, Zunsheng Jiao, Ye Zhang (2020) CO2 injection strategies for enhanced oil recovery and geological sequestration in a tight reservoir: an experimental study, Fuel, 284,119013. 

Ye Zhang, Y. Z. Ma, E Gomez (2020) Comment on “Correlation analysis of element contents and mechanical characteristics of shale reservoirs” by Liu et al. (2018), Marine &  Petroleum Geology, 116, 103865. 

Jianying Jiao†, Ye Zhang, Liqiang Wang (2019) A new inverse method for contaminant source identification under unknown solute transport boundary conditions, Journal of Hydrology, Vol. 577, 123911. 

Zee Ma, Ye Zhang (2019) Comment on “Correlation analysis of element contents and mechanical characteristics of shale reservoirs” by Liu et al. (2018), Marine & Petroleum Geology, in press.

Shuangpo Ren§, Guangqing Yao, Ye Zhang (2019) High-resolution geostatistical modeling of an intensively drilled heavy oil reservoir, the BQ 10 Block, Biyang Sag, Nanxiang Basin, China, Marine & Petroleum Geology, Vol. 104, p. 404-422.

Wei Wang, Po Chen, Ian Keifer, Ken Dueker, En-Jui Lee, Dawei Mu, Jianying Jiao†, Ye Zhang, Bradley Carr (2019) Weathering front under a granite ridge revealed through  full-3D seismic ambient-noise tomography, Earth & Planetary Science Letters, Vol. 509, p. 66-77.

Shengli Li, Ye Zhang, Z. Zee Y. Ma (2018) Comment on “A comparative study of reservoir modeling techniques and their impact on predicted performance of fluvial-dominated deltaic reservoirs”, AAPG Bulletin, Vol. 102, No. 8, p. 1659-1663.

Dan Zhou§, Ye Zhang, Guillaume Gianni, Peter Lichtner, Irina Engelhardt (2018) Numerical modeling of stream-aquifer interaction: quantifying the impact of transient sreambed permeability and aquifer heterogeneity, Hydrological Processes, in press,

Shuangpo Ren§, Andrew Parsekian, Ye Zhang, Brad Carr (2018) Hydraulic conductivity calibration of logging NMR in a granite aquifer, Laramie Range, Wyoming, Groundwater, in press, doi: 10.1111/gwat.12798.

Zhenxue Dai, Ye Zhang, Jeffrey M. Bielicki, Mohammad Amooie, Mingkan Zhang§, Changbing Yang, Youqin Zou, William Ampomah, Ting Xiao, Wei Jia, Richard Middleton, Wen Zhang, Youhong Sun, Joachim Moortgat, Mohamad Soltanian, Philip Stauffer (2018) Heterogeneity-assisted carbon dioxide storage in marine sediments, Applied Energy, Vol. 225, p. 876-883.

Shuangpo Ren§, Samuel Gragg§, Ye Zhang, Brad Carr (2018) Borehole characterization of hydraulic properties and groundwater flow in a crystalline fractured aquifer of a headwater mountain watershed, Laramie Range, Wyoming, Journal of Hydrology, Vol. 403, p. 66-82.


(1) Introduction to Geostatistics (GEOL 5446), Fall 2009, GEOL 5446 syllabus PDF.
Geostatistics course notes (Chp1 only)

(2) Geohydrology (GEOL 4444/5444), Spring 2009, GEOL 4444/5444 syllabus PDF.
Geohydrology course notes PDF (Chp1 only)

(3) Groundwater Flow and Solute Transport Modeling (GEOL 5200), Fall 2008, GEOL 5200 syllabus PDF. Students can sign up in either S/U or A/F grading.
Modeling course notes PDF (Chp1 & Chp2 only)

(4) Classical Papers in Hydrogeology (GEOL 5210), Fall 2008, GEOL 5210 syllabus PDF.

Current Graduate Students

  • Minh Nguyen           PhD Candidate

  • Fangyu Gao             PhD Candidate

  • Jianying Jiao            PhD candidate

  • Nikki Li                    PhD candidate

  • Chau Minh Duc Ha     MS candidate

  • Shuangpo Ren          visiting PhD candidate

  • Dan Zhou                visiting PhD candidate

Research Statement

(1) Parameter Estimation

Permeability heterogeneity is the single most salient feature of sedimentary aquifers. It exerts a dominant control on subsurface fluid flow and solute transport, while the lack of its representation in hydrogeological models accounts for much uncertainty in model predictions. In lieu of heterogeneity, models adopt effective parameters to represent the bulk flow/transport behaviors arising out of the unresolved heterogeneity. To address the issues related to "the heterogeneity problem", my research focuses on (a) innovative data; (b) new upscaling method; (c) high performance computing; (d) novel statistical analysis technique.

(2) Regional Hydrogeology

In the hydrocarbon-rich intermontane basins of the Rocky Mountain region, little is understood of the interplay of groundwater flow, salinization, and petroleum generation/migration. At the basin scale, groundwater flow is coupled to heat transfer and salinity transport (variable-density flow). The data-rich Uinta Basin in Utah provides a natural laboratory to understand a variety of subsurface phenomena. My research focuses on (a) realistic 3D model building; (b) regional 3D mapping of water and gas chemistry; (c) geostatistical modeling (CoKriging) to predict gas concentration/migration pathways; (d) based on field sampling, theoretical analysis on fluids co-migration via multiphase flow modeling.

(3) Mountain Hydrology

Securing sustainable water supply is critical to the semiarid western U.S. In Wyoming, alpine watersheds receive approximately 60% of annual precipitation and are sources for downstream water supplies. Groundwater in mountains, however, is poorly known due to lack of characterization and monitoring data. We were funded by NSF EPSCoR and Wyoming Water Development Commission to drill, test, monitor, and characterize an interconnected hydrological system centered at the Laramie Range, Wyoming, consisting of fractured granite and metamorphic rocks: (1) Casper aquifer in Laramie receiving runoff from west side of the Range; (2) Blair Wallis fractured rock research well field in the Range; (3) Casper aquifer in Cheyenne receiving runoff from eastern Range. At each site, we monitor water level and temperature from streams to bedrock wells and work on joint analysis of hydrological and geophysical measurements to ''look into the subsurface'' over a range of scales. Our aim is to improve water balance estimation for both headwater watershed and downstream basins along the mountain front recharge area.

Teaching Statement

My teaching approach is one of thorough preparation, student participation, and individual mentoring. I use both mathematical models and hands-on exercises to clearly illucidate the concepts, theories and their applications. Though mathematical rigor in developing the models is an integral part of the instruction, practical applications and appropriate use of models are also emphasized. Thus, most of the exercises, howework and projects involve solving practical hydrogeological problems either by hand or by computers (more advanced classes only). I emphasize to the students the importance of being professional at this early stage of their career, by encouraging critical thinking, logical and clear writing, and quantitative rigor. In general, I assist students to “learn how to learn” and solve problems independently. For complex projects, students are sometimes encouraged to work in groups and to seek solutions in a collaborative environment, as team work is key to success in many real-world situations.

Contact Us

Department of Geology and Geophysics
1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie, WY 82071-2000
Phone: (307) 766-4141
Fax: (307) 766-6679

Geology & Geophysics Logo

Find us on Facebook (Link opens a new window) Find us on Twitter (Link opens a new window)