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Texas A&M at Qatar’s Alyafei publishes new textbook

Published Nov 09, 2019

TAMUQ-2019-petroleum-engineering-Alyafei-textbookDr. Nayef Alyafei, assistant professor of petroleum engineering at Texas A&M University at Qatar, has published a new textbook with Hamad Bin Khalifa University Press on the properties of rocks in petroleum reservoirs, titled Fundamentals of Reservoir Rock Properties.

Alyafei said he wrote the textbook after his first semester teaching the reservoir petrophysics course for Texas A&M at Qatar petroleum engineering students in fall 2017. This course is fundamental and at the heart of the petroleum engineering curriculum, Alyafei said. His students in that class said they enjoyed their class notes and found them more useful than the textbook, so they suggested he write his own textbook.

“It was a life goal for me to write a textbook,” he said. “I wrote it for my students but I also wanted to leave a legacy for petroleum engineering students, something that will stand out with my name on it. As the first Qatari to join the faculty at Texas A&M at Qatar, I need to show young Qataris that I am able to do these things and of course they can too, so hopefully I can inspire them to want to achieve their own dreams as well.”

This book covers the essential concepts of rock properties aiding students, petroleum geoscientists, and engineers to understand petroleum reservoirs. The project took about two years to complete and in spring 2019, he used a test version in the course. He then incorporated feedback from his students to complete the book, which is now a part of HBKU Press’s catalog of books and is available in bookstores across Qatar.

“HBKU Press’s central focus is to support and highlight Qatari and regional academics and provide them with a global platform on which to share their ideas and research,” explains Dalia Heiba, publishing specialist at HBKU Press. “Dr. Alyafei’s book is an important contribution to the academic landscape both regionally and internationally and is exemplary of the high standard of quality academic books that HBKU Press is committed to publishing.” 

Alyafei is a Class of 2009 petroleum engineering graduate of Texas A&M at Qatar. He went on to earn his Ph.D. at Imperial College London before joining the faculty of his alma mater. His Ph.D. advisor, Martin Blunt, contributed a review of the book, which is printed on the back cover. Blunt praises Alyafei’s clear presentation of information and excellent illustrations, and said the book is ideal for undergraduate or post-graduate studies in petroleum engineering, hydrology or related disciplines.

“The book provides a much-needed reference on petrophysics, which is also valuable for researchers and professionals working in the oil industry,” Blunt said. “It is also of interest to the growing body of students, researchers, scientists and engineers working on flow in porous media with a variety of applications from hydrocarbon recovery to carbon dioxide storage. I will certainly recommend this work to my own students and colleagues, and use it in my teaching.”

Dr. César Octavio Malavé, dean of Texas A&M at Qatar, said that Alyafei’s textbook is just one example of how the branch campus is sharing knowledge worldwide based on the expertise and experience of its faculty, as well as contributing to building human capacity in Qatar by developing a new generation of engineering leaders.

“Dr. Alyafei is one of our most popular and enthusiastic teachers,” Malavé said, “which is evident by the recognition he has earned as our 2018 Alumnus of the Year — given largely due to his outstanding efforts in teaching and mentoring — and from Texas A&M University’s Association of Former Students, which awarded him the Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching this fall. He is driven to enrich his students and to inspire them to reach new heights, even going so far as to write a textbook at their encouragement. We are proud of him and all that he has accomplished in such a short time.”