Professor Dr. Ian Gates

Proton Technologies, Research Visionary


Ian Gates joined the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at the University of Calgary in 2004 after working a total of 7 years in industry. He is a registered professional engineer (P.Eng.) in the province of Alberta and has been a consultant for many small and large energy companies both in Canada and internationally.

Dr. Gates’ current research interests are in heavy oil and oil sands recovery process design and optimization, thermal (SAGD and CSS) and thermal-solvent (ES-SAGD, SA-CSS) oil recovery processes, cold production of heavy oil with sand (CHOPS) and follow-up process design, reservoir engineering and simulation, reservoir process optimization, reactive reservoir processes and simulation, heat and mass transfer, fluid mechanics, biofilm evolution in porous media, and bioreactor design (think of the reservoir as a bioreactor).

His previous work includes: design of thermal and thermal-solvent recovery processes, thermal and compositional reservoir simulation, automated optimization of recovery processes, analysis of steam and steam-solvent transport in depletion chambers in oil sands processes, thermal-solvent gravity drainage oil recovery processes (simulation and physical model experiments), steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD), solvent-enhanced steam-assisted gravity drainage (ES-SAGD), cyclic steam stimulation (CSS), optimization of steam scheduling, genetic algorithms, simulated annealing, modeling and experimentation of coating flows, analysis of free surface flows by using the Galerkin/finite element method, linear stability analysis of free surface flow and coating flow.


Department Head & Professor, Petroleum & Chemical Engineering
Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary B.Sc. with Distinction, Chemical Engineering, University of Calgary
M.A.Sc. Chemical Engineering, University of British Columbia
Ph.D. Chemical Engineering (Minor in Mathematics), University of Minnesota