Dr Claudia Cherubini

Honorary Lecturer

School of Civil Engineering
Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology

Overview

She joined UQ in September 2015 as a Lecturer of Water Engineering. Her research focuses on hydrogeology topics applied to different sectors of Environmental Engineering, with her primary interest being the hydrogeological and geostatistical modelling of heterogeneous aquifers for the purpose of improved groundwater management. By means of the use of deterministic and stochastic methods, Cherubini is able to characterize the spatial distribution of coastal aquifer’s properties and to model environmental and anthropogenic variables by using advanced geo-statistical techniques. In this way, one can reproduce detailed geological reconstructions that support numerical models. Groundwater flow and transport modelling allow simulations suitable for groundwater management by master plans, remediation interventions at polluted sites and a correct exploitation of groundwater in coastal areas. The characterization and the description of phenomena that involve fractured aquifers, especially if considered in relationship with water resource exploitation, is an important issue because fractured aquifers serve as the primary source of drinking water for many areas of the world. Current developments of C. Cherubini researches are the study and characterization of physical processes governing infiltration in the fractured vadose zone and heat transport in fractured aquifers to understand and compare fluid movement and thermal behaviour in such media. The study is aimed at investigating the exploitation of low enthalpy geothermal energy that can be obtained with the aid of ground-source heat pump system from the soil, rock and groundwater. Prior to joining the University of Queensland, she was associate professor in hydrogeology at Institute Polytechnique LaSalle Beauvais (France) (2012-2015), held postdoctoral research positions at CNR and at the Polytechnic University of Bari, and was visiting researcher at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (USA) and United States Geological Survey Menlo Park (USA). In 2011 she was invited Lecturer in MSc Module “Mineral Resource Assessment” at University of Exeter- Camborne School of Mines (UK).

Research Interests

  • Application of advanced (multivariate, not stationary, not parametric) geostatistical techniques for the modeling of environmental variables and of pollution phenomena.
  • Study of Contaminated Soils and Groundwater and Remediation Methodologies especially for fractured aquifers
  • Vulnerability of Aquifers
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Environmental Sustainability (climatic changes, desertification)
  • Modeling applied to water resources management for groundwater protection with specific approaches for coastal fractured aquifers
  • Unsaturated fracture flow
  • Fluid flow and contaminant transport in porous and fractured media

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Politecnico di Bari

Publications

View all Publications

Available Projects

  • The objective of this work is to develop a computational tool for the study of unsaturated flow in single synthetic fractures. Specifically, the project regards the setting up of an apparatus to determine a mathematical model to describe unsaturated flow in a single synthetic fracture as a function of aperture, inclination, roughness etc. A number of field transport experiments have been performed in unsaturated fractured rocks, but the interpretation of field measurements is often problematic because detailed characterization of the subsurface is difficult. Data from laboratory experiments are generally easier to interpret than data from the field since conditions are controlled and the system is easier to characterize. In addition, laboratory experiments integrate field studies by furthering the understanding of smaller scale mechanisms which may affect processes at a larger scale. Laboratory studies of fluid flow and solute transport in unsaturated fractures have been very limited. In particular, very few studies exist on the analysis of the influence of fracture parameters on the infiltration in unsaturated flow conditions. This PhD project will consist of 2 Parts: Part 1 focuses on setting up of the apparatus. Part 2 will consist in implementing the findings of Part1 in a fluid flow model that predicts the experimental data

View all Available Projects

Publications

Book Chapter

  • Cherubini C. (2010). A geostatistically based probabilistic risk assessment approach. In Pedro Nuno San-Banto Furtado (Ed.), Evolving Application Domains of Data Warehousing and Mining: Trends and Solutions (pp. 277-303) Hershey, PA United States: Information Science Reference. doi:10.4018/978-1-60566-816-1.ch013

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Cherubini, C., Giasi, C. I. and Pastore, N. (2009). Application of modeling for optimal localization of environmental monitoring sensors. In: 3rd International Workshop on Advances in Sensors and Interfaces, IWASI 2009. 3rd International Workshop on Advances in Sensors and Interfaces, IWASI 2009, Trani, Italy, (222-227). 25-26 June 2009. doi:10.1109/IWASI.2009.5184800

  • Cherubini, Claudia, Giasi, Concetta I., Musci, Fausta and Pastore, Nicola (2009). Application of truncated plurigaussian method for the reactive transport modeling of a contaminated aquifer. In: Proceedings of the 4Th Iasme/wseas International Conference On Water Resources, Hydraulics and Hydrology (WHH'09). 4th IASME/WSEAS International Conference on Water Resources, Hydraulics and Hydrology, Cambridge, England, (119-124). 24-26 February 2009.

  • Cherubini, C., Giasi, C.,I. and Pastore, N. (2009). Characterization of a coastal fractured karstic aquifer by means of sequential indicator simulation algorithm. In: Siavash H. Sohrab, Haris J. Catrakis and Nikolai Kobasko, Recent advances in heat transfer, thermal engineering and environment : proceedings of the 7th IASEME/WSEAS International Conference on Heat transfer, Thermal Engineering and Environment (HTE '09). 7th IASME / WSEAS International Conference on Heat Transfer, Thermal Engineering and Environment, HTE '09, Moscow, Russia, (247-252). 20-22 August 2009.

  • Cherubini, Claudia, Giasi, Concetta I., Musci, Fausta and Pastore, Nicola (2009). Nested SIS algorithm for a stochastic geolithologic characterization of heterogeneous aquifer. In: Proceedings of the 4Th Iasme/wseas International Conference On Water Resources, Hydraulics and Hydrology (WHH'09). 4th IASME/WSEAS International Conference on Water Resources, Hydraulics and Hydrology, Cambridge, England, (201-206). 24-26 February 2009.

  • Cherubini, Claudia and Francani, Vincenzo (2007). A hydrodynamic model of a contaminated fractured aquifer. In: Hte'07: Proceedings of the 5Th Iasme / Wseas International Conference On Heat Transfer, Thermal Engineering and Environment. 5th IASME/WSEAS International Conference on Heat Transfer, Thermal Engineering and Environment, Vouliagmeni Greece, (114-121). Aug 25, 2007-Aug 27, 2008.

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

Dr Claudia Cherubini is not currently available to take on new students.

  • The objective of this work is to develop a computational tool for the study of unsaturated flow in single synthetic fractures. Specifically, the project regards the setting up of an apparatus to determine a mathematical model to describe unsaturated flow in a single synthetic fracture as a function of aperture, inclination, roughness etc. A number of field transport experiments have been performed in unsaturated fractured rocks, but the interpretation of field measurements is often problematic because detailed characterization of the subsurface is difficult. Data from laboratory experiments are generally easier to interpret than data from the field since conditions are controlled and the system is easier to characterize. In addition, laboratory experiments integrate field studies by furthering the understanding of smaller scale mechanisms which may affect processes at a larger scale. Laboratory studies of fluid flow and solute transport in unsaturated fractures have been very limited. In particular, very few studies exist on the analysis of the influence of fracture parameters on the infiltration in unsaturated flow conditions. This PhD project will consist of 2 Parts: Part 1 focuses on setting up of the apparatus. Part 2 will consist in implementing the findings of Part1 in a fluid flow model that predicts the experimental data