Imago Project

Rock characterization in petroleum reservoir through thin sheet images.


Imago is an integrated tool for image analysis, which combines a set of functionality that allows for:

  • micro-structural characterization of porous and metallic materials like synthetics, ceramics and rocks from 2D images of microscopy;
  • 3D stochastic modeling of microstructure, in order to preserve geometrical parameters measured in 2D images;
  • physical processes simulation in the 3D structure and the measuring of macroscopic properties, such as: an absolute permeability, relative permeability and thermal conductivity.


There is a central paradigm behind this technological application: macroscopic physical properties from a material datum are consequence of its microstructure. Moreover, in the case of manufactured materials like catalysts’ porous elements, the microstructure is determined by the manufacturing process, so it is the connection between the manufacturing process and the resultant material properties.

By knowing the relation between manufacturing-microstructure-property we can manipulate the manufacturing process in order to obtain a material with specific properties. In this way, the micro-structural characterization and physical processes simulation in 3D models show a wide spectrum of applications, not only on natural porous materials like rocks, but also on synthesized porous materials like catalysts.


There is a vast field of applications for Imago, involving the metal-mechanic industry, as well as the oil and gas industry. We can mention:

  • Grain size distribution determination, phase fraction, number of inclusions, and other micro-structural properties of metallic materials for quality control;
  • Determination of ground transport properties, to be used in simulation models of contaminants migration on the ground, in the occasion of an oil leakage/spill;
  • Physical properties characterization of porous elements used in the pressure reduction valves of gas pipelines.