Colorado school of mines petroleum engineering department
Interim Department Head and Professor
Dr. William Fleckenstein
Dear Mines Community:
Dr. William Fleckenstein has been appointed to the position of Interim Department Head of the Petroleum Engineering Department, effective December 1, 2012. Dr. Fleckenstein has a long history with the Colorado School of Mines; he received his Bachelors, Masters and Ph.D., all in Petroleum Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines. Dr. Fleckenstein has 25 years experience in the petroleum industry, and is a registered professional engineer, has served the Petroleum Department as an Adjunct Professor since 2000, and has developed patent pending multi-stage fracturing technology at Mines that is the foundation of the CSM startup company, FracOptimal LLC. This is the first CSM startup company in PE's history. Additionally Dr. Fleckenstein was awarded as a Co-PI, in partnership with CU and seven other organizations, a five year NSF Sustainability Research Network, or SRN agreement to study the sustainability of natural gas development. Dr. Fleckenstein is committed to CSM and the Petroleum Engineering Department's success, particularly in taking advantage of the opportunities afforded by the near-revolution of shale resource development, both nationally and internationally.
The Big Move and Changes...
Dr. Ramona M. Graves
Dean Ramona M. Graves (left)
Many of you will notice that the newsletter is arriving a bit later than usual. As you read through the faculty, staff, and student letters, it will become evident that the lateness is not due to lack of enthusiasm or commitment but rather the lateness is due to The Big Move and Changes!
The Petroleum Engineering Department is now in Marquez Hall; our new Leeds Certified, beautiful, dazzling, magnificent, exquisite, stunning, elegant, gorgeous…(the thesaurus just doesn’t have enough words) home! The centerfold photos of the Grand Opening held on September 28 will give you some idea of the excitement. This was the Big Move. Alderson Hall had been our home since 1952 with a remodel and addition in 1992. Throughout the summer the parking lot behind Alderson was filled with dumpsters, shredders, recycle bins, and hazardous waste disposal units. It was truly amazing what we found in all of “corners”. Some of you will be happy to know that we found grade books (yes books, not spreadsheets) back to 1927! They are now safely stored in Marquez Hall for our reference – should we need to know any of your grades.
Marquez Hall is a building of light and views! On the 3rd floor there is a spot where I can stand and look to the North and see the Dakota Hogback, to the South see Jefferson County’s offices, to the East see South Table Mountain, and to the West see the “M” with hang gliders gently flying over Golden.
It is also a building of education and research. Our “wet” research labs were designed for our current work (mostly low, low permeability unconventional reservoirs) but also to have the flexibility to be reconfigured for the next big research focus. Our “dry” research centers were designed for student work space, computing spaces, meeting areas, and research professor rooms. All classrooms have smart podiums (ask Mark Miller for an explanation of “smart” because all I know is that they are smarter than I am!) We have rooms designed for multidisciplinary work, a visualization center, video conferencing capability, undergraduate and graduate computing rooms, and many student group/work rooms.
Entrance Lobby Panels
Marquez Hall is also designed for outreach and education for non-petroleum people and for K-12 education. The entrance lobby has six ten-foot tall stand-alone panels explaining our history and our contribution to the global society. There is a 16-foot cylinder filled with marbles, oil, and water showing oil migration and fluid flow in porous media. If you took PEGN 308 Rock Properties from me, I know you’ll recognize the donor recognition wall. It is a 25-foot tall, 3-D structural contour model of the Hildreth Unit in Montague County, TX. The south gallery has interactive monitors that explain the petroleum industry, explanations of how the Marquez Hall design saves energy, and a ten-foot panel showing the geology of Golden. This is a true treasure because the geology interpretation was done by Dr. Bob Weimer and the graphics were done by John Perez.
Donor Recognition Wall
Whenever you are in the Golden area or on Mines campus, please stop by and roam the halls even if you can’t find someone to give you a formal tour!
Now on to the Changes: Faculty - We have made offers to two potential faculty members, both at the Assistant Professor level, and they should be joining us this summer. Another search is about to begin! Jennifer Miskimins has decided to rejoin the private sector but, fortunately, she is also keeping her commitment to Mines and the Petroleum Engineering Department by remaining a professor with reduced load. She plans on continuing to teach the graduate level completions class and to continue, on limited basis, working on research in an advisory capacity. Schlumberger has implemented a new university support program where they imbed an expert in a university, full time, to teach and help with research. We are the proud recipient of Tom Bratton. This is a great program to help PE and Geoscience programs who are all in need of faculty.
Colleges – Operating CSM, like industry, is more complex than ever! All academic departments on campus have recently been “grouped” in to three colleges:
- College of Engineering and Computational Science (Departments of Applied Mathematics and Statistics, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Computational Science, and Mechanical Engineering)
- College of Applied Sciences and Engineering (Departments of Chemistry and Geochemistry, Chemical and Biological Engineering, Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, and Physics)
- College of Earth Resource Sciences and Engineering (Departments of Geology and Geological Engineering, Geophysics, Mining Engineering, Petroleum Engineering, Economics and Business, and Liberal Arts and International Studies)
Now when you read the departments in the College of Earth Resource Sciences and Engineering (CERSE) you may say “Wow that makes a lot of sense…and then you get to Liberal Arts and International Studies (LAIS)??” We departments in CERSE think it makes great sense because the traditional overarching role for the departments of Geology, Geophysics, Mining, and Petroleum is to add value through technology so we need Economics and Business but we all know in our industries public policy (Liberal Arts and --) determines how and if we can apply our technology and of course we are global industries (-- and International Studies).
We have a new college structure so of course we have Deans. The Dean of the College of Earth Resource Sciences and Engineering is me. When I get emails addressed to Dean Graves, my first thought is “wrong address”! It was an extremely difficult and emotional decision to step down as the Petroleum Engineering Department Head. The PE department is strong on every level: faculty, students, research, and general support from CSM, industry, alumni, and friends. After much thought, a few sleepless nights, and many discussions with the President and Provost and many alumni, I decided it was the correct move for CSM, the college, the department and for me personally to accept this new challenge. We cannot have a strong department within a weak college so it is in all of our best interest to support the college and, of course, the new dean!
Who is the PE Interim Department Head? Our very own Dr. Will Fleckenstein! He has given this new position much thought, spent a few sleepless nights, and had many discussions with the President, Provost, PE faculty, and me along with many alumni,and he decided it was the correct move for CSM, the college, and the department for him to accept this new challenge. Below is the announcement that went out to the CSM campus:
Dear Mines Community:
Dr. William Fleckenstein has been appointed to the position of Interim Department Head of the Petroleum Engineering Department, effective December 1, 2012. Dr. Fleckenstein has a long history with the Colorado School of Mines; he received his Bachelors, Masters and Ph.D., all in Petroleum Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines. Dr. Fleckenstein has 25 years experience in the petroleum industry, and is a registered professional engineer, has served the Petroleum Department as an Adjunct Professor since 2000, and has developed patent pending multi-stage fracturing technology at Mines that is the foundation of the CSM startup company, FracOptimal LLC. This is the first CSM startup company in PE’s history. Additionally Dr. Fleckenstein was awarded as a Co-PI, in partnership with CU and seven other organizations, a five year NSF Sustainability search Network, or SRN agreement to study the sustainability of natural gas development. Dr. Fleckenstein is committed to CSM and the Petroleum Engineering Department’s success, particularly in taking advantage of the opportunities afforded by the near-revolution of shale resource development, both nationally and internationally.
Big Move and Changes – yes indeed – Big Move and Changes!! All for the better for CSM and the Petroleum Engineering Department!
ps – personally all is well with me and mine. Big year of travel: Abu Dhabi, Perth Australia, China, Kuwait and various US meetings. The highlight was at SPE ATCE when several of you alums got together and created the Ramona M. Graves Endowed Scholarship Fund. I am so privileged to receive this honor and recognition for doing what I love. Thanks to you all for your continued support of the Department and Mines.
Ramona on the Great Wall of China
Kuwait CSM Alumni Association 2012