Thomas Finkbeiner, Ph.D.


Research Professor of Rock Geomechanics Research

Research Interests

Prof. Finkbeiner investigates how in response to pore pressure changes in a field/reservoir (i.e., injection, stimulation, or depletion) the reservoir rocks respond mechanically and how this impacts flow (e.g., production) from the affected reservoirs. Monitoring, laboratory testing, as well as numerical modeling will provide an understanding and enhanced predictive capabilities for these phenomena for a variety of reservoir types such as fractured reservoirs (in particular carbonates), unconventional reservoirs, and so-called brown fields (that are produced using improved and enhanced recovery methods). Another focus is on wellbore stability (i.e., mechanical integrity of boreholes both during drilling and production/injection) and real-time data acquisition and risk mitigation. Guaranteeing successful well construction is paramount for cost reduction and optimizing well delivery. 

Dr. Finkbeiner leads the Rock Geomechanics Research Group.

Selected Publications

  • Introduction to the Thematic Collection: Naturally Fractured Reservoirs
    T. Finkbeiner, G. Bertotti, S. Geiger.
    Geological Society of London, volume 25, (2019)
  • Reservoir Management of a low Permeability off-shore Reservoir Utilizing Water
    T. Clemens, T. Finkbeiner, M-M. Chiotoroiu, K. Pettengell, S. Hercus, A. Suri, M-M.Sharma
    Society of Petroleum Engineers, , (2015)
  • Reservoir optimized fracturing - higher productivity from low permeability reservoirs through customized multistage...
    T. Finkbeiner, H-C. Freitag, M. Siddiqui, R. Woudwijk, K. Jospeh, F. Amberg
    Society of Petroleum Engineers, SPE 141371-PP., (2011)
  • Role of Geomechanics in appraisal of a deep tight gas reservoir: A case history from the Amin formation in Oman.
    S. Perumalla, D. Moos, C.A. Barton, T. Finkbeiner, S. Al-Mahrooqi, M. Weissenbach, W. Walt...
    Society of Petroleum Engineers, SPE 142788-PP, (2011).
  • The value of geomechanics in tight gas reservoir development.
    T. Finkbeiner, P. Nawrocki, R.K. Bratli, B. Smart
    Proceedings of ISRM International Symposium and 6th Asian Rock Mechanics Symposi..., (2010)
  • Value of 3D geomechanical modelling in field development—A new approach using geostatistics
    M. Holland, M. Brudy, W. van der Zee, S. Perumalla, T. Finkbeiner T.
    Society of Petroleum Engineers NEWS, pp. , (14 – 18, May,2010)
  • Determination of Stress Orientation and Magnitude in Deep Wells
    M.D. Zoback, C.A. Barton, M.O. Brudy, D.A. Castillo, B.R. Grollimund, T. Finkbeiner, D.B. ...
    International Journal of Rock Mechanics, v. 40, pp. 1049 1076,, (2003)
  • Comprehensive Wellbore Stability Analysis Utilizing Quantitative Risk Assessment
    D. Moos, P. Peska, T. Finkbeiner, M.D. Zoback.
    Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, v.38, no.3-4, pp.97-109, (2003)
  • Overpressure and Flow-Focusing in the Eugene Island 330 field (Offshore Louisiana, U.S.A.): Theory, Examples, and I...
    P.B. Flemings, B.B. Stump, T. Finkbeiner, M.D. Zoback
    American Journal of Science, v. 302, p. 827-855, (2002)
  • Stress, pore pressure, and dynamically constrained hydrocarbon columns in the South Eugene Island Field, Gulf of Me...
    T. Finkbeiner, M. D. Zoback, B. B. Stump, P. B. Flemings
    American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin, v.85, no.6, pp. 1007-1031, (2001)


  • Ph.D. Geophysics, Stanford University, California, US, 1998
  • M.S. Exploration and Development, Stanford University, California, US, 1994
  • ‘Vordiplom’ Geophysics, Fridericana University, Karlsruhe, Germany, 1990
  • Abitur at Otto-Hahn-Gymnasium, Karlsruhe, Germany, 1986

Professional Profile

  • 2016 - Present: Senior Research Scientist, ANPERC, KAUST, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia
  • 2011 – 2013: Global Geomechanics Advisor, Baker Hughes, Dubai, UAE
  • 2009 – 2011: Regional Technical Advisor EAME, Baker Hughes, Dubai, UAE
  • 2000 – 2008: Director EAME, GeoMechanics International, Inc, Dubai, UAE
  • 1998 – 2000: Geophysicist, GeoMechanics International, Inc., Palo Alto, CA, USA​

Scientific and Professional Membership

  • Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE)
  • European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers (EAGE)
  • International Society of Rock Mechanics (ISRM)
  • American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)​


  • ​1995 –1996: Richard Shanon and Blaustein foundations fellowship
  • 1995: Centennial Teaching Assistant Award for outstanding teaching in the School of Earth Sciences at Stanford University
  • 1992 –1993: Cecil Green and American Chemical foundations fellowship 

KAUST Affiliations

  • ​Ali I. Al-Naimi Petroleum Engineering Research Center (ANPERC)
  • Division of Physical Science and Engineering (PSE)

Research Interests Keywords

​Geomechanics Drilling Well completion Reservoir modeling