Soil physics and numerical modelling

Mandana Shaygan is a soil physicist who works across disciplines to understand the effect and interaction of chemical processes on soil physical structure and transport properties.

Mandana’s research focuses on rehabilitation of degraded landscapes, quantification and modelling of water flow and solute and nutrient transport in porous media, characterisation of soil hydrological and mechanical properties and soil salinity management. Since the completion of her PhD, Mandana has been involved in various research projects on soil, mine wastes, waste rocks and mine waste cover design. Her research interest includes but is not limited to: (i) rehabilitation of degraded landscapes, (ii) salinity, (iii) water flow and solute and nutrient transport, (iv) evaporation from porous media, (v) estimation of water balance parameters.


Mandana obtained both BSc and MSc degrees in Agronomy from The University of Tehran. She also has Master of Environmental Management from The University of Queensland (UQ). Mandana completed her PhD in Soil Science at UQ. Before joining SMI as a postdoctoral research fellow, she worked with NSW Department of Primary Industries on amelioration of subsoil constraints. Mandana is a reviewer of high ranking journals, and she is a member of Soil Science Australia.


  • Centennial Coal-Swamp hydrology modelling for advancing rehabilitation planning and management
  • Klohn Crippen Berger Ltd-Improving the timing of deposition for red mud in waste disposal sites
  • NSW Department of Primary Industries-Amelioration of subsoil sodicity using soil amendments
  • Beach Energy Ltd-Evaluating rehabilitation potential of brine affected soil


Mandana’s research has led to collaborations with other universities such as Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Federation University and Monash University as well as industry organisations such as Centennial Coal, South32, Klohn Crippen Berger Ltd (KCB) and Beach Energy Ltd. 


Mandana’s research has been supported by an innovation connections grant, Klohn Crippen Berger Ltd and Australian Coal Association Research Program.