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Data from Foster et al. (2021), Effects of large-scale heterogeneity and temporally varying hydrologic processes on estimating immobile pore space: A mesoscale-laboratory experimental and numerical modeling investigation
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|Created:||Oct 15, 2019 at 12:49 a.m.|
|Last updated:|| Apr 21, 2021 at 3:49 p.m.
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The data presented here are published in Foster, A., Trautz, A.C., Bolster, D., Illangasekare, I., and Singha, K. (2021). Effects of large-scale heterogeneity and temporally varying hydrologic processes on estimating immobile pore space: A mesoscale-laboratory experimental and numerical modeling investigation. Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jconhyd.2021.103811.
The advection-dispersion equation (ADE) often fails to predict solute transport, in part due to incomplete mixing in the subsurface, which the development of non-local models has attempted to deal with. One such model is dual-domain mass transfer (DDMT); one parameter that exists within this model type is called immobile porosity. Here, we explore the complexity of estimating immobile porosity under varying flow rates and density dependencies in a large-scale heterogeneous system. Immobile porosity is estimated experimentally and using numerical models in 3-D flow systems, and is defined by domains of comparatively low advective velocity instead of truly immobile regions at the pore scale. Tracer experiments were conducted in a mesoscale 3-D tank system with embedded large impermeable zones and the generated data were analyzed using a numerical model. The impermeable zones were used to explore how large-scale structure and heterogeneity affect parameter estimation of immobile porosity, assuming a dual-porosity model, and resultant characterization of the aquifer system. Spatially and temporally co-located fluid electrical conductivity (σ_f) and bulk apparent electrical conductivity (σ_b)—using geophysical methods—were measured to estimate immobile porosity, and numerical modeling (i.e., SEAWAT and R3t) was conducted to explore controls of the immobile zones on the experimentally observed flow and transport. Results showed that density-dependent flow increased the hysteresis between measured fluid and bulk electrical conductivity, resulting in larger interpreted immobile pore-space estimates. Increasing the dispersivity in the model simulations decreased the estimated immobile porosity; flow rate had no impact. Overall, the results of this study highlight the difficulty faced in determining immobile porosity values in field settings, where hydrogeologic processes may vary temporally. Our results also highlight that immobile porosity is an effective parameter in an upscaled model whose physical meaning is not necessarily clear and that may not align with intuitive interpretations of a porosity.
Column experiments from Allan Foster's thesis contributing to this work are also included below.
|This resource is described by||Foster, A. (2019). An exploration of solute transport mobility in 1-D and 3-D physical models. MS Thesis, Hydrologic Science and Engineering Program, Colorado School of Mines.|
|This resource is described by||Foster, A., Trautz, A.C., Bolster, D., Illangasekare, I., and Singha, K. (2021). Effects of large-scale heterogeneity and temporally varying hydrologic processes on estimating immobile pore space: A mesoscale-laboratory experimental and numerical modeling investigation. Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jconhyd.2021.103811.|
This resource was created using funding from the following sources:
|Agency Name||Award Title||Award Number|
|National Science Foundation||Collaborative Research: Unraveling Transport in Porous Media through the Integration of Isotopic Tracers, Geophysical Data, and Numerical Modeling||EAR-1446235|
People or Organizations that contributed technically, materially, financially, or provided general support for the creation of the resource's content but are not considered authors.
|Tissa Illangasekare||Colorado School of Mines|
|Andrew Trautz||Colorado School of Mines||Colorado, US|
|Jackie Randell||Colorado School of Mines|
|Diogo Bolster||Notre Dame|