Non-Fickian Transport in Transparent Replicas of Rough-Walled Rock Fractures - Université de Lorraine Access content directly
Journal Articles Transport in Porous Media Year : 2013

Non-Fickian Transport in Transparent Replicas of Rough-Walled Rock Fractures


We present an experimental investigation and modeling analysis of tracer transport in two transparent fracture replicas. The original fractures used in this work are a Vosges sandstone sample with nominal dimensions approximately 26 cm long and 15 cm wide, and a granite sample with nominal dimensions approximately 33 cm long and 15.5 cm wide. The aperture map and physical characteristics of the fractures reveal that the aperture map of the granite fracture has a higher spatial variability than the Vosges sandstone one. A conservative methylene blue aqueous solution was injected uniformly along the fracture inlets, and exited through free outlet boundaries. A series of images was recorded at known time intervals during each experiment. Breakthrough curves were subsequently determined at the fracture outlets and at different distances, using an image processing based on the attenuation law of Beer―Lambert. These curves were then interpreted using a stratified medium model that incorporates a permeability distribution to account for the fracture heterogeneity, and a continuous time random walk (CTRW) model, as well as the classical advection―dispersion equation (ADE). The stratified model provides generally satisfactory matches to the data, while the CTRW model captures the full evolution of the long tailing displayed by the breakthrough curves. The transport behavior is found to be non-Fickian, so that the ADE is not applicable. In both stratified and CTRW models, parameter values related to the aperture field spatial variability indicate that the granite fracture is more heterogeneous than the Vosges sandstone fracture.

Dates and versions

hal-01431067 , version 1 (10-01-2017)



Ali Nowamooz, Giovanni Radilla, Mostafa Fourar, Brian Berkowitz. Non-Fickian Transport in Transparent Replicas of Rough-Walled Rock Fractures. Transport in Porous Media, 2013, 98 (3), pp.651--682. ⟨10.1007/s11242-013-0165-7⟩. ⟨hal-01431067⟩
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