Scaling Immiscible Flow in Porous Media

Centrifuge modelling is a technique that has proved useful in the study of miscible transport processes through porous media. This report presents a discussion on the feasibility of modelling immiscible flow processes using a geotechnical centrifuge, with particular reference to the phenomena of fingering and residual entrapment. The analysis of scaling for the mechanism of fingering indicates that unstable wetting displacements can be modelled using centrifuge testing techniques. However, scaling analyses for the mechanism of capillary entrapment show that above certain critical Capillary and Bond numbers, the degree of non-aqueous phase liquid entrapment will be lower in a centrifuge model than the corresponding prototype. Nonetheless, it is argued this does not prohibit centrifuge modelling from making a useful contribution towards the study of immiscible flow processes in porous media.

    Keywords: NAPL ; Capillary number ; Bond number ; Fingering ; Instability ; Entrapment


    Department of Environmental Engineering, Centre for Water Research Report Number WP1207PC, The University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Western Australia 6907 Australia. 20 pp.


    • ECOL-REPORT-2008-006

    Record created on 2008-10-11, modified on 2016-08-08

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