Dynamics of Fluids and Transport in Fractured Rock

Dynamics of Fluids and Transport in Fractured Rock

Editor(s): Boris Faybishenko, Paul A. Witherspoon, John Gale

Published Online: 18 MAR 2013 07:29PM EST

Print ISBN: 9780875904276

Online ISBN: 9781118666173

DOI: 10.1029/GM162

About this Book

Published by the American Geophysical Union as part of the Geophysical Monograph Series, Volume 162.

How to characterize fluid flow, heat, and chemical transport in geologic media remains a central challenge for geo-scientists and engineers worldwide. Investigations of fluid flow and transport within rock relate to such fundamental and applied problems as environmental remediation; nonaqueous phase liquid (NAPL) transport; exploitation of oil, gas, and geothermal resources; disposal of spent nuclear fuel; and geotechnical engineering. It is widely acknowledged that fractures in unsaturated-saturated rock can play a major role in solute transport from the land surface to underlying aquifers. It is also evident that general issues concerning flow and transport predictions in subsurface fractured zones can be resolved in a practical manner by integrating investigations into the physical nature of flow in fractures, developing relevant mathematical models and modeling approaches, and collecting site characterization data. Because of the complexity of flow and transport processes in most fractured rock flow problems, it is not yet possible to develop models directly from first principles. One reason for this is the presence of episodic, preferential water seepage and solute transport, which usually proceed more rapidly than expected from volume-averaged and time-averaged models. However, the physics of these processes is still known.

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