How accurate is predictive modeling of groundwater transport? A case study of advection, macrodispersion, and diffusive mass transfer at the Forsmark site (Sweden)

Authors

  • Vladimir Cvetkovic

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Water Resources Engineering, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
    • Corresponding author: V. Cvetkovic, Department of Water Resources Engineering, Royal Institute of Technology, Brinellv. 28, SE-10044, Stockholm, Sweden. (vdc@kth.se)

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Abstract

[1] We study predictive modeling of groundwater transport that accounts for three mechanisms: mean advection, macrodispersion, and mass transfer. A general methodology is presented and applied to a series of nonsorbing tracer tests along multiple pathways on scales ranging from ca. 70 to 300 m, in a highly heterogeneous aquifer at Forsmark (Sweden). The mean water residence time cannot be predicted well using a simple water balance model. Longitudinal macrodispersivity λL (L) and a mass transfer parameter group inline image are extrapolated from the control tracer experiments, to yield accurate predictions of tracer discharge, once the mean water residence time is constrained. A relatively simple modeling framework based on Fickian macrodispersion and diffusion seems to be adequate for reproducing the tracer discharge in this complex and highly heterogeneous porous media.

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