Hydrology and Land Surface Studies
Investigating biomineralization using synchrotron based X-ray computed microtomography
Article first published online: 28 APR 2011
Copyright 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 38, Issue 8, April 2011
How to Cite
2011), Investigating biomineralization using synchrotron based X-ray computed microtomography, Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L08406, doi:10.1029/2011GL046916., and (
- Issue published online: 28 APR 2011
- Article first published online: 28 APR 2011
- Manuscript Accepted: 25 MAR 2011
- Manuscript Revised: 16 MAR 2011
- Manuscript Received: 31 JAN 2011
- calcium carbonate
 This work presents the results of a study where synchrotron based x-ray computed microtomography (CMT) was used to investigate changes in pore morphology during calcium carbonate biomineralization. We simultaneously examine changes in pore microstructure and bulk permeability within glass bead columns during biogenic CaCO3 precipitation induced by Sporosarcina pasteurii. We observe a three order of magnitude reduction in permeability over relatively short time-scales (∼60 hrs) during the carbonate precipitation process. The resulting precipitates were a micro-porous composite of spherical and cubic CaCO3 precipitates. CMT images taken during precipitation were analyzed for effective pore radii, effective throat radii, and other pore-scale characteristics using 3DMA-ROCK. The Kozeny-Carman relation provided a poor fit to the raw permeability data, however, once this function was augmented with geometric information extracted from CMT imagery a better fit was provided suggesting that pore geometry should be considered temporally variable when modeling permeability change during biomineralization.